Deep freeze in the South continues

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:17 PM GMT on January 11, 2010

Share this Blog
3
+

The Deep South shivered through a ridiculously frigid weekend, with low temperature records crumbling over much of Florida, Texas, and Louisiana. This morning, record lows for the date fell in Miami, West Palm Beach, Tampa, Fort Myers, Lakeland, Tallahassee, and St. Petersburg. The most extreme low temperature record this morning was set in Key West, where the mercury fell to 42°F at 5am--the second coldest temperature ever observed in Key West. This is just 1° warmer than the all-time coldest temperature observed in Key West--41° in January of 1981 and 1873. Widespread reports of sleet and snow flurries accompanied the cold blast across Central Florida on Saturday, the eighth snow event in Florida since 2000, according to Wikipedia. It remains to be seen how much damage the $9.3 billion Florida citrus industry will see because of the cold blast, which is the most severe in Florida since the December 1989 cold wave that devastated the citrus industry. Temperatures below the 28° that causes fruit damage affected some citrus-growing areas again this morning, for the third consecutive morning.


Figure 1. Ice encases citrus in Altoona, Florida. Image taken Sunday, January 10, 2010 by wunderphotographer CAVU.

Intense and long-lasting cold
In Texas, two airports tied all-time January low temperature records on Saturday morning--Hondo, who's 12°F tied the record set January 11, 1982, and Cotulla La Salle, which hit 16°F, tying the record set January 13, 1975. Most of Texas' airports set daily low temperature records on Saturday morning. Saturday's low in Waco of 8°F broke the previous record of 15° for the date, and was the first time Waco has been in the single digits since the -4°F reading on December 23, 1989. Not only has the South's cold been intense, it has been exceptionally long-lasting. Montgomery, Alabama has had a low temperature below 25° nine consecutive days, breaking the old mark of seven straight days set in January 2001. With the cold snap only grudgingly scheduled to release its grip on the South, Montgomery can expect to run their streak of sub-25° lows to at least eleven straight days this week. Mobile, Alabama and Pensacola, Florida now have their second longest streak of days with a minimum temperature below freezing, at nine and eight days, respectively. Pensacola may equal or top their record of eleven straight days (set in January 1940) later this week, but Mobile is unlikely to break their record of fifteen straight days (set in February 1940). Also of note is that Key West has seen five consecutive days with low temperatures below 50 degrees (January 7th - 11th). This is the second longest such streak recorded in Key West, one day short of the record six-day streak on December 1 - 6, 1876. Key West has a decent chance of tying that record on Tuesday morning, when the low should fall to 50 or below.

A nicer beach weekend in Antarctica than Central Florida
Saturday's high and low temperatures in Orlando and Daytona Beach, Florida were 40° and 30°F. Tampa's high and low were 42°F and 29°F. Under sunny skies and light winds less than 10 mph, Saturday's high and low temperature at San Martin Base, Antarctica were 44° and 34°F. Gray, cloudy skies with winds gusting to 16 - 21 mph greeted beach goers at the beaches near Daytona Beach and Tampa, so it was a much nicer day at the beach in the Antarctic Peninsula than in Central Florida on Saturday (the Florida Chamber of Commerce loves stats like that!) Nice beach weather in Antarctica continued through Sunday, with sunny San Martin, Antarctica (high 41°, low 35°) recording an average temperature warmer than most stations in Central Florida. In all fairness, it is summer in Antarctica, and the ocean temperatures in Florida were a bit warmer than in Antarctica.

A major pattern shift coming
As I noted in my previous post, a sharp kink in the jet stream and a strong negative phase of the North Atlantic Oscillation is responsible for this winter's cold blast over eastern North America and Europe. The ridge of high pressure that has been blocking the west-to-east motion of weather systems over the past ten days is weakening, though, and a major shift in the winter weather pattern is in store for the Northern Hemisphere by late this week. A more typical El Niño pattern will set up, with the jet stream diving southward over California, bringing a strong flow of moist, Pacific air to the West Coast. A strong low pressure system will also bring heavy rain to the Gulf Coast on Friday and Saturday. Temperatures will slowly moderate across Europe and the Midwest and Eastern U.S. this week as the pattern gradually shifts, and more ordinary winter weather can be expected in these regions by next weekend.


