Driest September on Record

By Russell Russ

From June through September this year three of those four months were below average for rainfall. September was the driest September on record since 1932 when regular recording began at the weather station. Many locations in Connecticut were in drought conditions for a good part of the summer into early fall. How about Norfolk? Over this four month span Norfolk was actually 2.44 inches above normal for rainfall. Seems hard to believe, but thanks to July’s record rainfall of 12.76 inches we were above normal for precipitation. This July was the wettest July on record for us, surpassing the 11.47 inches recorded in July 1996. This July was also the ninth wettest month of any month on record. That is ninth out of 991 months of weather recording. In July in Norfolk, when it rained it poured.

September’s high temperature of 85 degrees was observed on both September 2 and 6. The low temperature of 40 degrees was observed on September 19. The average mean temperature was 60 degrees, 1.2 degrees warmer than average. There were no temperature records set this month. In fact, there were no temperature records set in June, July or August either. The summer months were all fairly average temperature-wise.

It is highly unlikely that we will see a temperature of 90 degrees or higher for the rest of the year. Norfolk typically hits 90 degrees or above about two to three times each year. Not this year. The highest temperature recorded at the station this year was 89 degrees on July 2. After that it was 86 on July 23 and then 85 on five other dates. No real heat waves and no days at or above 90 degrees. The icebox legend continues.

The rainfall total for September was just 1.16 inches. This was 3.56 inches below normal and made this September the driest on record. The old record for September was 1.31 inches in 1964. It was the seventeenth driest month of any month on record here at the weather station. While temperatures were fairly average all summer, we sure did see some wild swings in rainfall amounts. There were a combined total of seven thunderstorms in June, August and September. July alone had eleven.

Through September this year, the total yearly precipitation amount was 41.81 inches, 2.45 inches above normal. No snowfall or even frost at the weather station so far, but stay tuned over the coming months, many preliminary reports suggest it might be a cold and snowy winter. Then again, many reports also suggest if might be warmer than normal.