A rainfall record set in 1888 was broken in Los Angeles, California this week. L.A. got 2.16 inches of rain in one day, compared to the previous record of 0.96 inches. Similarly, Sacramento, California got 5.44 inches of rainfall in October, beating out the previous 1880 record of 5.28 inches.
2021 Has Been A Record Year for Weather
California is just one of many states that have broken weather records this year. There have been new highs (and lows) in a lot of areas: rainfall, snowfall, and highest and lowest temperatures. We’ve been keeping the National Weather Service pretty busy! Let’s see what kinds of things our weather service has been recording this year.
Temperature Milestones by State
Record-breaking high temperatures were common this summer, even for the northwest. Seattle, Washington, and Portland, Oregon both got new high temperatures in June. Seattle had two record-breaking days. The first day saw a temperature of 107 degrees. The next day reached 108 degrees. Portland also broke its high-temperature record more than once. The first highest temperature reached was 112 degrees, but a few days after that, Portland reached 116 degrees.
We can’t forget California, of course. California’s Death Valley hit a new daily average high temperature of 118 degrees. This temperature was recorded over a span of 24 hours. Furthermore, Death Valley hit temperatures of 130 degrees in July. That almost beat the 1913 high temperature of 134 degrees, which was set in 1913. Climate experts wonder if the 1913 temperature is accurate.
Texas had a rough time at the beginning of this year. Many Texas cities recorded new low temperatures throughout February. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reported record-low temperatures for Austin, San Antonio, and Del Rio. This was due to the horrible winter storm they had.
Austin, Texas had below-freezing temperatures for six days and 20 hours. That broke the previous 1951 record of four days and 16 hours.
Rainfall and Snowfall Milestones by State
The NWS reported that 73% of the United States was covered in snow on February 16th. Colorado, New Jersey, and Texas all had record-breaking snow this year.
Tennessee had 17 inches of rainfall during one 24-hour period. This rain led to “catastrophic flash flooding” and multiple deaths, according to AccuWeather Chief Meteorologist Jonathan Porter.
New York City had flash flooding, too. This was after one hour of rain, though. Hurricane Ida broke the one-hour rainfall record in NYC that was set by Tropical Storm Henri a month before.
At any rate, we can probably expect some more ground-breaking weather next year. So long as we all keep our rain boots, winter coats, and portable fans with us, we should be ready for the 2022 weather.