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Austin just had its hottest July ever. Could this summer break an all-time record?

Water misters help relieve patrons during summertime heat at Guero's Taco Bar on South Congress Avenue.
Gabriel C. Pérez
/
KUT
Water misters help relieve patrons during summertime heat at Guero's Taco Bar on South Congress Avenue.

It's now official: This July was the hottest ever recorded for the Austin area – and the city's second hottest month ever, behind August 2011.

And this heat is probably not done breaking records. With August still ahead, there's a chance this could become the hottest summer in Austin’s recorded history.

By any measure, July was brutal. The month averaged 90.8 degrees, only the second time since records started that July has broken the 90-degree average (the other time was last summer). Both nights and days were far above average, but it's the high daytime temps that many will likely remember – including a record-breaking 11 days straight of 105 degrees or higher.

It doesn’t end there.

As of Aug. 1, Austin was in its 25th consecutive day of hitting 100 degrees or more. The city's record streak for triple-digit heat – again set during the brutal summer of 2011 – is 27 days in a row.

Will we beat that record this week? Signs point to yes.

“The current forecast is for us to remain reaching 100 degrees each day in the next week,” said Matt Brady, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in New Braunfels. “So that record is likely to fall.”

Could this summer end up hotter than 2011?

This summer is currently on track to become the Austin’s third-hottest ever recorded, Brady said.

You won’t be surprised to hear that the city's hottest summer ever is still 2011, which had an average temperature of 89.5 degrees June through August.

The second hottest summer was last year’s, with an average temperature of 88.8 degrees, part of a trend of hotter summers brought about in large part by human-caused climate change.

Could this summer reach or surpass either of those two? It depends on what happens this month.

“We could catch those [records] if August is very hot,” Brady said. “We’re at a degree behind 2011. But if we stay well above average, it's still possible we can catch it.”

And, at this point, more record-breaking heat does not seem out of the question.

Mose Buchele focuses on energy and environmental reporting at KUT. Got a tip? Email him at mbuchele@kut.org. Follow him on Twitter @mosebuchele.
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