Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Stormy Saturday

Another couple of prefect days ahead but the Saturday looks like some scattered thunderstorms are possible.  Not expecting anything severe to materialize but some thunder and lightning and pockets of heavy rain are possible.  Sunday looks to be dry but cooler.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Great Week Ahead...

I want to first thank everyone who attended the Skywarn training in Kokomo yesterday.  It was a great experience. 

The week ahead is going to be great.  Warm sunny days with temperatures around 60 degrees to start and finishing in the 70's at the end of the week and for the weekend.  Enjoy!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Skywarn Training Available Saturday In Kokomo

I want to encourage everyone to come attend the Skywarn training Saturday in Kokomo.  It is at 1 PM at the Howard County Government Annex (120 E. Mulberry St, 1st Floor Conference Room) and will last about two hours.

The training is provided by the National Weather Service in Indianapolis.

Even if you are not interested in organized spotting activities, I still want to encourage you to attend and to learn about severe weather.

If nothing else you'll see me there.  *smile*

Friday, March 19, 2010

More Winter Fail

Winter continues to fail even when it is supposed to be over...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Severe Weather Preparedness Week

I haven't forgotten about Severe Weather Preparedness Week.  I hope you have not either.  It is important for and your family.  Lots can be said about severe weather and to be honest, it seems like it always happens to someone else.  Maybe we are inconvenienced now and then with the power going out and sometimes a few limbs blow down in the year.  But now and then it might not be exactly that easy...

Since 1950, Howard County has seen 15 tornadoes. That averages out to three per decade.  Of those two have produced fatalities and nearly half have resulted in injury.  Of course mother nature doesn't care about averages.  You need to be prepared each and every day.

The single most important thing you can do to protect yourself and your family is to have a weather radio.  Today many people call them an All Hazards radio.  You can find them an electronics retailers, grocery stores, and discount stores.  If you don't have one, get one.  Make sure you have it set up and that it has fresh batteries.  Storms happen at all hours and any more it seems most fatalities happen at night.  You don't want to be sleeping when the storm hits.

Also don't forget to have some plan of action for safety at home or at work.   You need to know what to do before you have to do it. 

I also want to urge you to sign up for severe weather alerts for your cell phone.  Many TV stations have alerts free.  Here is a quick list...

Channel 8 Cell Phone Alerts
Channel 6 Cell Phone Alerts
Channel 13 Cell Phone Alerts

There are other options too.

Weather USA Alerts
The Weather Channel

For me, I personally use Storm Now which has one of the most reliable and customizable alert systems available.  However it does cost two dollars per month. 

If you are a into weather, I might suggest a subscription to WeatherTap which has an excellent set of forecast tools and includes some mobile alert options too.  This service is $7.95 a month.

I also want to stress lightning safety.  So many times I see people casually ignore thunder and even visible lightning.  If you are outdoors, take cover.  I just recently heard a very sad story about someone who had her whole family touched by lightning.  Needless to say that story reinforced the importance of going indoors when you hear thunder and staying indoors for 30 minutes past the last lightning strike.

As always, remember Kokomo-Weather will be working to alert you to severe weather with as much advance notice as possible.  Let's have a safe severe weather season.

(More information coming soon...)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

2009-2010 Winter Report (Final)

Today is the start of Severe Weather Preparedness Week.  I will start tomorrow giving you some information on severe weather and tips to prepare.  However today I want to give a final report on winter.  

As you may remember, I gave a preliminary grade of F back at the end of January.  I was rather harsh with my thinking and honestly not much has changed.  Winter was rather frustrating.  So many people had almost unbelievable amounts of snow.

Columbus, OH had 49.9" of snow and that was 28.2" above normal.  A record 30.1" fell in February.  Peoria, IL received 41.5" with 20.6" more than normal.  And of course there was the snow for cities in the mid Atlantic states.  I won't even bother to recap totals but there were multiple huge snows.

