Puget Sound sees record lows, freezing temps Thursday morning
Time to break out the scraper for that windshield frost. Thursday morning commuters dealt with cold temps, frost, and some icy roads in Western Washington.
Low temperatures for the early morning hovered in the low to mid-30s for much of the region, with some areas in the south interior hitting the mid to upper 20s.
In the Seattle area, temperatures got down to 37 degrees. According to the National Weather Service, Seattle hasn’t seen back to back days with lows in the 30s in the first 10 days of October since 1974.
“This will be very early on the calendar to see this sort of chill. Normally, we don’t see our first morning low temperatures in the mid-30s, in the fall season, until about Halloween,” KIRO 7 meteorologist Morgan Palmer told KIRO Radio.
Record lows were seen in Olympia where it hit 26 degrees, breaking the 27-degree record set in 1972. Also breaking cold temperature records was Quillayute, where it got down to 29 degrees, breaking the 31-degree record last set in 2008.
“In fact, I went back through the record books to see the last time we had a morning low temperature this low, this early in a fall season,” he continued. “It was all the way back to 1972. That was the earliest we’ve ever had cold like that. This is rather unusual. Normally, we don’t hit these sorts of temperatures until the last week of October, first week of November.”
35 degrees in Seattle Thursday matches the record low set on October 10, 1946.
- Patchy fog is expected in the region over the morning.
- Freezing fog was initially expected in the southwest interior, but it became too dry for anything beyond isolated fog.
- There could be icy roads across the passes south of Tacoma.
- Highs are expected to be in the 50s.
- Frost on car windshields is possible.
The National Weather Service has issued a freeze warning for Thurston, Lewis, Grays Harbor, and Mason counties between 2-9 a.m. Officials say to expect low visibility and slick roads.
The National Weather Service has also commented on how early the cold has set in Washington. It notes that the last time Seattle had a low below 40 degrees in the first 10 days of October was 29 years ago on October 7, 1990.
Wednesday’s low of 37 degrees in Seattle ties the second place low record for October 9.
- 35 degrees on Oct. 9, 1960
- 37 degrees on Oct. 9, 1985
- 38 degrees on Oct. 8 1948
It was noted earlier this week that a “big cool down” had arrived in Washington. On Tuesday, hail turned the streets of Bellevue icy white, while snow fell at about 3,000 feet. The Washington State Department of Transportation was already advising drivers to use traction tires on the passes.