Eintime Conversion for education and research 10-15-2009 @ 12:57:29
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Atypical July: AC off, clothes don't stick

By Donna Leinwand, USA TODAY

The South and Midwest have been experiencing record-low temperatures, turning summer topsy-turvy.

"It's more like spring or fall," Weather Channel lead meteorologist Chris Dolce said Monday.

Atlanta saw a record low of 61 degrees early Monday. And the daytime was much more pleasant than the usual 90 and humid, Dolce said.

"It just beautiful," he said from Atlanta. "It's not very often your clothes don't stick to you around here."

A wave of cool, dry air has settled over the East Coast and the South and has allowed the summer heat to escape, Dolce said. The cool temperatures could stay through the weekend if another shot of cold air from Canada refreshes the weather system, he said.

A cool summer is being felt in many states.

Anniston, Ala., woke up Monday to a crisp 55 degrees. Crossville, Tenn., dipped to 52. Dubuque, Iowa, recorded 49 degrees.

Meteorologist Gary Goggins of the National Weather Service in Birmingham, Ala., turned off his air conditioner and opened his windows Monday morning.

"If you stood outside long enough, you'd need a light jacket," he said.

The normal low temperature in Birmingham this time of year is 70 degrees and the normal high is 93, Goggins said.

But early Monday morning, the temperature at Birmingham Airport was 59, breaking a record of 60 set in 1947. The temperature never climbed above 83 — 10 degrees lower than normal. Montgomery's chill hit 59, breaking by four degrees the record 63 set in 1923, Goggins said.

An opposite weather pattern is heating up the West, Dolce said.

In Phoenix, temperatures have topped 110 degrees every day but one since July 10, said National Weather Service meteorologist Paul Iniguez. At night, temperatures remain in the 90s. The weather service has issued excessive heat warnings.

Iniguez expects temperatures to drop a degree or two a day, starting today.

Several cities broke heat records or tied existing ones Sunday. Albuquerque's 100 degrees tied its 1978 record. Brownsville, Texas, at 100 degrees, had not been so hot since 1918. Fresno, Calif., topped the charts with 112, which toppled the 111 record set in 1899.

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