After a mild and dry start, this December has seen a series of significant snowstorms affect the lower 48 states coast-to-coast. Some 65% of the country had snow cover as of December 29th compared to just 22.7% last year at this time.
weatherhistorian, • 11:04 PM GMT on December 29, 2012
Madison, Wisconsin endured (and many enjoyed!) its fourth greatest 24-hour snowfall on record this past Tuesday-Wednesday, December 19-20 with 15.2”. Other sites in southern Wisconsin picked up 20” of snow, the highest amounts for winter storm ‘Draco’ since it swung out of Colorado earlier in the week.
weatherhistorian, • 8:40 PM GMT on December 21, 2012
Winter storm Draco (as The Weather Channel has designated it) has produced multiple reports of heavy thunder snow so far in Iowa, Wisconsin, and northern Illinois. Although rare, this phenomenon has occurred frequently in the past. Here are two examples (from 1933 and 1960) from Illinois that were particularly devastating.
weatherhistorian, • 8:36 PM GMT on December 20, 2012
The Australian Bureau of Meteorology just released (December 17th) a special statement concerning recent extraordinary rainfalls that occurred in the southwestern portion of Western Australia on December 10-13 (last week). All-time 24-hour precipitation records were broken at several locations when more than 8” (200 mm) of rain fell in less than 24 hours.
weatherhistorian, • 9:54 PM GMT on December 17, 2012
Samoa has just experienced one of its worst tropical storms on record, Cyclone Evan, which churned through the island chain with 100 mph winds on December 12-13. It has so far resulted in at least two fatalities and extensive damage reports are filtering in. Tropical storms occur every year in this region between November and April. Here is a brief historical recap of some of the worst tropical storms to have affected the Samoan island chain.
weatherhistorian, • 10:19 PM GMT on December 13, 2012
November was notable for some major extra-tropical storms that bought flooding rains to the U.S. Northwest and California as well as to England and Wales in Europe. A record heat wave affected southeastern Australia. One of the most intense typhoons of the year, Super Typhoon Bopha, developed unusually far south in the Western Pacific and eventually made landfall on Mindanao Island in the southern Philippines in early December killing hundreds.
weatherhistorian, • 7:57 PM GMT on December 11, 2012
A strong EF-2 tornado swept through the Auckland, New Zealand suburb of Hobsonville on Thursday December 6th killing three and injuring at least seven. About 150 homes were damaged in the Hobsonville and Whenuapai Districts. Hours later a smaller tornado hit the hot springs resort of Rotorua 235 kilometers southeast of Auckland. It was the 2nd fatal tornado event in as many years for New Zealand.
weatherhistorian, • 8:24 PM GMT on December 07, 2012
December has started off as one of the mildest on record for most of the U.S. east of the Rockies. Many cities broke or tied their all-time December monthly records for warmest day on Monday, December 3rd and at least 500 towns and cities broke at their daily record highs at some point between December 1st and December 5th. Here is a brief recap.
weatherhistorian, • 9:37 PM GMT on December 05, 2012
The five-day series of storms, involving three systems in all between November 28-December 2, that affected central and northern California finally ended on Sunday. Some very impressive precipitation amounts were recorded in the central and especially northern regions of the state but damage and flooding was minimal thanks to periods of calm between each storm system.
weatherhistorian, • 8:45 PM GMT on December 03, 2012