August was already a wet month long before Tropical Storm Irene swept across New York City.
But Irene’s deluge made August one for the record books — it is now the wettest month ever recorded since meteorologists began keeping records in Central Park in 1868.
“We broke the record with a bang,” Stephen Fybish, a weather historian, said Wednesday.
The 18.95 inches recorded for the month topped the August record of 12.36 inches logged in 1990 and the record for the wettest month: 16.85 inches registered in September 1882.
Tim Morrin, the leader of the observation program for the National Weather Service in Upton, Long Island, said, “What’s even more remarkable is that we broke the all-time precipitation record for any month by over two inches.” The Weather Service will report the record rainfall officially on Thursday, Sept. 1.
Even before Irene struck the city, the rainfall in August had surpassed 12 inches.
The 30-year average rainfall for August is 3.28 inches, Mr. Morrin said.