Phoenix breaks daily heat record on shortest day of the year

Dec 21, 2023, 2:40 PM

Phoenix endured its hottest Dec. 21 in history on Thursday. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)...

Phoenix endured its hottest Dec. 21 in history on Thursday. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

(Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — It’s the shortest day of the year, but Phoenix just could not resist setting a daily heat record.

The temperature hit 78 degrees around 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, breaking a daily record that had stood since 1985, according to the National Weather Service.

How hot has it been in Phoenix this year?

It was a summer full of extreme heat in Phoenix, including a record stretch of 31 consecutive 110-degree days from June 30 to July 30. The previous mark was 18 days in 1974.

That streak made July in Phoenix the hottest month ever documented in a U.S. city, according to the Arizona State Climate Office.

Phoenix also broke the record for hottest “meteorological summer” (June-August) with an average temperature of 97 degrees. That beat the previous mark of 96.7 degrees set in 2020.

Phoenix saw the third-most 100-degree days this year in the city’s history.

Isn’t it supposed to rain soon in Phoenix?

There’s a 100% chance of rain in Phoenix on Friday, according to NWS.

Forecasters are expecting parts of the Valley to get upwards of 1-1½ inches of rain before activity winds down Saturday.

A 24-hour flash flood watch is set to begin at 6 a.m. Friday across a swath of southern and central Arizona, including the entire Phoenix area, which could start seeing signs of activity late Thursday. Anyone driving Friday should be patient and expect trips to take longer than usual.

Visit the KTAR News Weather Center for the latest on weather across metro Phoenix.

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79° | 51°
73° and mostly sunny

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Phoenix breaks daily heat record on shortest day of the year