No shortage of sunshine last year, Met Office says

Meteorological Office review shows that July was the sunniest month of 2019 and November the wettest month

There were 2,992 hours of sunshine in 2019
There were 2,992 hours of sunshine in 2019

July was the sunniest month of 2019, with 368 hours of sunshine, the Meteorological Office said in its review for 2019.

Sunshine was not in short supply last year with the sun making an appearance for a full 2,992.1 hours.

Despite being the dullest month of 2019 December outshone the climatic norm by almost 14 hours, treating visitors and the islands to more sunshine than expected at this time of the year.

However, 2019 ended on a chilly note. The office said that the air temperature dropped to a low of 7.6 degrees Celsius on the last two days of the year, and hail pelted parts of the island. Despite this, December was still generally warmer, sunnier and considerably drier than the climate norm.

READ ALSO: Polar air mass brought cold to Malta and it’s still in the Mediterranean

The year, started with a wetter-than-average January, which produced 99.8 mm of precipitation.

November, alone contributed to 19% of the year’s total rainfall, making it the wettest month in 2019.  

In contrast, June was the driest month of the year, with a total absence of rain, also being one of the six months in 2019 to produce rainfall levels that fell short of respective monthly quotas.

A severe storm on 23 February not only caused a lot of damage but was also the coldest day of the year
A severe storm on 23 February not only caused a lot of damage but was also the coldest day of the year

Registering the highest maximum air temperature of 37.8˚C amid the first heatwave of summer. Last June became the hottest one on record since 1923. Exactly a month later, as a second heatwave rippled across the island, the mercury rose even further to hit 39.6˚C and made 9 July the hottest day of the year. 

The monthly sea surface temperatures were also higher than average throughout the year, besides in May.     

23 February was the year’s coldest day, seeing the air temperature dip to 3.7˚C and a severe Gregale storm batter the Maltese islands with winds blowing at a maximum speed of 54 knots. A total of 47 thunderstorms were reported at the Met Office throughout the year, with October taking the title of the stormiest month of 2019 after having clocked up an above-average total of 11 thundery days.

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