Summer won’t take the hint: Temperature records fall in DC area

High-temperature records fell at all three D.C.-area airports by noon on Wednesday as summer weather hangs on like a guest who doesn’t know the party’s over. A hot, sweaty guest.

The National Weather Service said Wednesday that at 11 a.m., Dulles International Airport reported a temperature of 91 degrees, while BWI Marshall hit 92. And, at noon, Reagan National Airport reached 93.

Those are all records for Oct. 2; the previous records at all three airports was 89, set in 1986.

Later Wednesday afternoon, the weather service announced that all three airports broke their records for the hottest October day ever: Reagan National was at 98 at about 3:06, breaking the D.C. record of 96 set on Oct. 5, 1941; BWI Marshall hit 98 by 1 p.m., breaking the record of 97, also set Oct. 5, 1941, and Dulles reached 96 shortly before 4 p.m., breaking the record of 94 set Oct. 9, 2007.

Wednesday was also the 62nd day of the year with temperatures of 90 or higher, which Storm Team 4 meteorologist Lauryn Ricketts said put 2019 in third place on the list for most such days, behind 2010 and 1980, which are tied for first with 67.

The typical temperature for the area during this time of year is a high of 70 degrees for the afternoon.

This year saw the fourth-driest September on record and the third-warmest. The weather service said the recent high temperatures and a lack of rain have led to a flash drought in a large part of the region, including D.C. and parts of the Maryland and Virginia suburbs.

“The drought is making the leaves fall off, and so they’re just not going to be there for color to look at,” John Seiler, Virginia Tech professor of forestry in the college of natural resources and environment, told WTOP.


Wednesday night: Clear and mild; lows upper 60s to low 70s.

Thursday: Increasing clouds, still very warm. Scattered shower possible. Highs between 84 to 89 degrees.

Friday: Mostly sunny and windy. Highs between 67 to 73 degrees.

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Rick Massimo

Rick Massimo came to WTOP, and to Washington, in 2013 after having lived in Providence, R.I., since he was a child. He's the author of "A Walking Tour of the Georgetown Set" and "I Got a Song: A History of the Newport Folk Festival."

Abigail Constantino

Abigail Constantino started her journalism career writing for a local newspaper in Fairfax County, Virginia. She is a graduate of American University and The George Washington University.

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