Figure 2. Departure of the surface temperature from average for the first eight days of 2010 shows much colder than average conditions were present over the Midwest and Southern U.S., much of Europe, and Central Asia. Much warmer than average temperatures were present over the Northwest U.S., Greenland, the Arctic, and Southern Asia. A sharp kink in the jet stream was responsible for the temperature anomaly pattern. Image credit: NOAA/ESRL.

Jeff Masters

Breakfast for one (earthlydragonfly)
Taken in Wintergarden Florida. Enjoy Mark
Breakfast for one
South Florida Freeze (dudleydocker)
This passes for icicles in south Florida.....
South Florida Freeze
Gainesville Deep Freeze (gatorgal)
On the campus at the University of Florida's
Gainesville Deep Freeze

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 258 - 208

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13Blog Index

Rita Evac, from which site (source) did #251 originate? That sounds ugly...
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
I see there was some back and forth earlier that mentioned Sarah Palin. So has anybody posted that SHE IS NOW WITH FOX NEWS!

I am personally very relieved. She's not VP, we still have the freedom to change channels, and she's occasionally entertaining!
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
A rainmaker expected here.

IN RESPONSE...A LARGE AND VIGOROUS SURFACE LOW IS FORECAST TO
DEVELOP OFF THE TX COAST ON FRIDAY AND MOVE ENE TOWARDS NORTH
FLORIDA. THIS WILL CAUSE SURFACE HIGH TO LIFT ENE STARTING
WEDNESDAY NIGHT WHILE H5 RIDGE ALSO BEGINS TO BUILD INTO THE AREA
ALLOWING TEMPERATURES TO COMMENCE THEIR LONG AWAITED CLIMB. THE
MOVEMENT OF LOW WILL ALSO BRING AN INCREASINGLY GOOD RETURN OF
MOIST AND HUMID AIR FROM THE SOUTH PLUS ALLOWING FOR HIGHER CHANCE
VALUES OF RAIN. AS LOW APPROACHED WINDS/GUSTS WILL ALSO NOTICEABLY
INCREASE. BOTH THE GFS AND ECMWF FORECAST LOW NEAR TALLAHASSEE
SATURDAY DRAGGING A COLD FRONT INTO THE AREA DURING SAT EVE AND
THEN DEPARTING INTO THE ATLANTIC EARLY SUNDAY. WILL GO WITH WDLY
SCT POPS ON FRI...A GOOD CHANCE OF RAIN FRI NIGHT THRU SAT AND A
CHANCE OF RAIN SAT NIGHT. IF THIS FORECAST HOLDS...MOST OR ALL THE
WARM SECTOR (AND ACCOMPANYING SEVERE WEATHER THREAT) WOULD LIKELY
REMAIN SOUTH OF LOCAL AREA (OR AT LEAST LAND AREA). THIS IS FAIRLY
TYPICAL OF EL NINO SYSTEMS. HOWEVER...THIS SYSTEM HAS THE
POTENTIAL TO BE A WIDESPREAD RAIN PRODUCER AS DEEPER MOISTURE IS
PULLED INLAND FROM THE GULF OF MEX. THE OPERATIONAL GFS AND ECMWF
ARE FORECASTING 2 TO 4 INCHES OF RAIN ACROSS OUR FORECAST AREA
FROM EARLY SAT TO EARLY SUN.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
251. Woah.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
SE TX:

Late Week:

Major storm system to affect the area with El Nino written all over this one!

