Possibly worst summer set to follow coolest July for years

 

IRELAND COULD be on course for one of the worst summers in living memory if below average temperatures and heavy rainfall continue until the end of August.

Met Éireann recorded the coolest July in many years with many weather stations reporting plenty of rain but very little sunshine.

At 13 degrees, the mean temperature recorded at Malin Head last month was 1.3 degrees below average, the lowest recorded there in 40 years. Most of the country’s other stations reported their coolest July in at least 10 to 24 years.

The monthly minimum temperature at Johnstown Castle, Co Wexford, was recorded at 7.4 degrees on July 12th, the lowest recorded in any year since 1986. Other areas in the west, southwest, south and north experienced their lowest minimum temperatures in eight to 16 years.

Meteorological officer Ruth Coughlan said yesterday that July was “a lot cooler than expected”. She said a clearer picture would emerge once the Poulter Index, a system used by meteorologists for quantifying the summer, is calculated .

If the weather continued to be poor in August, “it could be in the top five of the worst summers we’ve had in Ireland in the last 50 years”, Ms Coughlan added.

The highest temperature in July was recorded at Dublin’s Phoenix Park on July 23rd, where it reached 24.3 degrees. At 4.3 degrees, the lowest air temperature was recorded at Markree, Co Sligo, on the 12th.

Maximum temperatures were also below average. Roche’s Point recorded a high of 19.4 degrees, the lowest reported since 1980. Sherkin Island’s 19.7 degrees was the lowest since 1994*. A majority of other maximum temperatures in the west and north were the lowest in five to 24 years.

Ireland saw higher than average rainfall levels last month. The highest total, 169.1mm, was recorded at Valentia Observatory and the lowest total of 76.2mm was recorded at Carlow.

The highest daily rainfall was recorded at Valentia on July 31st, when 32.1mm fell. The number of rain days (with 1mm or more) were on or above average, ranging from 14 days of rain in the southeast to over 20 in the southwest.

Sunshine totals were all below expected norms with the average percentage values ranging from 67 per cent at Knock Airport to 89 per cent at Casement Aerodrome.

While the station at Dublin Airport recorded the most sunshine with just under 138 hours, it was still its dullest July since 2003.

IN NUMBERS:

24.3 degreesHighest temperature recorded in July was recorded at Dublin’s Phoenix Park on July 23rd

UpSales of peat briquettes are up, while fresh salad sales have dropped 6 per cent.

7.4 degrees Minimum monthly temperature recorded at Johnstown Castle, Co Wexford

15%Drop in the sale of ice while ice-cream sales have remained flat

169.1mmThe highest level of rainfall recorded at Valentia Observatory on July 31st

13 degreesMean temperature for the month recorded at Malin Head, the lowest recorded there in 40 years

Sales down:sales of garden furniture and summer footwear such as sandals have been hit

€660the average price of a week in the sun

* This article was amended to correct an error