Some MI families rethink their Halloween due to climate extremes
Tuesday, October 31, 2023
Tropical Storm Tammy has sprung back to life over the weekend, sending spooky fears of high winds for trick or treaters along the Eastern Seaboard.
Despite Tammy being the only tropical storm on the U.S. radars, meteorologists at the nonprofit Climate Central found climate extremes increasing and warming October overnight temperatures in 216 U.S. cities since 1970.
Lauren Casey, meteorologist for Climate Central, said a wet Oct. 31 is also more common with the warming. Detroit had a record high rainfall of 1.5 inches on Halloween 2013.
"Warmer air holds more moisture," Casey explained. "And when we have more moisture in the atmosphere to be wrung out, we get these heavier rains, We're seeing heavier precipitation events, and they're coming more often."
Hurricane Helga was known as the Great Halloween Hurricane of 2019, as it slammed Florida on Halloween night. Helga sustained 100 mph winds with 120 mph gusts upon landfall. Power remained out until Nov. 3 and many trees suffered major damage.
Other than just cooler offerings instead of hot chili on Halloween, Casey added there are multiple implications to the warmer conditions. She pointed out a warmer fall season sees an increase in mosquitoes and is a disturbance for those with health concerns.
"Allergy season has been lengthened by about a month in many locations across the Midwest," Casey noted. "The extension of the allergy season, of course, can be a nuisance for some people who are sneezing and sniffling, but much more burdensome for people with other more serious respiratory issues like asthma."
Climate Central has a Halloween extreme temperature checker and Detroit had a 5.6-degree fluctuation with temperatures from 21 to 70 degrees on Oct. 31 over the past 30 years.
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