CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) — Record rain hammered New England in September, and the 22News Storm Team is Working for You with an explanation as to why that was.
September saw heavy rainfall and floods with impacts from Hurricane Lee and Tropical Storm Ophelia, and just yesterday some cities received as much as four-and-a-half inches of rain.
This brought our rainfall totals for the month well over the three-point-nine-inch average. This can mainly be attributed to how much intense rain we’ve been seeing from coastal and tropical storms.
Michael Rawlins from the Climate System Research Center says that more extreme weather events are likely in the future. “This is a hallmark of a warming climate that you’re going to see more extremes as the climate warms. The Northeast U.S. has seen approximately a seventy-percent increase in the number of extreme precipitation events,” he explained.
This summer was a prime example of how the warming climate has affected rainfall totals, as the U.S. had the wettest summer on record. Western Massachusetts in particular had almost ten inches of rain in July alone, almost tripling the average seen at Westover Airforce Base in Chicopee. Those summer conditions crept into fall as well.
September was a little wetter than expected and put a damper on outdoor activities with the flooding of fields and roads. Now October isn’t supposed to be any wetter than average but we cannot rule more rain out of the forecast.
The Climate Prediction Center has forecasted above-average rainfall for the Midwest to central East Coast. While that seemingly puts New England in the clear, we will see warmer-than-average temperatures in October.