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Warmest September on Record for NYC, Boston and Others

By By Courtney Spamer, Meteorologist
October 01, 2015, 2:57:51 AM EDT

The summerlike temperatures that continued well beyond August will result in the warmest September on record for many locations across the Midwest and the Northeast.

Even though some cooler/near-average temperatures occurred during the last part of the month, the surplus of abnormally high temperatures so far this month was too much to overcome.

The result will be record-setting warmth in many major cities and smaller towns.


In New York City's Central Park, the average temperature through Sept. 29 was 74.6 F, nearly a full degree above the record month in 1961, where the average temperature was 73.5.

Record-challenging temperatures extend as far west as Minneapolis, where the average temperature through Sept. 29 was slightly below the warmest September ever (in 1897) at 68.8 F.

The warmest September on record for Pittsburgh was in 1881, when the average temperature throughout the month was 77.3 F. This September is likely to be the warmest since 1931. Through Sept. 29, the average temperature in Pittsburgh has been warmer than that, at 70.0 F, about 5.6 degrees above normal for the month.

Dozens of locations, including Boston; Hartford, Connecticut; Burlington, Vermont; and Traverse City, Michigan; will have their warmest September on record this month. Many of these records date back to the early 1900s and a few go back to the late 1800s.

Other locations including Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland and Philadelphia will come close to breaking the record and will land within the top 10 warmest Septembers.

In these areas and others, the record will be denied due to the cool weather prior to the end or at the tail end of the month.

Autumn temperatures, however, are not expected to last very far into October.

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"The thinking is that, with the strong El Niño in place, we are likely to see a continuation of the warmer-than-normal pattern of September into October from the Midwest to the Northeast," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Joe Lundberg said.

For the first half of October, normal temperatures in New York City drop from near 70 F to 65 F. By the middle of October, normal highs in Chicago drop into the lower 60s. Temperatures even slightly above these normals will still be noticeably cooler than what was recorded during the beginning of September.

However, Lundberg warned this would not mean October would be without its cold spells.

"There will be a couple of notable cool outbreaks, including the one to start off the month of October, and likely another the following week," Lundberg added.

Lundberg and the collective team of Long-Range Meteorologists at AccuWeather will continue to monitor the pattern as the fall progresses, keeping an eye on the fall foliage that could be hindered by the extended warmth in the East. AccuWeather Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski contributed content to this story.

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