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Weather History: July 8: Record temps, snow, tornadoes, storms, wind & flooding

Listed are Meteorological events that happened on July 8th:

Today is one of just two days in the late Spring and Summer season (May through August) that hail has not officially been recorded at Cheyenne, WY. The only other day in that time period is August 21st.


Several men and horses were killed by heatstroke as temperatures reach an estimated 100° in the United Kingdom. This was probably the United Kingdom's hottest day since the Medieval Warm Period estimated between 1100-1250.


Hail piled up to a depth of 34 inches at Canterbury, CT. The melting ice caused significant flooding.


Frost was reported in low-lying areas throughout New England as the year without a summer continued.


Severe thunderstorms in Swift and Brown Counties of Minnesota produced high winds and intense hail. Nearly every home in Sleepy Eye, MN was moved off its foundation by the storm which came during the night.


The remnants of the July 5th hurricane that struck the Gulf Coast drifted north and east near Birmingham, AL. The Magic City received 8.84 inches of rain in 24 hours, which is their all-time record. Another hurricane would make landfall near Pensacola, FL later in the month and dump more heavy rain on Birmingham, where the monthly rainfall total reached 20.16 inches, a monthly record that still stands.


The greatest heat wave on record gets underway across Michigan. Grand Rapids saw high temperatures at or above 100° on six of the next seven days, including an all-time record high of 108° on the 13th. Lansing will peak at 101° on the 14th.

Temperatures soared to 105° at Toronto, Ontario Canada on three consecutive days through the 10th.


The town of York, NE was deluged with 13.15 inches of rain in 24 hours to establish a state record.


Three people were killed and six others were injured when lightning struck a walnut tree near Mayo, FL. The nine people were stringing tobacco under a tin shed when the bolt hit the nearby tree.


Cool Canadian air settled in across the Great Lakes region. Many record low temperatures were set including: Alpena, MI: 38°, Youngstown, OH: 44°, Muskegon, MI: 45°, Cleveland, OH: 45°, Detroit, MI: 45°, Pittsburgh, PA: 45°, Grand Rapids, MI: 46°, South Bend, IN: 47°, Buffalo, NY: 47°, Chicago, IL: 48°, Columbus, OH: 49°, Dayton, OH: 49°, Erie, PA: 50°, Indianapolis, IN: 51° and Cincinnati, OH: 51°.


Thunderstorms in the central U.S. produced wind gusts to 90 mph at Waterloo, IA, 6.38 inches of rain at Tescott, KS, and 25 minutes of golf ball size hail at Drummond, OK.


Many cities in the north central and northeastern U.S. reported record high temperatures for the date. Beckley, WV equaled their all-time record with a high of 93°. Other daily record included: Nashville, TN: 105°, Louisville, KY: 103°, Paducah, KY: 102°, Charleston, WV: 102°, Huntington, WV: 102°, Williamsport, PA: 102°, Jackson, KY: 101°, Knoxville, TN: 101°, Oak Ridge, TN: 101°, Harrisburg, PA: 101°, Bristol, TN: 100°, Akron, OH: 99°, Cleveland, OH: 99°, Youngstown, OH: 99°, Avoca, PA: 99°, Pittsburgh, PA: 99°, Mansfield, OH: 98°, Ste. St. Marie, MI: 97°, Asheville, NC: 96°, Buffalo, NY: 96°, Binghamton, NY: 95°, Elkins, EV: 94° and Erie, PA: 94°.

Afternoon and evening thunderstorms spawned seven tornadoes in Adams and Logan counties of eastern Colorado, and hail caused $2.3 million dollars damage in Adams, Logan and Washington counties.


Many cities in the central and western U.S. reported record high temperatures for the date. The high of 103° at Denver, CO equaled their record for July, and a 110° reading at Rapid City, SD equaled their all-time record high. Denver reported a record five straight days of 100 degree heat, and Scottsbluff, NE reported a record eight days in a row of 100 degree temperatures; with this day reaching 108°. Other daily records included; Las Vegas, NV: 113°, Victorville, CA: 111°, Valentine, NE: 108°, Sheridan, WY: 106°, Grand Junction, CO: 104°, Casper, WY: 102°, Sioux Falls, SD: 102° and Colorado Springs, CO: 97°.


0.95 inches of rain fell in 15 minutes along with 62 mph wind gusts at Washington, D.C. Over 2 inches of rain fell in just 20 minutes across parts of northern Virginia.


Severe thunderstorms produced a very long downburst at Concordia, KS. Peak one minute sustained winds reached 108 mph at Concordia Airport and exceeded 60 mph for over 20 minutes. Six people were injured and damage was estimated at $25 million dollars.


A cold front moved into northwest Iowa developing thunderstorms by the late afternoon hours. Golf ball to baseball size hail pounded the area around Schleswig in Crawford County causing total crop destruction in the area. The largest hail reported was at Little Sioux in Harrison County where three inch diameter hail destroyed crops. In Dow City of Crawford County, 85 mph winds leveled a farm. The other major event with these thunderstorms was the heavy rainfall. 3 to 7 inches of rain was common with Manilla and Denison receiving about 7.50 inches of rain. In Crawford County, damage from flash flooding was estimated at $15 million dollars. Severe flood damage occurred in 50 homes in Denison and 36 in Dow City. Monona County also received rains of 4 to 9 inches from Onawa east into Harrison County. The heavy rainfall was a prelude of record flooding to come on the Raccoon and Des Moines River, during the Great Flood of 1993. This was the 37th day of rain in the past 40 days in Iowa.

