A Texas Weather Record Held Since 1933 Was Broken Last Month
In the late 1800's, officials in Texas started keeping detailed records of the weather. While not as precise as today's record-keeping, the data does give us a clue as to what kind of temperatures, precipitation, wind speeds, and more were like more than a hundred years ago. That kind of information is essential when it comes to identifying both short and long-term weather trends.
Back in 1933, officials in Texas recorded an average December temperature of 53.3 degrees Fahrenheit - the 2nd highest ever recorded. Last month, the average temperature in Texas was 58.7 - making it the 2nd warmest December on record in the Lone Star State. 1889 still holds the current record, but not by much. According to a report from KETK, that year - the average temperature in December was a sweltry 59.
That may not seem like anything to write home about as Texas usually experiences very mild winters in most of the state, but that's 12 degrees above "normal" and it's something to take note of - especially when you factor in the ongoing drought. As of the beginning of this month, at least 80% of the state is experiencing "moderate" drought conditions - and a full 55% had "severe" drought.
The unusually warm December coupled with high winds and dry conditions have Texas officials worried about wildfires spreading rapidly across the state. Farmers and ranchers are also concerned that the strange and dry weather could affect crop yield and food supplies.