Blast of warm air ties record high

Posted Monday, Mar. 04, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Monday's high of 88 tied a record for the day set on March 4, 1955, the National Weather Service reported.

But the early blast of summer didn't last long.

About sunset, a cold front arrived, and winds shifted northward. Temperatures were expected to drop into the 40s overnight.

Forecasters had figured that Monday's temperatures would be unusually warm, but they didn't forecast the record. The 88-degree reading resulted from strong southwesterly winds that scooped up warm dry air from West Texas, meteorologist Jesse Moore said.

"The air is actually sinking as it moves across our area," Moore said. "And, as it sinks, it warms and dries."

Winds were clocked at 15-25 mph and gusted as high as 37 mph, Moore said.

The high of 88 was reached a few minutes before 4 p.m., and the temperature began falling quickly. It was 76 degrees by 7 p.m. and 68 at 10 p.m. By morning, the weather service said, temperatures would be in the low 40s, rising to 60 this afternoon.

North winds are forecast to continue today with gusts as high as 30 mph. The high winds will also bring an elevated fire threat to parts of North Texas, the National Weather Service is advising.

Staff writers Bill Miller and Bill Hanna contributed to this report.

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