July’s been dry, but it’s not a record-breaker
Despite an arid stretch with scorching temperatures in the 30s, Toronto did not break the record for the driest July.
The record was set in 1957 with 11.4 mm of rain, but that mark was passed on Saturday evening alone, when four hours of showers delivered 13.2 mm.
Prior to Saturday, the city had received a mere 4.4 mm of rain in the entire month.
The showers were followed by a three-hour thunderstorm early Monday, which caused several power outages throughout the city.
However, the rainfall tally since the start of the month remains well below the July average of 74.4 mm.
“In a cool, dry month, it wouldn’t have been nearly as noticeable,” said Dave Phillips, senior climatologist at Environment Canada.
Phillips called this morning’s storm “the million dollar rain.”
“I know I got soaked this morning walking from the GO train to my office,” he said, “but I couldn’t care less.”
Monday’s storm also brought cooler weather to Toronto, prompting the city to cancel an extreme heat alert that was posted five days ago.
Phillips says a weak cold front came through the city on Sunday, bringing the humidex values down to the low 30s — relatively comfortable weather compared with muggy air we were experiencing last week.
“People must have felt they were in the Caribbean,” he said.
While the rain will provide some moisture for dehydrated vegetation, it won’t give us green lawns, Phillips said.
“We need a monsoon to solve the problem and this is not a monsoon,” he said, adding that the recent storm is not a trend but isolated activity.
More showers are expected throughout Monday with an expected high of 28 C.
There is also 30 per cent chance of showers Tuesday and a possibility of rain Thursday but the forecast for upcoming long weekend looks dry and sunny, with temperatures in the low 30s.
- Amanda Kwan, with files from Aleysha Haniff