Massive upper level trough within a developing split flow upper air pattern digs deep into Mexico with tremendous warm air advection and lift starting Thursday over much of TX. Surface cold air will be difficult to dislodge and expect the warm sector to remain offshore. Strong forcing ahead of the upper feature will promote intense cyclogenesis in the western/northwestern Gulf of Mexico late Friday. 12Z Sunday GFS showed an impressive 997mb low cranks up the TX coast into SC LA Saturday. A low of this magnitude will bring not only gale but possibly storm warning conditions to the coastal waters which is sustained winds of 55mph or greater. Coastal low should move up the coast Friday with several impacts from heavy to excessive rainfall to high tides and strong easterly winds. Upper level low will hang back over MX and eject across on Saturday as surface low moves into LA continuing the threat of rain and colder air into the early part of the weekend. Experience with such intense and deep systems usually supports a slower than guidance ejection of the storm system….so rainfall may need to be held back into Sunday. This slower progression of this system may allow more colder air to penetrate southward and become entrained with some threat of winter precip. over our NW and N counties late Saturday…although at this time it is a remote possibility. You usually do not see such intense storm systems of standard deviations of 2-4 below normal without some major impacts. Will define these impacts Tuesday and Wednesday as the track and intensity of this system become better defined.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
i am even beginning to think like a yankee. i saw it was forecast to be a low of 29 tomorrow and i thought omg, its gonna be warm! 2 weeks ago 29 was incredibly cold. now 15 is incredibly cold but i am getting used to it. 2 things happened to me in nw fla that has never happened in my life--- 1. i splashed water on my hoodie and it froze like a board before i walked across the yard, and; 2. i stepped on a water hose and it snapped like a dry branch
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
It's in the 50s and I had to turn the vent on in the car to get cool fresh air, was getting hot with jacket on and sun beating on me. Any other time we'd be cold, not after being in the 20s/30s
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Dakster:
ElConando - Sarah Palin just might be the only person that could make Quayle look good...

Hey, how's that cold weather up your way?


Its gonna be another freezing night lows at 24. I believe Wed night is the last night we have below freezing for quite a while.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Bordonaro:
243 Atmo, is that satellite used by the GFS/NAM/ECMWF for model forecasts??

I know it is used in the air quality forecast model parts of those, but not sure how much of the important things, like water vapor, from AIRS is used in GFS.

According to this "assimilation of AIRS satellite data" has been in GFS since 2005: http://www.emc.ncep.noaa.gov/mmb/aq/AQChangelog.html
And "Improved assimilation of AIRS radiances" for NAM in 2008 (same link)

Maybe nrt can find more among his sources (he is very good at digging in the NCEP documents).
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
ElConando - Sarah Palin just might be the only person that could make Quayle look good...

Hey, how's that cold weather up your way?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
243 Atmo, is that satellite used by the GFS/NAM/ECMWF for model forecasts??
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Hmmm, major satellite issues lately...another one down. This one takes a lot of pollution, chemistry, big time important modeling variables, and surface measurements. Is a combined microwave and IR sensor.

Email:
Update: *ESPC was informed that there will be no AIRS data available for at least the next week while engineers restart and check the instrument.*

Topic: *AQUA/* *AIRS
Date/Time Issued*: January 9, 2010 2005 UTC*
Product(s) or Data Impacted: *AQUA/**AIRS*

Date/Time of Initial Impact: *January 9, 2010 1026 UTC*
Date/Time of Expected End: *Until Further Notice*

Length of Event: *TBD (To Be Determined)*

Impacts on Users and Significance: *Major Impact... No AQUA/AIRS data.*
User Actions: *None.*

Details/Specifics of Change: *There was an AIRS anomaly earlier today; a red limit was detected during the contact at 009/10:13:06-10:26:13. The Flight Operations Team executed the Red Limit response. The instrument is not producing science data at this time. The instrument is in a safe configuration. Goddard Mission Operations is conducting anomaly resolution telecons with the AIRS Team at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.** *


List of data products usually available from the AIRS instrument:
Carbon Dioxide
Carbon Monoxide
Clouds
Dust
Methane
Water Vapor
Outgoing Longwave Radiation
Ozone
Sulfur Dioxide
Surface Properties
Temperature
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting ElConando:


If thats the case, then it might be even colder than this batch, cuz late jan to early feb is the peak of winter. But the chances of this are still quite low its 2 weeks from now.


