Weather

May 14, 2013

Clouds clear and temperature reaches record low at RDU

Forecasters recorded a record low temperature for the date of 39 degrees at Raleigh-Durham International Airport on Tuesday morning, but highs in the low 70s Tuesday and high 80s on Wednesday will likely chase away the memory.

The weather was chilly for people heading to work early Tuesday morning – 40 degrees at 5 a.m. and a record-low 39 degrees at Raleigh-Durham International Airport at 6:24 a.m.

The previous record low for May 14 at RDU was 43 degrees in 1997.

It was unusually cool all around the Triangle, too, with Chapel Hill reporting 38 degrees at 5:56 a.m. and Smithfield reporting 39 degrees at 5:35 a.m.

The lows were due to a high-pressure system that pushed through the area overnight and took away cloud cover, the National Weather Service said.

The effect is like kicking off a blanket while sleeping, since cloud cover reduces how much heat the earth can radiate into the atmosphere at night.

The forecast has Tuesday’s high temperatures reaching the low 70s, overnight lows in the low 50s and highs Wednesday in the upper 80s.

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