Sweltering heat, humidity return to usher in start of summer

Posted June 20, 2012

— Humid air and high temperatures in the mid-90s will usher in the official start of summer on Wednesday, making the mild spring weather that's dominated central North Carolina the past week a distant memory, WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said. 

"We're really changing things up because we have had such a mild spring, but this is the first day of summer," she said. "We'll be hazy, hot and humid today, and like most summer days, we could see an isolated thunderstorm pop up in spots."

Wednesday's high will top out around 94 degrees, and the mercury could reach 96 degrees Thursday afternoon, the hottest day of the next week. The average daily high for June 20 is 86 degrees, and the record, set in 1964 is 99 degrees.

Adding to the uncomfortable temperatures Wednesday will be high humidity and dew points in the upper 60s, Gardner said.

"We really get the sticky air when the dew points get up this high," she said. "Be careful outside Wednesday with this extra heat and humidity, because most of us aren't going to be used to it quite yet."

Because of the wildfire burning in the Croatan National Forest, air quality will also be something to watch Wednesday, especially to the south and east of the Triangle. 

On Tuesday, thick smoke blanketed communities between New Bern and Havelock. The N.C. Division of Air Quality said Tuesday that particle pollution in the Triangle had increased but wasn't expected to rise to unhealthy levels.

Temperatures will drop a few degrees late in the week and over the weekend, with highs Saturday and Sunday topping out near 90. Afternoon thunderstorms will be possible throughout the weekend and first part of next week, Gardner said. 

"We're in that summer pattern now," she said.


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  • Ambygirl Jun 21, 2012

    Thank you will done got the crabs!! Couldn't have said it better myself! Some people will complaiin about anything!! And I, for one, appreciate all the weather information I can get.

    Let's have a sunshiney happy day folks!

  • Itchy Willy Jun 20, 2012

    I don't understand the hate-filled comments about the weather snippets. If the weather doesn't affect you, why bother reading the story, or more so, why bother taking the time to comment on it?

    The weather is very important to most people, and to know it is going to be 94 with a dew point of 88 means a lot to me when it was 80 and a dew point of 35 just a couple of days ago.

    Keep it up.

    @ iprep4life the word is sensationalism.

  • fatchanceson Jun 20, 2012

    More sensasionalism... If you can't see that... you're part of the problem... NOT the solution.

  • spoonman Jun 20, 2012

    gotta have something to be mad about!

  • Southern Discomfort Jun 20, 2012

    "It's the South. It's summer. It's hot. Move along. No news here."

    Tell that to those who are delivering food and visiting the elderly, and shut-ins who may not have air-conditioning.

  • TeresaBee Jun 20, 2012

    asocha2, now what is so wrong with ESPN being dominated by The Yankees? lol

  • TAILG8R2000 Jun 20, 2012

    EXACTLY! move if you don't like it. go to a pool or do something else. I tend to use our location close to the beach to go a lot =) you should try it!

    asocha2: Counting the days until summer is OVER!!!
    I've never understood people that hate it here and don't move. It's the south, it's warm and that's what some of us like about living here.

  • gnewsome1 Jun 20, 2012

    It's hot but not nearly as hot as being in a tobacco field. Glad I am not doing that any more.

  • nascar33 Jun 20, 2012

    "asocha2: Counting the days until summer is OVER!!!"

    I've never understood people that hate it here and don't move. It's the south, it's warm and that's what some of us like about living here.

  • asocha2 Jun 20, 2012

    I hate summer. Nothing but heat and humidity, bugs, hurricanes, grass cutting every week and no good sports on TV. Baseball is ok but my team is garbage (Oakland A's) and ESPN is dominated by the Yankees. Give me snow, freezing temperatures, Christmas, UNC basketball, New your Knick basketball and Redskins football. Counting the days until summer is OVER!!!