I sincerely hope not!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting Floodman:


But El, you're not a Sarah Palin fan? LOL


Not many are, at least Dan Quayle was experienced and somewhat knowledgeable away from camera.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Floodman:
Okay kids, I'm out for a while...got to get out of this office and go play in the traffic...

Play nice, y'all!


have a good one!
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
Quoting Bordonaro:
Rita Evac, yes, that model run for 1-27-10 shows a trough axis from near Hudson's Bay to Montana, at the Jet Stream Level.

Please say, no, it isn't so! Cause that scenario dumps the Arctic into the Eastern 2/3rds of the US, AGAIN.


If thats the case, then it might be even colder than this batch, cuz late jan to early feb is the peak of winter. But the chances of this are still quite low its 2 weeks from now.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Okay kids, I'm out for a while...got to get out of this office and go play in the traffic...

Play nice, y'all!
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
Quoting Floodman:


But El, you're not a Sarah Palin fan? LOL


you betcha! ;)
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
Quoting ElConando:


You mean like Sa- no should not even go there. I have limits too.


Ok, it has been changed!! It was not meant to be a political put-down :0)!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting ElConando:


One of the few bright spots in the GOP right now. At least news making wise.


But El, you're not a Sarah Palin fan? LOL
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
Quoting Bordonaro:


That is worse than a flying pig, with lipstick:



You mean like Sa- no should not even go there. I have limits too.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Bordonaro:


Pretty close to the big goose egg -0-!

Bull. NOAA will find a way for the SST anomaly to make up for all land-based cold and put this January in the top ten. (sounds funny, but I am completely serious)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Patrap:
Not my vote EL,..LOL

Consider it a Gift to the GOP asylum.



One of the few bright spots in the GOP right now. At least news making wise.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Thanks for the b-day wishes Ike, Dak, Flood, and whomever I might have missed on a quick scan-back.

(Hey, did y'all think have a "busy b-day" while typing "happy b-day"? ... though busy is better than bored by a long shot)

EDIT: Add biff...while I was reading
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Floodman:


Just in time for it to snow on my birthday...yeah, I said it! 4-6" on DFW on or about February 3rd...if it happens, remember I ordered it (don't go cursing at anyone but me...LOL)


Another Arctic outbreak is worse than a BAD April Fools Joke.

Poor pig, looks like he is violating the Clean Air Act, catalytic converter, please!!

Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting Bordonaro:
Rita Evac, yes, that model run for 1-27-10 shows a trough axis from near Hudson's Bay to Montana, at the Jet Stream Level.

Please say, no, it isn't so! Cause that scenario dumps the Arctic into the Eastern 2/3rds of the US, AGAIN.


Just in time for it to snow on my birthday...yeah, I said it! 4-6" on DFW on or about February 3rd...if it happens, remember I ordered it (don't go cursing at anyone but me...LOL)
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
Quoting jrweatherman:
So what are the odds that January is going to be in the top 10 warmest on record?


Pretty close to the big goose egg -0-!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
So what are the odds that January is going to be in the top 10 warmest on record?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
191. followup
I believe "Mythbusters" tested whether liquid at 98.6 degrees would freeze *instantly* upon encountering air at -40F, and the answer was a resounding no. (or an echoing no, if you want to be more accurate.)
For the life of me I can't find the video on the website, but I know they did the test.

http://mythbustersresults.com/special1
Member Since: December 8, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 29
Rita Evac, yes, that model run for 1-27-10 shows a trough axis from near Hudson's Bay to Montana, at the Jet Stream Level.

Please say, no, it isn't so! Cause that scenario dumps the Arctic into the Eastern 2/3rds of the US, AGAIN.
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Cool Flood... I'll have to remember that in case global warming becomes a reality and we get brutually cold winters down here in South Florida. (A hint of sarcasm was intended)This is kind of a bad time for a GW debate in Florida at the moment... and yes, I understand that GW can also mean climate change, but to most GW means that we are getting WARMER all over with no wierd cold weather events.

Happy Birthday to all of the January born folks on Wunderground...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
For the last 4 days seemed like an eternity. Finally, it's back to normal in Dallas-Ft Worth, TX..YEE-HAW..

