It should not come as a surprise to many that Indiana set a record for rainfall in the month of June, with a state average of 9.03 inches, the Indiana State Climate Office said Wednesday. June also was the fourth-wettest of any month on record since 1895. The rainfall surpassed the previous June record of 8.13 inches set in 1958. The climate office, based at Purdue University, said nearly all parts of Indiana received above-normal rainfall. Normal rainfall ranges from 4.1 inches to 4.3 inches across the state.
The heaviest rain totals generally were in a west-to-east band stretching from Newton to Adams counties across northern Indiana. A rainfall monitoring station in Rensselaer in Jasper County had the most rain – 18.06 inches. Two locations in Newton County had more than 17 inches.
During the entire month there were only four days when it did not rain somewhere in Indiana. On seven days, some areas had more than 4 inches.
The rain has exacted a heavy toll on crops planted in the spring, flooding fields in many areas of the state – especially in the north – and keeping the young corn and soybean plants under water for days on end. Purdue Extension agricultural economist Chris Hurt said this week the value of the crops already could have declined by $475 million because of the damage.
Not all areas of Indiana received heavy rainfall in the same weeks:
* June 1-7 was generally dry across most of the state.
* June 8-16: When high pressure blocked storms from moving normally across southeast states, storm systems passed through a narrow corridor in northern Indiana to reach the Atlantic Coast, funneling large rain amounts to that part of the state.
* June 19-20: The remnants of Tropical Storm Bill carried heavy rain across the southern half of Indiana, which was largely missed earlier in the month.
* June 22-30: A fast jet stream across the northern tier of the United States set the stage for more wet, stormy weather across all of Indiana as fronts stalled here.
Only three other months are on record as wetter in Indiana: January 1950, with 10.11 inches; April 2011, with 9.61 inches; and January 1937, with 9.23 inches.
The climate office said Indiana’s July forecast calls for more of the same: above-normal precipitation and cool temperatures. It said the cooler temperatures should help limit the extreme downpours as the heaviest rainfall tends to occur in the warm, muggy air mass ahead of cold fronts.