Europe cold wave deaths hit 200; low-snow winter for the U.S.

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:06 PM GMT on February 03, 2012

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Brutal winter cold continues over most of Europe, where at least 200 people have died in a cold wave that began January 26. Hardest hit has been Ukraine, where the temperature bottomed out at -17°F (-27°C) at the capital of Kyiv this morning. It was the second coldest day of the cold wave, behind the -28°C reading of February 2. These temperatures are the coldest winter weather in six years in Ukraine, and at least 101 deaths are being blamed on the cold there. Also hard-hit has been Poland, where 37 people, most of them homeless, have died from the cold. Rome, Italy experienced a rare snowfall today, only its second day with snow during the past fifteen years. Very cold temperatures 10 - 20°C below average will continue for another seven days in Europe before gradually moderating late next week.


Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average as analyzed by the GFS model, for February 2, 2012. Remarkably cold air was present over Europe and western Alaska, while very warm air was over central North America and Siberia. This image is being generated experimentally by wunderground, and will be regularly available on our web site in the future.

Meanwhile, a snow drought for the U.S.
In the U.S., it's been the opposite story, with temperatures 10 - 15°F above average continuing this week over much of the nation. January 2012 is in the weather record books as the 3rd least-snowy January for the contiguous U.S. since snow records began in 1966, and December 2011 ranked as the 11th least snowy December on record. With no major snow storms in the offing over at least the next ten days, it's looking probable that the non-winter of 2011 - 2012 will set numerous record-low seasonal snowfall totals. The National Weather Service sends out a daily "Weather and Almanac" product for several hundred major U.S. cities that we make available on wunderground. I went through yesterday's statistics for those cities that reported measurable snow this winter. Only nine cities out of 166 major U.S. cities in the lower 48 states reported above-average snowfall as of February 1; 157 cities received below-average snowfall. The big winner in the snow sweepstakes has been Alaska, which is boasting 8 of the top 10 locations for heaviest snowfall this winter. While the 27.75 feet of snow that has fallen on Valdez has gotten a lot of attention, more remarkable is the 18.8 feet of snow Yakutat has received. That's more than 12.5 feet above what they usually have by this time of year.



The big losers in the snow stats for this winter are the cities along the lake effect snow belts on the Great Lakes. Most notably, Syracuse, New York is nearly four feet of snow below average for this time of year. Perhaps more exceptional is Williston, North Dakota, which has received just 1.8" of snow this winter--more than two feet below their average for February 1.



Have a super weekend, everyone, and I'll be back Monday with a new post.

Jeff Masters

Freezed Guy (cathykiro)
Freezed Guy
Windows in the winter (cetus)
Snowy Golosiiv wood...
Windows in the winter
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Maximum temperature today -21c in the afternoon.
The snow and sun
Bulbs - Northern IL Jan. 31, 2012 (juslivn)
Noooo Babies! Hide, hide! It's a trick! It's too early.
Bulbs - Northern IL Jan. 31, 2012
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842. scooster67
7:16 PM GMT on July 22, 2012
Quoting sunlinepr:


90L is looking a "Little Loopy" and looks to bring some more rain to Florida.
Member Since: September 26, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 638
841. sunlinepr
12:48 AM GMT on February 06, 2012
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9874
840. sunlinepr
12:46 AM GMT on February 06, 2012
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9874
839. sunlinepr
12:42 AM GMT on February 06, 2012
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9874
838. sunlinepr
12:41 AM GMT on February 06, 2012
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9874
837. BahaHurican
11:00 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
THE
DEVELOPING SURFACE LOW IN THE GULF OF MEXICO WILL MOVE ACROSS S
FLORIDA TONIGHT BEING ALONG THE E COAST OF FLORIDA MON AND
DISSIPATE ON TUE.

Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22583
836. JupiterKen
10:03 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
I'm not saying it will develop, but I'm saying it has a much better chance than you are making it out to be, HurricaneDean07.


And you base this upon your many years of tropical weather observation?
Member Since: May 3, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 306
835. Xyrus2000
9:18 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

You are talking about post-season 2012, and I was talking about regular season 2012.


Not even gonna reach hurricane strength. This season's a bust.
Member Since: October 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1563
834. NCHurricane2009
8:21 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting JrWeathermanFL:
Tomorrow we will have
A. Alberto
B. TD1
C. 90L
D. 90L Gone
E. Something else


C....Invest 90L
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 528 Comments: 3706
833. JrWeathermanFL
8:20 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

60% C., 40% B.

