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Weather History: August 26: Record temps, tropics, storms, wind & ‘Krakatoa’

Listed are Meteorological events that happened on August 26th:


A passenger train bound from Cincinnati, OH to Chicago, IL was derailed by a tornado in Dearborn, IN, injuring 30 people.


The Krakatoa Volcano exploded in the East Indies. The explosion was heard more than 2,500 miles away, and every barograph around the world recorded the passage of the air wave, up to seven times. Giant waves, 125 feet high and traveling 300 mph, devastated everything in their path, hurling ashore coral blocks weighing up to 900 tons, and killing more than 36,000 people. Volcanic ash was carried around the globe in 13 days producing blue and green suns in the tropics, and then vivid red sunsets in higher latitudes. The temperature of the earth was lowered one degree for the next two years, finally recovering to normal by 1888.


Snow flurries affected parts of Pennsylvania, New York and New England with snow observed as far south as Hartford, CT.


Peoria, IL registered a low temperature of 41°. This established a record for the month of August, although it has been tied twice since then. Daily low temperatures were established at Lincoln, IL with 37°; Decatur, IL: 44°; and Champaign, IL: 46°.


One inch of rain fell at Riverside, CA from a dying tropical cyclone.


A hurricane brushed New England with 80 mph winds reported at Blue Hill Observatory in Milton, MA. The pressure at Nantucket Island dropped to 28.71 inches. Boston, MA recorded their lowest barometric pressure reading ever at 29.26 inches.


San Francisco, CA had their heaviest 24-hour rainfall for August when 0.25 inches fell.


Niagara Falls, Ontario Canada recorded its hottest day on record as the mercury climbed to 100.9°.


A hurricane made landfall at Delray Beach, FL. Winds reached 153 mph at the Jupiter Lighthouse before the anemometer failed. The hurricane caused $45 million dollars damage to crops, and moved up the Georgia and South Carolina coast resulting in another $2 million dollars damage.


Late night severe thunderstorms associated with an unusually strong late summer cold front produced straight line winds of 100 mph around Chicago, IL and northwest Indiana. In Lake County, Indiana, high winds derailed a train near Crown Point, and left a canoe suspended among telephone lines.


China Lake Naval Air Station in California ended a streak of 47 consecutive days at or above 100°; their longest such streak on record.


An unusual weak tornado touched down briefly in the Hockley Hills near Kiana, AK, about 29 miles north of the Arctic Circle.


Showers and thunderstorms drenched northern Illinois during the morning and afternoon hours pushing August rainfall totals for Chicago, Moline and Peoria to new all-time highs for any month of the year. By the end of August, Chicago had received 17.10 inches of rain, which easily surpassed the previous record of 14.17 inches established in September 1961.


A dozen cities in Texas, Colorado and California reported record high temperatures for the date, including readings of 109° at Redding, CA, 106° at Wichita Falls, TX and 100° at Pueblo, CO.

Afternoon thunderstorms deluged Beaver, UT with more than an inch of rain in 20 minutes.


Anchorage, AK was soaked 4.12 inches of rain in 24 hours; smashing their previous 24 hour precipitation total of 2.10 inches. It also pushed their rainfall total for the month past their previous monthly record.


Hurricane Andrew made a second landfall near Burns Point, LA as a Category 3 hurricane. Morgan City, LA recorded sustained winds of 92 mph with a peak gust of 108 mph. Hammond, LA was deluged with 11.92 inches of rain. Late on the 25th, one of Andrew's rainbands spawned an F3 tornado which tracked 9 miles from Laplace to Reserve, LA. This tornado killed two people and injured 32 others. Six other people were killed as a result of the hurricane's second landfall and total damage was $1.8 billion dollars. As Andrew moved inland and weakened, he spawned 47 tornadoes from this date through the 28th from the South to the Mid Atlantic states.

Elko, NV dipped to 20° to set not only a new record low temperature for the day but also a new record low for the month of August. The old monthly record low for August was 24° set on the 8/30/1932.


Severe thunderstorms developed ahead of a slow moving cold front in northwest Iowa. High winds affected several counties and one inch diameter hail was reported in O'Brien County at Sanborn. Shortly after midnight, strong winds of 75 mph or greater blew a police car across a street in Sanborn. These winds lasted 3 to 3 1/2 minutes. Hartley received some tree damage from 60 mph winds with one 22 inch diameter ash tree uprooted. Four buildings also had their windows broken out. In addition, a three stall garage had its roof blown about 100 yards into a bean field and a single car garage was completely blown away. What is amazing is that this garage had its door closed with a car inside. After the wind stopped, the garage was on the other side of a grove and the car was not scratched.

Butte, MT picked up 5 inches of heavy, early season snow.


The longest consecutive days without measurable rain ended at Boston, MA. The streak lasted 20 days beginning on 8/7.


Severe thunderstorms produced widespread wind damage over a large part of northwest Oklahoma. Several large trees were blown down, and roof damage occurred in and around Woodward. Wind speeds as high as 80 mph were measured.

A severe thunderstorm produced large and damaging hail at Cheyenne, WY during the evening. Hail up to the size of baseballs fell over especially the central and west parts of town producing widespread damage, particularly to roofs and automobiles. Total damage estimates exceeded $30 million dollars.

4.22 inches of rain fell at Nimes in southern France during a 30 hour period causing local flooding. Their average August rainfall is 1.77 inches.


A derecho associated with a cluster of severe thunderstorms affected parts of Michigan and states eastward to Washington, D.C. Strong winds left hundreds of thousands of customers without power, just weeks after the Great Blackout of 2003.

Fresno, CA received 0.07 of an inch of rain. This is rare since measurable rain has only fallen in 18 Augusts since 1887 at Fresno.


At 1 am EDT, maximum sustained winds had decreased to 70 mph and Katrina was again downgraded to a tropical storm. At 5 am EDT, the eye of Hurricane Katrina was located just offshore of southwestern Florida over the Gulf of Mexico about 50 miles north-northeast of Key West, FL. Maximum sustained winds had again increased to 75 mph and Katrina was upgraded again to a Category 1 hurricane.


The remnants of Hurricane Dean produced thunderstorms and heavy rain all over the San Diego Metro area in southern California. Two inches of rain fell in just 90 minutes at Escondido during the morning. During the afternoon, flash flooding occurred near Borrego Springs and Ocotillo Wells closing several roads.


Parts of the Canadian Maritimes saw record high temperatures. In Newfoundland, new marks were set at Badger: 81.9°, Corner Brook: 80.6° and Gander: 81.0°. In Labrador, Nain set a record high with 74°.


Check out my colleague Weather Examiners:

Baltimore, MD area weather with Tony Pann at

Orlando, FL area weather with Dr. Steve Oliver at

Houston, TX area weather & the weekly Weather America Newsletter with Larry Cosgrove at

NOAA Headlines Examiner with Dr. Steve Oliver and IPR at

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