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.

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