DESTIN, Fla. (WKRG) — The National Weather Service in Mobile confirmed 2022 has been a record-breaking year for Okaloosa County weather, record heat the WKRG First Alert Storm Team has been tracking all week.
The hottest day in recorded history was June 18, 2022, at 102 degrees. NWS Mobile said the history of Destin and Fort Walton Beach weather does not go as far as Mobile and Pensacola, dating back to 1996.
Meteorologist in charge Jason Beaman with NWS Mobile said there are two other days that hit 100 degrees. Sept. 5, 2019, and August 23, 2014.
“Those are the only three times since since the mid 90s that that Destin has recorded 100 degree or higher temperature.”Meteorologist Jason Beaman, NWS Mobile
First week of summer forecast
Beaman said the first week of summer is a hot one all along the Gulf Coast.
Forecasters expect Destin to reach 97 degrees Wednesday and 99 degrees on Thursday.
“We could get close to 100 tomorrow,” said Beaman. “Obviously, with the highest forecast of 99, it could certainly be 100 degrees.”
The temperatures will remain in the mid 90’s for the weekend in Destin. Inland portions of Okaloosa County will stay warmer *in the upper 90’s.
“Simply because being closer to the coast, the little bit of a sea breeze will keep them relatively cooler, will still be hot in the 90s, but it looks like we’re going to hit 100 degrees,” said Beaman.
Heat Index vs Temperature
While the thermometer reads 99 degrees for Thursday’s forecast, the heat index will be nearly 110 degrees. Days will feel between 105 and 110 degrees heading into the weekend.
Beaman said the higher humidity is causing an unusual hot streak for the coastal communities.
“For the Destin area and tomorrow likely going to be easily around 110-degree heat indices. So yeah, even though the actual air temperatures are a few degrees cooler, that humidity more than makes up for it and produces some very dangerous heat indices.”
NWS Mobile is predicting 4 straight days of 100-degree temperatures and hotter for inland areas of Okaloosa County.
Beaman said a streak like that is rare for the area.
La Nina and the heat
2022 is a La Nina year. Beaman said the pressure shifts in early summer can cause the temperatures to rise.
“What it does here, especially the late spring or mid-late spring and early summer, we kind of get drier than normal conditions across our area to where you know the jet stream doesn’t give us those daily showers and thunderstorm chances that allows the high pressure to kind of build more semi-permanently over the area and persist,” said Beaman.
Beaman said El Nino years can produce similar heat numbers.
NWS Beat the Heat tips
Beaman said with head advisories in place for the coast, heat stress can become a problem fast.
- Take frequent breaks
- Stay hydrated
- Check on elderly neighbors