Carroll County Times
Carroll County

Wild weather: A month-by-month chronicle of odd Maryland weather events in last five years

In 30 years of record keeping, National Weather Service volunteer weather observer Bobby Miller had never recorded a 100-degree temperature at his observation station near Millers.

Then came July 22, 2011. His thermometer read 102 degrees, shattering the previous record high of 99 degrees.

During the last five years, stretches of extreme weather have wiped out many noteworthy records that had held up for decades in Maryland.

Here's a look at notable extreme weather in Maryland that led to records being broken in each month during the last five years.


The event: Earlier this year, torrential rains and severe thunderstorms plagued the region in an unusually unsettled day Jan. 31. Water releases from Duckett Dam caused an evacuation of the historic portion of Laurel. A rare winter tornado watch was issued for the region.

The record: Many areas saw record daily rainfall for Jan. 31. More than 4 inches of rain fell in Mount Airy and New Market.



The event: Back-to-back blizzards clobbered central Maryland, including Carroll County, in 2010. Between 22 and 28 inches of snow fell during the first storm Feb. 5. Four days later a second storm dropped more than 18 inches of snow in Carroll.

The record: The storms helped shatter snow records throughout the mid-Atlantic. Baltimore received 77 inches of snow in the winter of 2009-10. It averages 18.2 inches of snow per winter.


The event: It was downright balmy in March of 2012. There were 11 days with highs of 70 degrees or warmer in central Maryland.

The record: The unusually warm period led to the warmest March on record at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport. The average temperature for March was 56.8 degrees, which was 10 degrees warmer than historical averages for the month.



The event: Typically, 90 degree days wait until at least late April in central Maryland. Not on April 6, 2010. The high temperature soared to 90 degrees.

The record: Record highs were shattered on back-to-back days at BWI on April 5-6, 2010. It was 84 April 5 and 90 April 6, the second-earliest 90-degree day in the calendar year at BWI. It was 90 degrees March 29, 1945.


The event: A thunderstorm produced 2.29 inches of rain at BWI Airport May 26, 2009. That's more than half the average rain total for the entire month of May.

The record: The 2.29 inches of rain was a daily record and the fourth-highest total ever recorded in May.

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The event: A scorching summer kicks off with three days of 98 degrees or warmer weather in Baltimore in the first nine days of June 2011.

The record: Three daily record highs were set during that period at BWI Airport: 98 degrees June 1, 99 degrees June 8 and 100 degrees June 9.


The event: A relentless heat wave produced three straight days of triple-digit heat at BWI Airport in 2011. It was 100 degrees July 21, 106 degrees July 22 and 102 degrees July 23.

The record: The July 22 and 23 temperatures were record daily highs at BWI. Miller's 102-degree high temperature July 22 was a record high for any day going back 30 years in his records.


The event: Hurricane Irene delivered a glancing blow to central Maryland Aug. 27, 2011. Wind gusts of more than 50 mph were felt throughout the county, including gusts of 57-61 mph in the Hampstead and Manchester areas.

The record: Hurricane Irene was the 10th billion-dollar natural disaster of 2011, breaking the record at the time for billion-dollar disasters in a year nationwide.


The event: A powerful coastal storm became a record breaker by dropping 10-15 inches of rain in portions of the mid-Atlantic Sept. 30, 2010. BWI Airport recorded 6.02 inches of rain.

The record: The 6.02 inches of rain is the most rain ever recorded in a single day at BWI Airport in September and the second-most precipitation for any day on record.


The event: Superstorm Sandy pummeled the New Jersey and New York shorelines, then pushed westward, dropping more than 4 inches of rain throughout central Maryland.

The record: Miller recorded a barometric pressure reading of 28.41 inches on his Nimbus barometer during Sandy. That's lower than his previous record of 28.61 inches recorded during the March 1993 Superstorm.


The event: Unusually dry. That's the best way to describe November 2012 in central Maryland. A docile period followed the landfall of Superstorm Sandy. Just 0.71 inches of precipitation fell during the month.

The record: The 0.71 inches of precipitation was the driest November in the 21st century at BWI Airport.



The event: More than a foot of snow fell throughout Carroll as a powerful coastal storm pushed through the region Dec. 19, 2009.

The record: Miller recorded a record 19 inches of snow for a December storm. The 20.5 inches that fell at BWI Airport was also a record.