Preliminary temperatures indicate Charleston on track to break July heat record

Preliminary temperatures show Charleston is likely to break July’s heat record, but nothing will be official until 1 a.m. Monday, according to the National Weather Service.

The high temperature at Charleston International Airport on Sunday was 96 degrees and the low as of 6 p.m. was 81 degrees, bringing the monthly average temperature to 86.3 — .2 degrees higher than the 1986 July heat record of 86.1 degrees.

“If the high and low temperature doesn’t change, we’ll have a new warmest July,” said meteorologist Carl Barnes, in North Charleston.

The heat index Sunday was 104 degrees. There was a chance of thunderstorms in the evening, which, he said, could affect the low temperature after sunset.

Sunday was the sixth day in a row that temperatures were 95 degrees or higher at the airport, which is higher than the average of 91 degrees this time of year, according to Barnes. He said temperatures all month have been at or above 91 degrees, with the exception of three days.

“It’s been a very hot month,” he added.

Monday is expected to bring a high near 93 and a heat index as high as 102. There’s a 40 percent chance of rain.

Reach Melissa Boughton at 843-937-5594 or at Twitter.com/mboughtonPC.