Record dry July

With just 1.1 millimetres of rain for the entire month, July scorched the Vernon record books.

With just 1.1 millimetres of rain for the entire month, July scorched the Vernon record books.

According to Environment Canada records dating back to  1900, the past month broke the last record, set in 2003, of just 1.6 mm.

“Vernon broke their all-time record of 114 July’s,” said Doug Lundquist, Environment Canada meteorologist.

Although temperatures didn’t soar past any records, it was still a hotter than average month.

The average temperature for July is 19.1, but this year’s average was 21.6.

While other pockets of B.C. also broke records for being one of the driest July’s, Vernon was one of the only Okanagan cities to make it into the history books.

“From Kelowna south we didn’t break the record,” said Lundquist.

But that all came to an end this weekend as scattered showers and thunderstorms rolled through the region just in time for the long weekend.

There is a chance thunderstorms will continue today and Monday with precipitation easing off into the week.

“There will be some sun mixed in with it,” notes Lundquist for all those taking in events or recreational opportunities over the weekend.

Those spending the weekend outdoors are cautioned to stay safe during any lightning and/or wind activity.

“It’s best to try and take good shelter when the storm hits.”

With Eastern Pacific waters reading warmer than average, August is expected to be another hot month.

“There’s a very high probability that temperatures will be above average,” said Lundquist, who hasn’t seen a ‘bad’ summer in the Okanagan since moving here in 1993.

With all the hot, dry weather, campfire bans are in effect in communities and throughout the Kamloops Fire Centre.

“The campfire ban will remain in place until such time that we receive wide-spread rain across the region,” said Michaela Swan, fire centre communications officer.

The threat of lightning sparked fires is of particular concern to officials, who ask anyone who spots a wildfire to call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 on a cell phone.