Portland sets 2006 record for warmest year ever

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PORTLAND (AP) – 2006 was the warmest year on record in Portland, Bangor and Caribou, according to the National Weather Service.

Portland’s average temperature for the year was 48.5 degrees, surpassing the previous average high of 48.3 degrees set in 1998, the weather service said Friday. The coldest year on record, 1962, had an average temperature of 43.3 degrees.

The average temperature in Caribou last year was 42.6 degrees, edging the previous record of 42.4 degrees set in 1999, the weather service reported earlier this week. Bangor had an average temperature of 46.9 degrees, which broke 1983’s record of 46.3 degrees.

In Portland, 11 months were warmer than normal, with November ranking as the warmest on record and December and January ranking as the second-warmest. Only August was cooler than usual.

The year was also a wet one with 60.9 inches of precipitation falling in Portland – making it the fourth-wettest on record. May, which had 12.3 inches of rain, was the wettest May on record, while October was the fifth-wettest. While Portland had plenty of precipitation for the year, it had a lack of snow. For the year, the city got only 29.4 inches of snow, which was 37 inches below normal.

There was also a dearth of snow in northern Maine, with Caribou getting only 42.2 inches during the year. Meteorologists said the previous low snowfall amount for a calendar year occurred in 1987, when Caribou got 75.8 inches.

Bangor got 28.9 inches for the year, breaking the previous calendar year low of 29.1 inches, set in 1979.

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