PORTLAND — The high temperature in Portland set a record on Thursday, the start of what the National Weather Service says could be a warming trend.

Meteorologist Bob Marine said the high of 60 degrees broke the previous record for March 8 — 56 degrees — set just two years ago.

Portland wasn’t the only community that got higher-than-normal temperatures on Thursday. Portsmouth, N.H., hit 69 degrees, and Sanford reached 66.

In Portland, the record high temperature for March is 88 degrees, set March 31, 1998.

The current warm spell is expected to continue with temperatures forecast to hit the 60s again early next week. “It’s not unusual to see these types of temperatures once we get into the middle of March,” Marine said.

Though it’s still technically winter, spring is just around the corner. The vernal equinox will arrive at 1:14 a.m. March 20. Another sign that spring is nearly upon us is daylight-saving time. The clocks will spring ahead one hour Sunday morning.

“You lose that hour, but that extra hour of sun is really nice,” Marine said.