Probably not a record, but July was hotter than normal

Published 9:23 am Tuesday, August 2, 2011

If you thought the month just ending was hotter than usual, you were right.

National Weather Service Meteorologist Tim Axford said the Huntington, W.Va.,-Ironton, Ohio-Ashland, Ky., area registered 18 days in July when the temperature reached or surpassed the 90-degree point.

In an average year July only registers 8 days of 90-or-higher-degree days and last year there were only 7, Axford said.

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“There’s been a ridge of high pressure over the central part of the continental U.S and it’s bringing a lot of heat into our area,” Axford said.

And we aren’t alone. Axford said this ridge of high pressure is bringing heat to much of the central and southern United States.

Axford said July has also been quite humid and the moisture in the air has actually kept temperatures from getting worse.

The hottest day last month was July 21, when the mercury was at 95 but the heat index made the temperature feel like 100-plus degrees.

And July was wetter than usual, too. Our area saw 6.25 inches of precipitation. The norm for July for our area is 4.5 inches.

Axford said August appears to be starting out with near normal temperatures and precipitation but as the month progresses, he said look for the temperatures to drop, perhaps to a level slightly below normal and for rainfall to be slightly above average for this time of year.

“Midweek we should a little cooler air and our temperatures should be more in the mid-80s than the mid-90s,” Axford said. “And that’s cooler relative to what we’ve been seeing.”