Warmth, drought highlight Chattanooga's 2016 weather

Staff photo by Doug Strickland / A cow stands in a dry field at James Burton's farm in LaFayette, Ga. As the region's drough worsened, Burton said he had used all of his stores of hay to feed his cattle and had to buy hay to keep his herd fed.

WARM YEAR

2016 was Chattanooga’s warmest year on record, according to the National Weather Service. Here’s a breakdown of where each season ranked in the city’s history:› Winter (December 2015-February 2016): 14th warmest› Spring (March-May): Sixth warmest› Summer (June-August): 2nd warmest› Fall (September-November): warmest ever

Give yourself a pat on the back for making it through the warmest year in Chattanooga history, or at least the warmest year since the National Weather Service began tracking such things in 1879.

Chattanooga's 2016 average temperature of 64.1 degrees came in 0.6 degrees higher than the previous record, set in 2012, and 3.4 degrees above the city's normal yearly average of 60.8 degrees.

A historic drought fueled the Scenic City's hot year, but the new record also coincided with a third consecutive heat record for the planet, according to research from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

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