A send off song for the Arctic airmass. a song I remember from my younger years:

Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Thats a big high off the west coast, 1032mb that would send everything down the plains and Gulf Coast with another frigid Arctic outbreak
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Crap shoot this far out but gives an idea of what could happen at end of month for January on the 27th. Arctic icebox comes back into buisiness over Canada and as if jet stream wants to buckle down the plains...


Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Floodman:


Nada, dude! So, was it good, or just another day?


it was definitely good! I had some of Tampa's white chili, my mom made whoopie pies, and the Cowboy's stomped the Eagles (:
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
Quoting tornadodude:


thanks!


Nada, dude! So, was it good, or just another day?
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
Quoting Floodman:
By the way, Happy belated Birthday to TornadoDude, and Happy Birthday, Atmoaggie!


thanks!
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
Quoting Dakster:
Flood - Thanks for the advice, I actually used a 150' garden hose to wash off the frost as 15 minutes of idling with the heater on and the windshiled wipers still wouldn't allow me to see through the windshield.

BTW, the water didn't freeze and it was 32 outside to answer the previous question(s)...

Been around - but not really posting and apparently I kept missing your posts...

FWIW, last weekend had a wonderful, albeit short visit with Presslord - had to meet the man behind the Portlight mission! It was worth the deviation from my drive to Connecticut, which was for unfortunate reasons.


Sorry to hear that th trip was for unfortunate circumstances, but I'm glad to hear you got to meet press...

As for the winter weather advice, I'm loaded with it...to clear ice off the stoop, my German grandmother would take a large stock pot, dump in a canister of Morton's Iodized, bring it to a boil, then dump it down the stoop. Instant de-icer. A handful or two of rock salt after it cooled and no ice...
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
HBD Atmo!
I agree that efficiency experts have gotten out of hand growing the orange juice already frozen.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
214. IKE
Stones...Under My Thumb...for your listening pleasure...in stereo...


51 degrees outside.
81.1 in this upstairs bedroom.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Anytime Oz,Buddy

Be well and warm
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129903
Flood - Thanks for the advice, I actually used a 150' garden hose to wash off the frost as 15 minutes of idling with the heater on and the windshiled wipers still wouldn't allow me to see through the windshield.

BTW, the water didn't freeze and it was 32 outside to answer the previous question(s)...

Been around - but not really posting and apparently I kept missing your posts...

FWIW, last weekend had a wonderful, albeit short visit with Presslord - had to meet the man behind the Portlight mission! It was worth the deviation from my drive to Connecticut, which was for unfortunate reasons.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Well Oz..then you must be a foreigner friend.

Cuz the DD-214 is the Discharge Form..

DD-214





I gotta go get some flux to solder a Copper pipe leak on a Home down the street,..they didnt run their water nor wrap their pipes for the freeze,

EZ Money today..

Later Gators..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129903
Quoting Dakster:
FLOODMAN!!! I see you are back! Glad to see you posting again. Hope you are feeling better.


I was going to post some pictures of frost on my cars from this morning, but the other pictures just BLOW mine away... Granted I am in Deep South Miami-Dade County. Having to chip ice off of the windshield this morning reminded me of why I don't live further north.


Dak! What up?

By the way, what you had on your windshield was frost (unless you got freezing rain)...just so you know, if you ever DO get freezing rain, cover your windsheild with visqueen; when you get up in the morning, you just lift off the visqueen and no scraping required...too much work for frost though; just start the car, set the defroster and finish your coffee. That should take care of it

So where have you been? I haven't seen you in a while...
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
Quoting CycloneOz:


I agree. I think that is the right answer.

Would have to be much much colder for it to freeze.


definitely, or a much much longer pipe ha
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360

Viewing: 258 - 208

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13Blog Index

Top of Page

About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

Local Weather

Overcast
33 °F
Overcast

JeffMasters's Recent Photos

Lake Effort Snow Shower Over Windsor, Ontario
Sunset on Dunham Lake
Pictured Rocks Sunset
Sunset on Lake Huron