Update: This summer was officially Austin’s third hottest on record, the Austin American-Statesman reported Sunday. The daily summed up National Weather Service figures for the period, June 1-August 31, 2018, including average temperature (87.6 degrees), most consecutive days with highs of over 100 degrees (15 days), and total number of days with 100-plus temperatures (51).
The highest temperature of the summer, 110 degrees on July 23, was also the hottes on record for that month. Austin’s hottest recorded summers were in 2009 and 2011. The lowest is 70 degrees, on August 2.
August was the city’s driest month since January, and the area continues to be in moderate to severe drought, with continued watering restrictions and a burn ban in Travis and several surrounding counties. Citing U.S. Drought Monitor data, the paper reported that 81.44 percent of Texas remains in drought.
Update: Austin has now had 48 days when the temperature reached 100 degrees or more, KUT reported Tuesday. National Weather Service meteorologist Brett Williams told the station’s Mose Buschele that the city is expected to end the summer an temperature of 87.6 degrees—the third hottest recorded in Austin, coming in behind 2009 and 2011. It addition, this summer will have been the one with the sixth highest number of days when the temperature reached triple digits—though that could change if it does so again in the next two days.
Note: This article was originally published on August 22 and has been updated.
As days when the temperature soars above 100 pile up this summer, it’s looking like 2018 might turn out to be Austin’s hottest on record, according to a Tuesday Austin American-Statesman story.
Temperatures heading into the final day of the meteorological summer, August 31, are expected to exceed 100 degrees—at least through Friday, according to the local daily. If that prediction bears out, it would put the number of triple-digit days at least 45 for 2018. That number for 2017—Austin’s hottest overall year on record, which 2018 is not expected to top—was 42.
The Statesman also reported that the average temperature for summer 2018 is 87.4 degrees—1.3 degrees hotter than it was in 2017—with more 100-degree-plus days on the horizon.
While earlier in the summer, fires and Saharan dust clouds added to the meteorological misery, lack of rain is emerging as a familiar factor in the persistence of record-high temperatures. The Statesman reported Austin’s rainfall deficit this year as 3.87 inches at Camp Mabry and 7.41 inches at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, with water in the Highland Lakes almost nine feet below normal.
Last year, 90 percent of Texas was drought-free at this time, the Statesman reported, while the current level is 22 percent.
While the weather situation in Austin is relatively calm, certainly compared the deadly wildfires that continue to sweep Northern and Southern California and other western states, it’s important to remember that prolonged high temperatures can be deadly on their own. Water up and stay cool, y’all.