DECEMBER ROUNDS OFF A MILD 2018: THE WEATHER ROUND-UP FOR THE YEAR
- December brighter than expected, with 40 hours of sunshine more than climate norm
- Sunshine recorded during 65% of all daytime hours
- Rainfall for 2018 amounted to 599mm
Both locals and foreigners who chose to spend the winter holidays here in Malta were treated to a month of sunny skies and relatively warm temperatures last December. Meteorological records show that the sun shone over Malta for 211.7 hours during the last month of 2018, which is over 40 hours more than the norm.
December also saw air temperatures drop from a maximum of 19.4°C, on the 4th and 5th of the month, to a minimum of 5.7°C on the 28th; this being the lowest temperature recorded in 2018. Despite the sharp drop in temperatures, the weather conditions throughout the month remained mild, with an average wind speed of 10.1 knots and only 30.2mm of rainfall, 79% of which was measured on December 1st.
While the year certainly ended on an exceptionally bright note, 2018 had fewer hours of sunshine than 2017, but still enjoyed an average of 236.2 hours of sunny skies per month between January and December, amounting to around 65% of all daytime hours during the year. July was both the brightest and the driest month of the year, with a total of 362.6 hours of sunshine and only 0.4mm of dew recorded, whereas the dullest month was February, recording just over 136 hours of sunshine and an average cloud cover of 4.8 oktas.
The grass was definitely greener in Malta throughout 2018. The islands received 599mm of rainfall in total, making 2018 significantly wetter than the previous two years, when 432mm and 324mm of rainfall were measured respectively. Following a relatively dry start to the year, 181.4mm of rain came pouring down in February, 117mm of which were measured on the 9th of the month, making it the second wettest day in February since 1923.
October not only saw 189mm of rainfall, but also recorded 16 thundery days, making it both the wettest month of the year and the stormiest month ever to be recorded.
With an average of 77% humidity, October was also the most humid month last year. The least humid day of the year followed the hottest one for 2018, the 13th of July, when temperatures reached a sizzling 35.7°C.