ORLANDO, Fla. – It’s an obvious statement, that summer is usually the hottest season of the year but this year’s meteorological summer was one for the record books when it comes to both heat and rainfall.
Meteorological summer -- the period between June and August-- is slightly different than the more commonly known astronomical seasons.
Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall are the four astronomical seasons, that are based on the Earth’s rotation and can fluctuate between 89 and 93 days long.
For consistency, meteorologists use a different seasonal timeline, with each season lasting exactly three months.
So, let’s get back to Summer 2020. According the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, “June through August’s end, was a standout." Keep reading to find out why.
Summer 2020 Rankings Nationally
The average temperature and precipitation for the last three months across the contiguous U.S. ranked as the fourth hottest and the third driest summer on record.
The average temperature across the country was 73.6 degrees, which run 2.2 degrees above the seasonal average. When it comes to precipitation values, it seems to be split down the middle: Wet on the east side and very dry on the west. When averaged out, the total precipitation total was 7.99 inches, about 0.33 inches below average.
The close of summer 2020 was certainly an unforgettable one. In August, the nation experienced extreme heat and violent weather.
“The U.S. endured heat waves, hurricanes, a devastating derecho and raging wildfires out West,” according to NOAA.
Summer 2020 Rankings Locally
The national recap looks very similar to what we experienced here in Central Florida.
The extended duration of warmer than normal conditions during the day and night, is what led to a seasonal average about half a degree to a degree above the normal for the majority of Central Florida.
- Daytona Beach: 83.2° (0.5° above average)
- Leesburg: 5th warmest Summer 83.0° (0.5° above average)
- Orlando: 5th warmest Summer 83.5° (1.2° above average)
- Sanford: 4th warmest Summer 83.9° (1.2° above average)
- Melbourne: 5th warmest Summer 82.2° (0.9° above average)
Rainfall totals for the summer were generally near to above normal for much of the area. However, due to the scattered coverage our rain totals were a mixed bag of surplus and deficits.
- Daytona Beach: 18.62″ (+0.56″ above average)
- Leesburg: 16.99″ (-5.18″ below average)
- Orlando: 25.02″ (+3.04″ above average)
- Sanford: 18.02″ (-3.68″ below average)
- Melbourne: 19.84″ (0.51″ below average)