Unofficially, summer 2013 will go down as perhaps the wettest on record in the Philadelphia region, borne out by rainfall totals from Chester County.
From June 1 to Aug. 31, the National Weather Service at Mount Holly, N.J., recorded 22.18 inches of rainfall, according to Jim Bunker, an observation program leader at the facility. It rained 10.56 inches in June, a stunning 13.24 inches in July and 5.91 inches in August, he said in an interview Friday.
That is in stark contrast to the normal amount of precipitation in those three months of 11.28 inches in Philadelphia, Bunker said. Although he indicated that the rainfall was the most recorded in the city, he could not find the previous maximum figure.
The region has experienced 36.55 inches of rain in 2013, significantly above the normal amount of 28.76 inches, Bunker said.
Why all the rain?
“We have had a persistent trough set up over us. And with that, we’ve been getting a good southerly flow of air that rings a lot of rain,” Bunker said. Warm, moist air is circulated from the Gulf of Mexico, and that air has collided with an unstable weather mass in the upper atmosphere over the Mid-Atlantic.
“It is just a pattern that lends itself to more active weather — storms, thunderstorms, etc.,” said Kristin Kline, a weather service meteorologist at the New Jersey station, who noted computer models show the pattern would linger over the region for at least another seven to 10 days.
In Chester County, records from the Delaware Environmental Observing System show a similar amount of rainfall.
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