Massive flooding rocked portions of eastern South Dakota. Residents were cleaning up from tremendous flooding which occurred from July 3rd to July 7th. Flash flooding resulted from thunderstorms which moved across southeast South Dakota dumping 3 to 6 inch rains on already saturated ground. In Mt. Vernon, 90% of the homes were damaged by flood waters as 2 to 3 feet of water rushed down Main Street. At least seven bridges were washed out in Hanson and McCook counties and many more were damaged or under water. Water covered fields for mile after mile in McCook, Miner, and Lake Counties. In Madison, 2,000 residents including a nursing home had to be evacuated. At least 50 people were brought out their homes on boat with several people having to be rescued. Near Lake Madison the water rose to the roofs of some homes.

An F1 tornado touched down 3 miles north of Platteville, WI. Three houses, two barns, and two sheds were damaged. Trees were blown down as well. Another F1 tornado occurred just east of Beetown, WI. It damaged a mobile home, car, pole shed, and nearby trees.

Columbia, MO received 5.18 inches of rain over 24 hours ending on this date.

Severe thunderstorms moved across northern parts of Oklahoma, creating widespread wind damage. Most of the damage was reported in the Newkirk and Blackwell areas of Kay County, where large trees where toppled.


One of the worst flash flood events in Las Vegas, NV history occurred on this date damaging roads and buildings, sweeping away vehicles and bringing the entire city almost to a standstill from late morning through late afternoon. Thunderstorms formed over the elevated west side of the valley and began dumping heavy rain between 10 and 11am PDT. The storms slowly drifted to the east producing rainfall amounts over 1.5 inches across a substantial part of the metro area and some localized amounts topping 3 inches. The downpours forced closure of McCarran International Airport for about one hour and arriving planes were diverted to Los Angeles. Most of the rain ended by noon, but not before heavy runoff turned surface roads and washes into raging rivers carving a path of destruction toward the lower east side. Early during the event, a roof collapsed on a motorcycle dealership under a heavy downpour but that was only a precursor to more significant damage to come throughout the day. Hundreds of motorists were forced to abandon their vehicles and helplessly watch as their cars were partially submerged or carried away. Numerous homeowners could do nothing but save a few items as flood waters poured into ground level floors and basements. Perhaps the most graphic display of property destruction occurred at the Miracle Mile Mobile Home Park which is located near the edge of Flamingo Wash on the east side of the valley. The rushing water eroded the unlined banks so extensively that at least one mobile home fell into the wash and four others were destroyed. Electricity was knocked out for a few hours to 2,500 customers and some gas lines were broken by the force of the water. The Las Vegas Strip also saw significant flooding with the most notable damage occurring in the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace where two feet of water damaged over 60 stores and forced evacuation of the luxury shopping mall. Over 200 swift water rescues were performed before flood waters receded and it is remarkable that only one drowning occurred. A homeless man's body was pulled from debris in the Flamingo Wash early in the afternoon. Several Clark County Flood Control gauges recorded water levels in area washes and the Gowan Detention Basin filled up to 22 feet deep, one foot below its capacity. An estimated $25 million dollars in damage occurred to both public and private property. On July 20th, President Clinton declared the event a federal disaster.

Three inches of rain fell at Las Vegas, NV from a monsoon thunderstorm, most of it in just one hour. The storm was the worst in Vegas in many years, turning streets into rivers, washing away bridges and cars and killing two people. McCarran International Airport was closed for an hour. Many tourists took refuge in the casinos along the strip.

Heavy rains also caused flooding at San Jacinto, Palm Springs, Cathedral City and Palm Desert, CA.


An F3 tornado struck northeast of Milan, Italy uprooting trees, damaging cars and causing several injuries.


A weak F0 tornado swirls across a farm near Ste-Jeanne-d'Arc, Quebec Canada. It split trees and lifted several buildings from their foundations.

What may be the world's highest dew point temperature was recorded at Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, on the Persian Gulf. A dew point of 95° was recorded at 3pm while the air temperature was 108°. The apparent temperature at that time would have been an unimaginable 172°.


A strong microburst produced straight line wind damage in the Hurricane Deck and Osage Beach areas of Camden County in central Missouri. The winds were estimated at 80 to 90 mph and did extensive damage to docks and boats in the area.


A tornado passed through the city of Dickinson, ND, on the far south side, mainly just south of the Heart River. No witnesses spoken to actually saw the tornado. From their eye witness accounts, and from video obtained by the Dickinson Police Department, it is likely that this was a rain-wrapped tornado, and very difficult if not impossible to see. The tornado occurred before sunset, yet it was described as being as dark as night during the event. Over 450 structures were damaged, of which nearly 100 were declared completely destroyed or beyond repair. Numerous vehicles were damaged or destroyed, some were on their roofs. Power lines were snapped, knocking out power to most of Dickinson, and tree damage was extensive. Two minor injuries were reported, with no deaths. The worst damage surveyed was between the Heart River and roughly 8th Street Southwest and 8th Street Southeast in southern Dickinson. Of that damage, the absolute worst corresponded to middle EF3. From that it was determined that peak wind speeds in the tornado were on the order of 150 mph.

An intense Antarctic cold front brought heavy snow, hail, strong winds and unusually cold temperatures to southern Peru. The severe conditions were blamed for the deaths of more than 150 children due to cold related illnesses. Low temperatures in some areas have dropped to -22°.


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

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