July of 2012 is going down in the record books for not only one of the hottest months on record across the lower 48, but the worst drought since the dust bowl years.
The hot heat dome has produced some good news in terms of severe weather. July of 2012 has seen a record low number of tornadoes. Only 24 preliminary reports of tornadoes were filed in July. Once duplicate tornado reports are weeded out, this number will likely be reduced. The Storm Prediction Center says that an average July has 98 tornadoes in the U.S.
There were also no tropical storms or hurricanes in the Atlantic in July, which isn't that unusual, according to National Hurricane Center. Since records began in 1851, 89 Julys have seen no named storms or hurricanes. This most recently occurred in 2009.
The quiet July followed a fast start to the season, when four storms (Alberto, Beryl, Chris and Debby) formed in May and June.
However, the hurricane center is monitoring a tropical depression in the central Atlantic, which the center is giving a 70 percent chance of becoming a named tropical storm by Friday. If it becomes a named storm, it will be called Ernesto.
Check the latest track of T.D #5 right here: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/graphics_at5.shtml?5-daynl?large#contents