Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Extreme weather in North America - 05/13/2016

100 year old records tumble: All three of Alaska's major cities set record temperatures over the weekend

17 May, 2016

All three of Alaska's major cities saw record temperatures over the weekend amid a statewide heat wave that is coming to an end this week.

According to statements from the National Weather Service, about a dozen locations across the state tied or broke their daily record temperatures since Friday.

On Saturday, McGrath and Delta Junction in the Interior hit a high of 78 degrees and a low of 49 degrees, respectively, edging out records set in 2005 and 1988.
Cold Bay on the Alaska Peninsula reached 63 degrees Sunday, 2 degrees above its 2014 record for that date.

In Fairbanks on Saturday a high of 82 shattered a century-old record of 80 degrees set in 1915.

By Sunday, Anchorage was reporting a record 72 degrees -- 7 degrees above the previous high of 65 degrees, set in 2014 -- and Juneau International Airport hit 75 degrees, beating the date's previous 1993 high by 2 degrees.

Bethel recorded 73 degrees Monday, edging out its 1996 high of 72 degrees.
Even Barrow got in on the action Friday, with high and low temperatures of 42 and 32 degrees breaking records of 38 and 30 degrees set in 1928 and 1996, respectively.

Anchorage-based NWS meteorologist Christian Cassell said Monday that easterly wind flows helped drive warm high-pressure systems over the weekend, which prevailed across a swath of the state extending from King Salmon to Seward.

"Even for mid-May it was a fairly strong high, so that's why so many of the records went by the wayside," Cassell said.

"The long-term pattern for the last couple of years has been incredibly warm too -- so when you combine those two things, those two things together really combine to help a lot of those really high record temperatures."

University of Alaska Fairbanks climatologist Brian Brettschneider said that Anchorage has set record high temperatures at a rate that puts it on track to have its most ever this year, breaking a record set in 2003.
April in Alaska

According to NOAA The Alaska April temperature was record high at 33.3°F, 10.0°F above the 1925-2000 average and 0.4°F warmer than the previous record set in 1940.

Record warmth was observed across the southern parts of the state with much-above-average temperatures for central and northern Alaska.

Anchorage had its warmest April on record with a temperature of 43.5°F, 2.8°F warmer than the previous record set just last year.

Parts of the Yukon River observed the earliest ice break up on record and Fairbanks observed a record-early 'green up', or start of the vegetation growing season.
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