Thanks
Member Since: July 19, 2011 Posts: 12 Comments: 2519
832. JBirdFireMedic
8:19 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
NEW BLOG!
Member Since: August 10, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 247
831. TropicalAnalystwx13
8:19 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting JrWeathermanFL:
Tomorrow we will have
A. Alberto
B. TD1
C. 90L
D. 90L Gone
E. Something else

60% C., 40% B.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32528
830. JrWeathermanFL
8:17 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Tomorrow we will have
A. Alberto
B. TD1
C. 90L
D. 90L Gone
E. Something else
Member Since: July 19, 2011 Posts: 12 Comments: 2519
829. NCHurricane2009
8:15 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting MississippiWx:
Interesting buoy observation south of the center:

Station 42056
NDBC
Location: 19.802N 84.857W
Date: Sun, 05 Feb 2012 18:50:00 UTC
Winds: SW (230°) at 17.5 kt gusting to 21.4 kt
Significant Wave Height: 4.6 ft
Dominant Wave Period: 8 sec
Mean Wave Direction: E (99°)
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.92 in and falling
Air Temperature: 75.7 F
Water Temperature: 79.9 F


That buoy coordinate is well southeast of the 1013 mb center referenced in post 822...so the SW wind direction makes sense. The wind gusts, wave height, and pressure falls send chills up and down my spine!
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 528 Comments: 3706
828. HurricaneVSafety
8:12 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting islander101010:
key west radar shows a significant shower area


Member Since: August 27, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 43
827. stormwatcherCI
8:12 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:
Still,despite being at NRL and having first tropical model plots at 12z after four hours ,there is still nothing at the atcf site about 90L.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8426
826. Thrawst
8:11 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Overcast in Nassau.
Had rain earlier. wish it kept raining -.-
Member Since: July 18, 2010 Posts: 50 Comments: 1908
825. HurricaneVSafety
8:10 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
90L

Member Since: August 27, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 43
824. MississippiWx
8:09 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Interesting buoy observation south of the center:

Station 42056
NDBC
Location: 19.802N 84.857W
Date: Sun, 05 Feb 2012 18:50:00 UTC
Winds: SW (230°) at 17.5 kt gusting to 21.4 kt
Significant Wave Height: 4.6 ft
Dominant Wave Period: 8 sec
Mean Wave Direction: E (99°)
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.92 in and falling
Air Temperature: 75.7 F
Water Temperature: 79.9 F
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
823. Tropicsweatherpr
8:09 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Still,despite being at NRL and having first tropical model plots at 12z after four hours ,there is still nothing at the atcf site about 90L.
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14571
822. NCHurricane2009
8:09 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Official analysis for the first time has a surface low pressure center marked on the surface trough...per the latest North America HPC analysis:
http://www.hpc.ncep.noaa.gov/sfc/90fwbg.gif

The 1013 mb low pressure center is much further NW than where satellite imagery suggests it should be. Perhaps the low pressure center is located beneath the divergence maximum of the associated upper trough...and this divergence maximum is not coincident with the deepest convection....
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 528 Comments: 3706
821. SPLbeater
8:03 PM GMT on February 05, 2012

Jasmine...
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
820. CybrTeddy
8:02 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quick and dirty blog update on 90L. First of the year. Enjoy.
Incredible and rare Invest 90L in the Yucatan Straight - 2/5/12
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24484
819. SPLbeater
8:01 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting NCHurricane2009:


You know...I bet the main media (like the weather channel...the "hurricane authority") is asleep at the switch with this one. We don't need them anyway....

KmanIslander...you can be like Jim Cantore reporting live....I'll get the ominous storm alert music from the weather channel....LOL....


ya we certainly dont need a bunch of media hype, with a system that doesnt have a sure future. this thing could develop, or it could organize some more, and fall apart.

I bet if it did develop into ALberto, they would have people down in Key West, Cancun n such lol
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
818. NCHurricane2009
7:58 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting GTcooliebai:
I think the models are still on vacation in the Caribbean slurping on their pineapple martinis.


You know...I bet the main media (like the weather channel...the "hurricane authority") is asleep at the switch with this one. We don't need them anyway....

KmanIslander...you can be like Jim Cantore reporting live....I'll get the ominous storm alert music from the weather channel....LOL....
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 528 Comments: 3706
817. nrtiwlnvragn
7:58 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Miami NWS

Excerpt:

WATER VAPOR AND VISIBLE SATELLITE SHOWED A LOW LEVEL TROUGH WITH
DEVELOPING SURFACE LOW IN THE YUCATAN CHANNEL THIS AFTERNOON.
THIS SUBTROPICAL VORT WILL BE MOVING NORTHEASTWARD TOWARDS THE
REGION TONIGHT INTO MONDAY. A VERY COMPLEX SITUATION WILL TAKE
PLACE OVER THE NEXT 24-36 HOURS AS THIS FEATURE MERGES WITH A COLD
FRONT THAT WILL BE MOVING TOWARDS THE REGION. TRAINING SHOWERS AND
ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS WERE NOTED NEAR KEY WEST...AND THIS ENTIRE
AREA WILL BE SHIFTING TO THE NORTHEAST OVERNIGHT. LOCALLY HEAVY
RAINFALL WILL BE POSSIBLE TONIGHT AND MONDAY ACROSS DEEP SOUTH
FLORIDA AND THE EAST COAST METRO AREAS.

Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11274
816. stormwatcherCI
7:54 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
NHC MARINE WEATHER DISCUSSION


AS FOR THE YUCATAN CHANNEL DISTURBANCE...SRN STREAM NEGATIVE
TILT S/W SHIFTING E-NE ACROSS YUCATAN AND CENTRAL AMERICA TODAY
HAS MOVED OVER LLVL TROFFING IN SAME LOCATION...WITH VIGOROUS
MID LEVEL TURNING SEEN IN WATER VAPOR IMAGERY JUST OFF W TIP OF
CUBA. IR AND VIS IMAGERY SUGGEST LLVL TURNING AND CLOUD LINES
FROM SW TO NE OFF E COAST OF YUCATAN...WITH AN 1800 UTC SHIP OB
OF SE WINDS AT 20 KT DIRECTLY UNDERNEATH APPARENT CYCLONIC
TURNING. FURTHER INSPECTION OF VIS IMAGERY SHOWS A MESO LOW NEAR
23N87W...WHERE WE HAVE PUT A LOW ON SFC MAP...AND ANOTHER LOW OR
TWO ALONG A CONVERGENCE LINE OF CONVECTION EXTENDING NE THEN
E-NE ACROSS THE STRAITS AND TO THE KEYS. MID TO UPPER LEVEL
SUPPORT WILL MOVE NE NEXT FEW DAYS...AND ACROSS S FL MON AND MON
EVENING AND DAMPEN AS IT MOVES INTO MORE LAMINAR FLOW ACROSS THE
BAHAMAS AND ADJACENT ATLC MON NIGHT AND TUE. MODELS HAVE BEEN
HINTING AT SOME SFC DEVELOPMENT PAST SEVERAL DAYS...AND IT
APPEARS OBVIOUS THAT A LOW TO MID LEVEL VORTEX WILL MOVE ACROSS
S FL MON AND MON NIGHT...WITH ASSOCIATED MOISTURE AND CONVECTION
SHIFTING NE ACROSS E SEMICIRCLE. WHETHER OR NOT A SFC LOW IS
REALIZED REMAINS TO BE SEEN...BUT AT THIS TIME AM NOT
ANTICIPATING MORE THAN 20 TO POSSIBLY 25 KT IN A SMALL ZONE
ACROSS N AND NW QUAD OF ANY LOW ASSOCIATED WITH MID LEVEL
SUPPORT. SOME LINGERING TROFFING LIKELY TO PERSIST BEHIND
THROUGH WED. AT THIS TIME...LOOKS LIKE RAINFALL AND POTENTIAL
FOR SEVERE WEATHER ARE MAIN CONCERNS.
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815. islander101010
7:51 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
key west radar shows a significant shower area
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814. stormwatcherCI
7:50 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
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813. WeatherNerdPR
7:50 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
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812. cchsweatherman
7:49 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Keep this in mind when considering the computer model runs. Invest 90L was just initialized within the past couple hours and the data associated with the system has not entered through the various computer models except the BAM suite. So with that being said, we will get a better idea as to how the computer models handle the situation later this evening and overnight.
Member Since: April 14, 2007 Posts: 8 Comments: 5169
811. GTcooliebai
7:49 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting NCHurricane2009:


The models may not be well-initialized with this system. Sometimes current satellite observations are better than the models...& by golly 90L just keeps getting better organized and fast....
I think the models are still on vacation in the Caribbean slurping on their pineapple martinis.
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
810. NCHurricane2009
7:48 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
From the NHC 2PM EDT discussion!!!!

