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91 degrees? For Western New York, that’s hot

We won’t see any record-setting temperatures, and folks in the American West might be giggling at what we find oppressive, but Western New York is going through a hot, humid and relatively uncomfortable stretch for the next couple of days.

“It’s going to remain very hot and dry through at least Wednesday, with maybe a sporadic shower here or there,” National Weather Service meteorologist Jim Mitchell said Monday morning. “Most everyone’s going to be pretty warm.”

The Weather Service is calling for highs in the high 80s and up to 90 in some areas through at least Wednesday, thanks to a very large high-pressure system hovering over much of the Northeast. The wind direction will keep things from getting worse, with the winds remaining westerly, rather than from the south, which would have brought warmer air here.

Sunday was the first day this year where temperatures at the Weather Service office in Cheektowaga climbed into the 90s, with a high of 91 set at 4:22 p.m. that day, just short of the record 92 degrees for July 14.

Monday’s official high was 89.

The National Weather Service calls for expected daily highs of 86 degrees today and 87 degrees Wednesday, before high temperatures dip into the low 80s the rest of the week. More inland areas, of course, may see slightly higher temperatures. None of those readings will break any records, as the daily historic highs for those dates, starting Monday, are 97, 93 and 94 degrees.

This relative heat wave, of course, is not that unusual. The Buffalo area averages about three days per year in the 90s, Mitchell said. And, in a fact that might shock many outsiders, Buffalo never has had an official temperature over 99 degrees, thanks largely to its huge air conditioner, Lake Erie.

The current humidity, besides making things sticky, also manages to keep temperatures from fluctuating significantly from day to night, because it’s more difficult to change the temperature of moist air.

“We won’t heat up so much in the day, and we won’t cool off as much at night,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell was asked how Arizona residents or other Westerners might react to our complaining about our 90-degree temperatures.

“They’d probably laugh at us,” he replied. “They look at 90, and sometimes that’s their low in the morning.”