Weather & Offshore Conditions


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The climate of Puerto Rico falls into the tropical  climatic [ tropical marine ] zone. Temperatures are moderate year round, averaging near 80 °F (27 °C) in lower elevations and 70 °F (21 °C) in the mountains. Easterly trade winds pass across the island year round. Puerto Rico has a rainy season which stretches from April into November. The mountains of the Cordillera Central are the main cause of the variations in the temperature and rainfall that occur over very short distances.  About a quarter of the annual rainfall for Puerto Rico, on average, occurs during tropical cyclones, which are more frequent during La Niña events.

Temperatures range from 70 to 90 °F (21 to 32 °C) in the lower elevations, while higher elevations in the central part of the island experience temperatures between 61 and 80 °F (16 and 27 °C) year round. The temperature in the south is a few degrees higher than the north. Between winter and summer, there is only a temperature swing of around 6 °F (3.3 °C). This is mainly due to the warm waters of the tropical Atlantic ocean, which significantly modify cooler air moving in from the north and northwest. The highest temperature ever recorded was 103 °F (39 °C) at San Lorenzo, while the lowest temperature ever recorded was 38 °F (3 °C) at Aibonito

The wind is persistent 19-knots  (35 km/h; 22 mph) trade winds move from east to west across the island year round. In lighter wind regimes, sea breeze and land breeze circulations dominate.   Higher winds occur in the vicinity of tropical cyclones, which pass by every five years.

There is a pronounced rainy season from April to November.  Due to the commonwealth‘s topography, rainfall varies greatly across the island.   Rainfall tends to be evenly distributed throughout the year, but doubles during the months from May to October, which, unfortunately, coincides with hurricane season, as falls from November to April, with a driest period from January to April.   There have not been any documented cases of snow falling within Puerto Rico, though occasionally it is brought in from elsewhere as a publicity stunt.

Puerto Rico experiences the Atlantic hurricane season, similar to the remainder of the Caribbean Sea and North Atlantic oceans. On average, a quarter of its annual rainfall is contributed from tropical cyclones, which is more prevalent during periods of La Niña than El Niño.  A cyclone of tropical storm strength passes near Puerto Rico, on average, every 5 years.   A hurricane passes in the vicinity of the island, on average, every 11 years. 

Sometimes, during showers and thunderstorms, waterspouts form off the coasts, frequently on the west coast. In the inner sea, tornadoes and hailstorms are possible. These thunderstorms can be a result from tropical wavestropical cyclones, and frontal boundaries which become stationary across the region between fall and spring.

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