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Beyond The Forecast: We crunch the numbers after a hot, wet summer

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(WSLS)

ROANOKE, Va. – Happy Tuesday! We here at Your Local Weather Authority hope everyone had a fabulous Labor Day weekend.

Some consider the holiday to be the end to summer. Others mark the change in seasons with the autumnal equinox on September 22. For the purposes of this newsletter, we’ll be referring to “meteorological” summer, which ended August 31.

So summer’s over, and it was a hot and wet one in our corner of the Commonwealth! Let’s break down the temperature numbers first.

If you live in Roanoke, you were probably sweating on quite a few days over the past three months. You may remember that the Star City had a record heatwave in July, which was a big factor in sending this summer into the history books.

The average temperature from June to August was 77.6 degrees, which comes in third on the list of hottest summers. The only summers higher on the list are 2010 and 2011, at 78.2 and 78.0 degrees respectively.

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(WSLS)

It was also quite hot in Lynchburg this past summer, with an average temperature of 77.5 degrees. That comes in a tie for fourth with the summer of 1993. The hottest summer on record in the Hill City happened in 1943 when the average temperature was 78.5 degrees.

The heat from June to August wasn’t quite as impressive in Blacksburg and Danville, so those communities’ summers come in lower in the record books.

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(WSLS)

Switching gears to precipitation, it was a wetter-than-average summer across our four climate sites (Roanoke, Lynchburg, Danville and Blacksburg).

It was especially wet in Lynchburg, as the city received nearly 20 inches of rain at the official rain gauge at the airport. This comes in as the 5th wettest summer on record in the Hill City. More than half of the rain came in August (nearly 11 inches).

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(WSLS)

Summer rainfall numbers are typically dependent on where specific thunderstorms track and not the overall pattern. So I would still say it was a wet summer in Roanoke, Danville and Blacksburg, although each community’s numbers weren’t as high as Lynchburg’s.

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(WSLS)

With summer in the rearview mirror, we’re looking forward to the cooler days of fall. I broke down what we can expect from the new season weather-wise in last week’s newsletter, check it out!

This week’s forecast features a return of the humidity as well as clouds and daily rain chances. Your Local Weather Authority meteorologist Chris Michaels has a great primer of what’s coming.

You can always get specific forecast details for your zone, whether it’s the Roanoke Valley, Lynchburg area, the New River Valley or elsewhere around Southwest and Central Virginia, anytime at WSLS.com/weather. Know your zone!

In case you missed it, we’re posting great weather content on WSLS.com. Here are a few links from the past week to check out:

If you prefer your weather information delivered by social media, you can follow Your Local Weather Authority on Facebook and Twitter.

-- Justin McKee


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