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The holiday season has been unusually warm the past two years. Supplies of Christmas trees were still coming in the day before Thanksgiving here at Big John's Christmas Trees in Buckhead. Big John's owner expected the holiday weekend to be  a big one
Jim Burress / WABE

It was a warm Christmas along most of the East Coast on Sunday, including in metro Atlanta, where it was the second warmest on record.

Last Christmas, metro Atlanta saw a record high temperature of 75 degrees, just a one degree difference from this year's high of 74.

That's the second highest since 1878, when temperature records started to be collected.

Sidney King, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Peachtree City, said for the second year in a row winds from the Gulf of Mexico brought moist air to the Southeast.

John Raoux / Associated Press

Tropical Storm Hermine strengthened into a hurricane Thursday and steamed toward Florida's Gulf Coast, where people put up shutters, nailed plywood across store windows and braced for the first direct hit on the state from a hurricane in over a decade.

The National Hurricane Center said the storm's winds reached about 75 mph in the afternoon, just above the 74 mph hurricane threshold.


Hurricane Joaquin isn't expected to pass over Georgia, but he will still make his presence known here.

"Across the Southeast into portions of Georgia, we will be getting quite a bit of rainfall – especially headed into tomorrow because of moisture associated with Joaquin being pulled into our area," Ryan Willis, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said. 

Willis said there could be up to five inches of rain north and east of Atlanta. Gwinnett County may see up to three inches of rain and Athens may see five inches of rain. 

Debris almost fills the openings of this rainwater drain on Greenbriar Parkway SW in SW Atlanta.
Charles W. Jones / WABE

When heavy rains swept through Atlanta recently, parts of the city flooded including the Downtown Connector and an apartment building in Midtown.

Atlanta Department of Watershed Management Commissioner Jo Ann Macrina confirmed during an interview on “A Closer Look” intense rains and clogged storm drains are mostly to blame.

But Macrina said there were other reasons for the flooding, as well.

“This issue is actually a lot more complicated than what meets the eye.”

A tornado forms over a house near Pilger, Neb., Monday, June 16, 2014.
Mark 'Storm' Farnik / Associated Press

March is usually when tornado season begins, but it’s been really quiet this year.

There wasn’t a single tornado in Georgia or its neighboring states last month, according to Jordan McLeod, who’s with the Southeast Regional Climate Center in Chapel Hill.

“It looks like this March will be the first on record since 1950 that there have not been any reported tornadoes,” said McLeod. That’s when the record-keeping began.