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Weather Updates

Before noon, another record high temp set

Updated: March 21, 2012 4:22PM



Chicago’s rare March heat wave broke yet another record Wednesday, the eighth day in a row in which the record high for the day was either broken or tied.

The official temperature as of 11 a.m. at O’Hare International Airport was 80 degrees, which breaks the previous high temperature for March 21 -- 77 degrees, which was set in 1938, the National Weather Service said.

And the day will only get warmer, with an expected high temperature of 84 degrees, according to the weather service.

The official high for Tuesday was 85 degrees, breaking the previous record for the date, 76 degrees, set in 1921. That reading was also the third warmest March temperature ever to be recorded in Chicago, surpassed only by an 87-degree day on March 31, 1981, and an 88-degree day on March 29, 1986.

Before this year, there had only been 10 days in March with highs in the 80s, which means on average Chicago only sees an 80-degree high in March once every 14 years, the weather service said.

This year alone has seen a record six days reaching highs at or above 80 degrees, and there may be more on the way as forecasts threaten to break records through Thursday, the weather service says.

The last time Chicago saw an 80-degree temperature during March was more than 20 years ago on March 12, 1990, when the high was 81 degrees.



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