Good Morning
Good Morning

LI marks second-longest no-90-degree-day string

Eileen Donovan, 2, of Floral Park, takes a

Eileen Donovan, 2, of Floral Park, takes a cozy nap bundled up in her grandparent's wagon while on Point Lookout Beach on Aug. 12, 2014. Credit: Danielle Finkelstein

Long Island now has the second-longest 90-degree-free streak in its history.

As of Monday, Long Island MacArthur Airport has seen 387 consecutive days with temperatures of 89 or below, based on the past 30 years of data, according to the Northeast Regional Climate Center.

Monday's achievement is still a far cry, though, from the record 709 days from July 6, 2003, through June 13, 2005.

While the temperature has teetered close to 90 this year, it has gotten only as far as 89 on June 18, with the next closest, 88, being reached last Sunday, June 26 and May 27, according to the National Weather Service.

That means July came and went without even winking at a heat wave, defined as three or more consecutive days with 90 degrees or above. Over the 30 years that the weather service has maintained records at the airport, 15 heat waves have occurred in July, with five each in June and August, the service said.

Still, the area is not seeing "dramatic departures" on the cool side, with most days hovering not that far from the averages, said Tim Morrin, weather service meteorologist in Upton. It's just "a lack of heat-wave weather," he said.

While some people like to say this dearth of sweltering days is nature's way of compensating Long Islanders for the brutal winter, in fact, the same weather pattern that brought that frigid cold is what's keeping those heat waves at bay, he said.

Similar to the winter months, a ridge over western North America and a trough farther to its east are resulting in the jet stream's dipping south over the eastern United States, carrying cooler air with it, Morrin said.

As with earlier 90-free strings, this one is just an example of "natural variation," said Jessica Spaccio, a climatologist with the Northeast Regional Climate Center, located at Cornell University. "Not every year is hot," she said.

Indeed, looking at the country as a whole, this was "the coolest July for the Lower 48 since 2009," the National Climatic Data Center said in a news release.

The string of no-90s appears to be continuing, at least for the coming days, Morrin said. Tuesday hit a high of 80 at the airport, with Wednesday expected to see highs of about 78, up to about 80 Thursday and about 77 on Friday.

The weekend was looking at highs in the low 80s, Morrin said, which is the norm.

More news