Even Indianapolis was above average with 33".  That was 11.2" above normal with the bulk of the snow falling in February.  Kokomo also was above average.  (I believe our average to be around 27".) We finished with 32".  That is less than Indianapolis and South Bend 53.3" or less than an inch of normal.

So you would think being 6" above average in Kokomo would make for a nice grade.  It doesn't in my mind.  Why?  We never received any snow over 6" and after our largest snowfall of 5.5" on February 9th & 10th, we were all but done with accumulating snow.  There were just two snows of 1" the rest of the month.

It was pretty disappointing to see others get significant amounts of accumulating snow just a few counties to our south.  One item of note is that even though we finished above normal with our snow, we are down overall for precipitation.  Odd, eh?

Two things make up winter, snow and cold.  Like the snow where we finished above normal but disappointing. the cold was the same disappointment.  We finished two degrees below normal but there were never any below zero temperatures realized and no sustained cold for December, January, or February.  Overall the temperatures were mundane like the nickle and dime snowfalls all winter.

Now you might wonder how I did with my prediction of snow days for area county schools.  I went with a total of five and didn't do too bad.  There were three days all four county schools closed.  Those would be January 8th & February 9th and 10th.  

On January 7th, Western closed with the snow storm impending but the three remaining county schools went on time but did so with the full intention of having an early dismissal and all after school activities were canceled.  As per my rules, a snow day counts if any county school closes and one did and three halfway did so now we have snow day number four.

With four snow days of my predicted five, I think I did pretty well.  I could invoke rule that when any county school closes for a weather related delay, I get to count it but I won't.  Eastern did close due to freezing fog on February 12th but the call seemed a bit over cautionary and I will now count it which leaves me with an 80% success rate on my prediction.  (I did miss out on a couple snow days over winter break too.)

So overall what is my grade for winter?  I will generously award a C- for winter.  That is a pretty good bump from my F I previously was thinking.

Now while I have given winter its final grade, it still might not be over.  There have been some signals there might be some late season blast.  I am not real confident it will happen and to be honest, I am done with winter and want spring like everyone else.  

Look tomorrow for info on severe weather season.

Friday, March 12, 2010

More Rain...

Rain will continue today with a slight chance for a stray thunderstorm or two.  A better chance for thunderstorms in southeast Indiana, southwest Ohio, and parts of Kentucky.  Rain will continue to be in the forecast though the weekend with cooler temperatures in the 40's.  Things clear up for the work week and warmer temperatures are also coming back.  However they currently don't seem as warm as we experienced this week. 

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Thunderstorms Today

Looks like there will be thunderstorms here by 9 AM.  Not expecting any severe weather like was experienced in the south yesterday but heavy rain is possible.  Over half an inch likely by this evening. 

The first wave this morning will give way to a few hours of sunshine and heating before more thunderstorm happen in the afternoon.  There is a better chance for an isolated severe storm or even a weak tornado this afternoon.

I will be keeping an eye on things all day and keep you alerted should our threat increase.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Is Winter Behind Us?

I don't see any winter threats or hints of its return looming on the forecast models. Spring appears to be here and it look to be a wet start.  Much like winter, there is no big system out there but instead an almost day after day threat for a some rain and moderate temperatures in the 50's each day. 

In the next could of days, I will recap our winter and give the final grade. 

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

We're warming up...

Yep, no winter for now and some signs of spring with a warm up in progress.  Sunny days, cool nights are on tap through the weekend.  Temps around 50 on the weekend.

Monday, March 1, 2010

No tornadoes in February the first since 1950...

sNOw Threat

Meteorological spring is here and I don't see much threat from snow accumulations this week.  A dusting of snow is possible Tuesday but overall look for continued melting of the snow piles.  Brown grass is everywhere now and days are noticeably longer. 

Still a significant weather event for next week.  Questions about how the rain changes over to snow and when exactly that happens.  With the snow pack taking a solid hit this week, this might be more of a rain event for us.  Possibly some severe weather but mostly thinking that more south of Indiana.

We have 32" of recorded snow in Kokomo for the winter season.  That is above average.