August 18 Weather History

...1779... William Dunbar, a pioneer weather observer in the state of Louisiana, described a hurricane eye passing over New Orleans. Dunbar wrote after the storm, "[the hurricane] was the most dreadful ever remembered...the village presents the most pitiful sight".

...1909... Bagdad, in San Bernardino County of California, reported no precipitation for 993 consecutive days from this date to May 6, 1912,

...1910... The 'Big Blow Up' of forest fires in Idaho finally came to an end. A record dry August fueled the 1736 fires which burned 3 million acres, destroying 6 billion board feet of timber and claimed the lives of 85 persons, 78 of which were firefighters. The entire town of Wallace was consumed. The smoke spread 1/3 of the way around the world an produced some 'dark days' in the U.S. and Canada. The forest fires prompted issuance of federal fire protection laws.

...1925... During the late morning hours a severe hailstorm struck southeastern Iowa completely destroying crops along a path six to ten miles wide and 75 miles long. The hail also injured and killed poultry and livestock, and caused a total of 2.5 million dollars damage. The hailstorm flattened fields of corn to such an extent that many had to leave their farms in search of other work. It was one of the worst hailstorms of record for the nation.

...1936... Iowa had its hottest ever August afternoon, with the average temperature for 113 stations being 106.5 degrees

...1955... .81 inches of rain fell in one hour at Newport, Rhode Island, breaking the old record of .28 inches set in 1948.

...1957... At Newport, Rhode Island the low temperature dipped to 52 degrees, setting the record low temp for the date. It was later tied in 1979.

...1983... Hurricane Alicia ravaged southeastern Texas. The hurricane caused more than three billion dollars property damage, making it one of the costliest hurricanes in the history of the U.S. Just thirteen persons were killed, but 1800 others were injured. The hurricane packed winds to 130 mph as it crossed Galveston Island, and spawned twenty-two tornadoes in less than 24 hours as it made landfall.

...1986... Newport, Rhode Island received 1.02 inches of rain and a low barometric pressure of 29.63 inches of mercury as Tropical Sotrm passed off shore to the southeast.

...1987... Thirteen cities in the eastern U.S. reported record high temperatures for the date, including Newport, Rhode Island with a temperature of 93 degrees, breaking the old record of 90 degrees set in 1956, Orlando FL with a reading of 98 degrees,  Portland ME with a high of 94 degrees and  Newark NJ reached 90 degrees for the thirty-sixth time of the year, their second highest total of record.

...1988... At Newport, Rhode Island the barometric pressure fell to 29.45 inches, breaking the previous record of 29.57 inches that was set back in 1958.  Twenty-two cities, from the Carolinas to the Upper Ohio Valley, reported record high temperatures for the date, pushing the total number of daily record highs since the first of June above the 1100 mark. Afternoon highs of 102 degrees at Greensboro NC and 105 degrees at Raleigh NC equaled all-time records. Evening thunderstorms in Montana produced wind gusts to 75 mph at Scobey.

...1989... Thunderstorms over the Middle Atlantic Coast Region and the Upper Ohio Valley produced torrential rains in eastern Virginia during the late morning and afternoon hours. Totals ranged up to twelve inches at Yorktown. Williamsburg VA was deluged with 10.78 inches of rain between 6 AM and 10 AM, with 6.72 inches reported in just two hours. Flash flooding caused nearly twelve million dollars damage in Accomack County VA. Early evening thunderstorms in the Central High Plains Region produced walnut size hail and wind gusts to 80 mph around Casper WY. Thunderstorms produced locally heavy rains in the Yellowstone Park area, causing fifteen mudslides.

...2005... An F3 tornado tore through Stoughton, Wisconsin, killing 1 and injuring 18. 28 tornadoes occurred in Wisconsin on this day, setting a new state daily record. The previous record was 24 set on May 8, 1988.

...2009... The heat index rose of 97 degrees at Newport, Rhode Island, breaking the record of 96 degrees set in 1987.

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