Soaring Heat Sets Records, April 4th, 2011 (click to enlarge)
The Heat...
Dry line and Front bring very low humidity and strong gusty winds to 50 mph (click to enlarge)
...and the Dry. Individual values denote minimum afternoon relative humidity.
Blast Furnace Rips Through Valley
Triple Digit Heat, Very Strong Winds Arrive April 4, 2011

Quick Event Wrap
As advertised in our initial Spring Outlook issued in early March, a "front with intense drying behind it" surged through Deep South Texas on April 4th, bringing the first widespread triple digit heat to the Valley, which combined with very strong north winds gusting as high as 50 mph and humidity that fell near 10 percent from the mid Valley north and west to the brush country – areas already experiencing severe drought. As of this writing, significant wildfires had developed, perhaps a result of high awareness levels and burn bans. However, there was at least one instance of minor damage from the winds, in Zapata County, where some roof tiles blew off a building during the afternoon, and a grass fire spread to dozens of acres near Linn (Highway 281) between 7 PM and Midnight.  Peak wind gusts are provided in the table near the bottom of this page.

The heat burst brought record highs to the three major airports/observing locations in the Valley (below). Additional records may have fallen at other sites; high temperatures for cooperative locations throughout Deep South Texas and the Rio Grande Valley will be available on April 5th. The following statement summarizes the heat and records, as of April 4th at 5 PM:

     
 
PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT...UPDATED    
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BROWNSVILLE TX    
925 AM CDT TUE APR 5 2011         

...TRIPLE DIGIT HEAT COVERED MOST OF DEEP SOUTH TEXAS APRIL 4TH...        

NEARLY ALL OF THE RIO GRANDE VALLEY...AND PARTS OF THE RANCH COUNTRY  
OF DEEP SOUTH TEXAS REACHED THE TRIPLE DIGITS ON MONDAY. TEMPERATURES   
WARMED CONSIDERABLY AHEAD OF A COOLING FRONT AS NORTHWEST WINDS  
AHEAD OF THE FRONT ALLOWED TEMPERATURES TO SURGE  
TOWARD AND ABOVE RECORD LEVELS.  

LISTED BELOW ARE OBSERVATIONS FROM ACROSS DEEP SOUTH TEXAS 
TAKEN FROM VARIOUS SOURCES...UPDATED TO INCLUDE COOPERATIVE WEATHER  
OBSERVERS. RECORDS MAY NOT MATCH THE LONG TERM CLIMATE 
INFORMATION FOR HARLINGEN AND MCALLEN LISTED ELSEWHERE...AS THESE 
MAY INCLUDE A COMBINATION OF AIRPORT AND LONGER TERM COOPERATIVE 
OBSERVER RECORDS THAT MAY HAVE OCCURRED ON THE SAME CALENDAR DAY.       

CITY                    COUNTY             TYPE       HIGH TEMPERATURE    
BROWNSVILLE/SPI ARPT    CAMERON            ASOS       101*    
HARLINGEN/VALLEY ARPT   CAMERON            ASOS       101**    
MCALLEN/MILLER ARPT     CAMERON            ASOS       103***    
BAYVIEW/CAM CO ARPT     CAMERON            ASOS        97      
LA JOYA                 HIDALGO            COOP       104    
EDINBURG/INTL ARPT      HIDALGO            AWOS       103    
FALCON LAKE             STARR              RAWS       103    
REYNOSA/ARPT            TAMAULIPAS MEXICO             103    
LA JOYA                 HIDALGO            CWOP       102    
MCALLEN WATER PLANT     HIDALGO            COOP       102    
RIO GRANDE CITY         STARR              COOP       102    
SANTA ROSA              CAMERON            COOP       101    
MISSION                 HIDALGO            CWOP       101    
SAN MANUEL              HIDALGO            COOP       100    
EDINBURG                HIDALGO            COOP       100    
FALFURRIAS              BROOKS             COOP       100    
SANTA ANA NWR           HIDALGO            RAWS       100    
LINN/SAN MANUEL         HIDALGO            RAWS       100    
WESLACO                 HIDALGO            CWOP       100    
WESLACO/MID VLY ARPT    HIDALGO            AWOS        99             
FALCON DAM              STARR              COOP        99    
ZAPATA/ARPT             ZAPATA             AWOS        99    
NE BROWNSVILLE          CAMERON            CWOP        99    
MATAMOROS ARPT          TAMAULIPAS MEXICO              99    
FALFURRIAS/BROOKS ARPT  BROOKS             AWOS        99    
RAYMONDVILLE            WILLACY            COOP        98    
WESLACO                 HIDALGO            COOP        98    
HARLINGEN               CAMERON            COOP        98    
SARITA 7 E              KENEDY             COOP        98    
LAGUNA ATASCOSA NWR     CAMERON            RAWS        98    
ESCOBAS                 ZAPATA             CWOP        98    
HEBBRONVILLE            JIM HOGG           COOP        97    
ESCOBAS                 ZAPATA             COOP        97    
PORT MANSFIELD          WILLACY            COOP        96    
MERCEDES 6 SSE          HIDALGO            COOP        95    
HEBBRONVILLE ARPT       JIM HOGG           AWOS        95        

*   NEW RECORD. PREVIOUS RECORD WAS 94 SET IN 1918.  
**  NEW RECORD. PREVIOUS CALENDAR DAY RECORD WAS 100 SET IN 1955 AT
    AIRPORT LOCATION.    
*** NEW RECORD. PREVIOUS RECORD WAS 97 SET IN 2008 AT MILLER AIRPORT.         

LEGEND: 
ASOS...AUTOMATED SURFACE OBSERVING SYSTEM (NWS) 
AWOS...AUTOMATED WEATHER OBSERVING SYSTEM (FAA)    
COOP...COOPERATIVE WEATHER OBSERVER (NWS)
CWOP...CITIZENS WEATHER OBSERVING PROGRAM  
RAWS...REMOTE AUTOMATED WEATHER STATION
Peak Wind Gusts on April 4, 2011
City
County
Peak Gust
Bayview/Cameron Co. Arpt
Cameron
52 mph
Matamoros Arpt
Tamaulipas (Mexico)
51 mph
Harlingen/Valley Int'l Airport
Cameron
48 mph
Brownsville/SPI Int'l Airport
Cameron
46 mph
Laredo Int'l Airport
Webb
46 mph
McAllen/Miller Airport
Hidalgo
44 mph
South Padre Island Heliport
Cameron
44 mph
Edinburg Int'l Airport
Hidalgo
43 mph
Hebbronville/Jim Hogg Arpt
Jim Hogg
41 mph
Zapata/Zapata Co. Aprt
Zapata
41 mph
Port Mansfield/Harbormaster
Willacy
41 mph
Weslaco/Mid Valley Arpt
Hidalgo
40 mph
Falfurrias/Brooks Co. Arpt
Brooks
38 mph
Laguna Atascosa NWR (20 ft)
Cameron
32 mph
Falcon Lake RAWS (20 ft)
Starr
32 mph
Linn/San Manuel NWR (20 ft)
Hidalgo
32 mph
Santa Ana NWR (20 ft)
Hidalgo
28 mph

USA.gov is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.