Weather Extremes

Extreme Weather In May

The Hottest and Coldest Days on Record

 Because of how the Earth tilts on its axis in May, the weather begins to change all over the globe. In the Northern Hemisphere (above the Equator) temperatures increase, warming up the climate as this part of the planet faces towards the Sun in Spring and Summer. The Southern Hemisphere cools as it leans away from the Sun at this time of year.


The opposite occurs in Autumn and Winter. That is to say, the Southern Hemisphere tilts to the Sun, warming that region and the Northern Hemisphere is tilted away from the Sun. That caused regions above the Equator to experience cooler weather in December, January and February. The month of May, however, is between seasons at both ends of the world.


The Temperature In May Still Sets Records

 Although May is part of Spring, the time of year when temperatures are warming up, or cooling down, depending on your geographic location, extremes do occur. The hottest temperature recorded in May was 53.5C (128.3F) in Mohenjo-Daro, Pakistan on May 26, 2010. That mark was tied on May 28, 2017 in Turbat, Pakistan making them the hottest places on Earth in May.


Here are the other ‘hot spots’ for the month:


51.0C (123.8F)           Phalodi and Rajasthan, India                                 May 19, 2016

50.8C (123.4F)           Sohar, Oman                                                 May 2009

50.8C (123.4F)           Qurayyat, Oman                                           May 30, 2017

47.2C (117.0F)           Myinmu, Myanmar                                      May 14, 2010

45.1C (113.2F)           Rajshahi, Bangladesh                                               May 30, 1972

42.7C (108.9F)           Con Cuong and Tuong Duong, Vietnam    May 12, 1966/May 30, 2015

42.2C (108.0F)           Tuguegarao and Cagayan Valley, PhilippinesMay 11, 1969

40.2C (104.0F)           Taitung County, Taiwan                              May 9, 2004


The coldest temperature recorded in May was:


-11.1C (12.0F)                        Mauna Kea, Hawaii                                      May 17, 1979


May Is Also Part of Tornado Season

 Tornado season in the United States starts in January and can last as long as August or later. However, the peak season is typically complete in May. Several weather records are associated with tornados but only one extreme occurred during this month and holds the title of Fastest Wind Ever Recorded. A Doppler On Wheels (DOW) radar unit documented the observations.


The event was a tornado that travelled between Oklahoma City and Moore, Oklahoma on May 3, 1999. The DOW clocked 3-second wind gusts from this storm at 484 km/h (302 mph) earning it the World Record distinction. The Fujita-Pearson Scale measures tornado strength up to 379 mph. A storm with wind speeds that high would be classified as an F6.


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