On Groundhog Day in 1952, the earliest tropical storm on record to strike the United States formed and quickly raced from the Caribbean into southern Florida before racing out into the Atlantic Ocean.
The 1952 Groundhog Day tropical storm formed very early on Feb. 2 in the far-western Caribbean Sea and was declared a tropical cyclone with initial winds around 35 mph.
The system quickly raced northeastward, brushing the northwest coast of Cuba before making landfall near Cape Sable, Fla., early on Feb. 3.
The system then crossed Florida, passing near Miami along the way. According to the National Weather Service office in Miami, Fla., they recorded a wind gust of 68 mph as well as sustained tropical storm-force winds for four hours.
After passing through Florida, the tropical storm emerged over the western Atlantic and accelerated northeastward, transitioning into an extratropical storm.
With a storm with such unusual timing, residents were reportedly caught off guard. There were many reports of wind damage and power outages along with upward of 4 inches of rainfall.
Such heavy rains during a very dry time of year caused significant damage to vegetable crops of south Miami-Date County, according to USA Today.
To this date, the Groundhog Day storm remains the only tropical cyclone in the month of February and the earliest one on record to strike the United States.
Tropical Depression Eight will brush the North Carolina coast with rough surf, downpours and locally gusty thunderstorms into Wednesday.
Tropical Depression Nine will continue to churn over the Gulf of Mexico before turning toward the northeastern Gulf Coast of the United States later this week.
Another strong tropical disturbance has moved off the coast of Africa and bears watching for strengthening and impact on the Caribbean and the United States during September.
Two tropical systems, Madeline and Lester, could pose hazards to Hawaii from the middle of the week into Labor Day weekend.
Though the summer season is winding down, forecasters are predicting a warm start to fall across the Northeast — a weather pattern that could spell bad news for fall foliage lovers.
The worst thing that people who live along coastlines can do is not to prepare for tropical storms and hurricanes.
Philadelphia, PA (1991)
Mercury reached 90 degrees or better for the 49th day this year, as the high was 92. This tied the all-time record for the most 90 plus days in a year, set in 1988. The record would be broken in September. The total for 1991 was 53 days.
West Chester, PA (1922)
So much hail fell that fields were covered with up to two feet drifted hail--the next day!!
New England (1954)
Hurricane Carol, first of 3 hurricanes to affect New England that year - 60 dead and $450 million damage.