GULF OF MEXICO...
A SHARP UPPER TROUGH REMAINS OVER THE CENTRAL GULF EXTENDING
FROM 27N90W ACROSS NE YUCATAN PENINSULA/YUCATAN CHANNEL INTO THE
W CARIBBEAN NEAR 21N86W SUPPORTING A SURFACE TROUGH THAT AT
05/1500 UTC EXTENDS FROM 27N87W 23N87W THROUGH THE YUCATAN
CHANNEL INTO THE W CARIBBEAN NEAR 21N86W GENERATING SCATTERED TO
HEAVY SHOWERS WITH SCATTERED THUNDERSTORMS
S OF 23N E OF THE
SURFACE TROUGH THROUGH THE STRAITS OF FLORIDA. THIS UPPER TROUGH
IS ALSO AMPLIFYING THE UPPER RIDGE THAT COVERS THE CARIBBEAN AND
W ATLC WITH THE AXIS EXTENDING ACROSS HAITI THROUGH THE W ATLC
TO OVER NE FLORIDA. THIS UPPER RIDGE IS DRAWING TROPICAL
MOISTURE N OVER THE E GULF OF MEXICO GENERATING SCATTERED
SHOWERS WITH POSSIBLE ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS ARE S OF 27N E OF
THE SURFACE TROUGH TO OVER THE FLORIDA PENINSULA. THIS AREA IS
BEING CLOSELY MONITORED FOR POSSIBLE FURTHER DEVELOPMENT.


Unbelievable!!!
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 528 Comments: 3706
809. wunderkidcayman
7:48 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
ok I am leaving and I'll be back in about 2-3hours to see what has changed with 90L
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 12510
808. NCHurricane2009
7:43 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting SPLbeater:
GFS and ECMWF barely show anything from this system...NOGAPS appears most aggressive, with some weak development. This 90L might not make it....maybe, but maybe not...


The models may not be well-initialized with this system. Sometimes current satellite observations are better than the models...& by golly 90L just keeps getting better organized and fast....
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 528 Comments: 3706
807. TropicalAnalystwx13
7:43 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Link

You cannot link animations from there. I do not know why.

Levi uses a script to animate those images and post them here, but I do not know any other way.

"This script should be referenced with a METHOD of POST. If you don't understand this, see this forms overview."
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32528
806. Bergeron
7:42 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting WxGeekVA:




As the above map shows, shear has actually been decreasing over the past few hours.


I know that...I said picking up in 18 Hours
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805. Stormchaser2007
7:41 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15946
804. TropicalAnalystwx13
7:41 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting Bergeron:


Not hardly


25 knots and decreasing.

Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32528
803. WxGeekVA
7:41 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting Bergeron:


It's a very shallow system right now. Wind shear and zonal shear are going to pickup over the next 18 hours...very limited window...if it stays shallow, could make STS...fairly low chance though




As the above map shows, shear has actually been decreasing over the past few hours.
Member Since: September 3, 2011 Posts: 13 Comments: 3476
802. TropicalAnalystwx13
7:41 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting WxGeekVA:
Only thing that I haven't seen much about yet, is do the wind speeds meet the criteria for classification?

It was initialized with winds of 30 mph.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32528
801. SPLbeater
7:39 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting WxGeekVA:
Only thing that I haven't seen much about yet, is do the wind speeds meet the criteria for classification?


ASCAT showed 10-20 knots on southeast, east side. 20 knots on N side. So not good enough, even if it was closed.

:)
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
800. Bergeron
7:39 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

Wind shear is going to stay low...Go back and read Dr. Masters' post below.


Not hardly

Member Since: October 19, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 101
799. TropicalAnalystwx13
7:37 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting Bergeron:


It's a very shallow system right now. Wind shear and zonal shear are going to pickup over the next 18 hours...very limited window...if it stays shallow, could make STS...fairly low chance though

Wind shear is going to stay low...Go back and read Dr. Masters' post below.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32528
798. SPLbeater
7:37 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
GFS and ECMWF barely show anything from this system...NOGAPS appears most aggressive, with some weak development. This 90L might not make it....maybe, but maybe not...
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
797. Bergeron
7:37 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting CybrTeddy:
The dry air rapping into the core will legitimize this as a sub-tropical cyclone, that with the cool SSTs.


SST's are 27C in the area
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796. Stormchaser2007
7:37 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
On NRL

Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15946
795. NCHurricane2009
7:37 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
That's closed.

End of story.



ZOOM



OMG!!!! Are those surface wind barbs for real? Man...this is a rapidly developing situation indeed...
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 528 Comments: 3706
794. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
7:35 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 175 Comments: 54858
793. stormwatcherCI
7:35 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting kmanislander:
At least we are getting some much needed rain. Thunder is rolling. Good thing you skipped T.O.C. this year LOL.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8426
792. Bergeron
7:35 PM GMT on February 05, 2012
Quoting RTSplayer:
Looks like TD status is practically a given now?

Amazing.

NHC will probably wait 6 to 12 before giving it TD status. That is, unless it really blows up right away.


It's a very shallow system right now. Wind shear and zonal shear are going to pickup over the next 18 hours...very limited window...if it stays shallow, could make STS...fairly low chance though
Member Since: October 19, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 101

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