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One of Those Weeks
Tuesday, 24 July 2012 12:41
The weather has been making me a bit depressed lately for several reason. First, because it's summer and I am NOT a summer person. We've had record or near record heat for long periods lately. It's not so bad except my electric bill has gone through the roof for having to run the AC almost constantly.

And also because we're in another one of the typical summer storm patterns where we have a chance for severe storms every day for a week at a time. A nearly stationary frontal zone is bouncing around the region bringing chances for severe storms every day this week.

And finally, my weather station is misbehaving. I haven't been able to report temperature data for longer than I can remember. The stupid thing keeps dropping the sensor and I'm running out of options. I've tried changing the frequency and moving the sensor and so far nothing seems to help. And, my computer crashed, I had to reformat and reload everything, and I still have to install and re-configure the weather software. I'm not looking forward to that. But since the stupid sensor keeps getting dropped, I haven't been too motivated to mess with the software install.

AND... my infrequent blogging pattern continues. Because of the computer crash, I lost a bit of blogging data. So I will do my best to catch up with what I have.

The end of June - beginning of July saw one of the first significant severe events of the year. (Below is a post from the Chicago NWS office detailing the lack of severe weather this year.) From June 28 to July 1, we were issued no less than five Severe Thunderstorm Warnings, two Severe Thunderstorm Watches, four Special Statements for strong storms, and a couple of Nowcasts.

Early last week (I lost the exact data) we had another round of severe storms blast through the area. Lots of communities lost power for several hours, some for most of a day or more. We experienced nothing sinister except for a power outage the morning AFTER the storms came through. I can only assume we lost our power because they were working on the lines or something.

This morning we had another blast of severe storms. A Severe Thunderstorm Watch was issued just before 5:00 a.m. and a Warning shortly after 6:00 a.m. We had several large limbs down and our full garbage can was blown across the street. I've heard reports of lots of large trees down around town, and a roof was blown off an auto parts store onto one of the major highways through town. I keep hearing reports of power out all over town, stop lights out, etc. Our power flickered off and on for awhile but so far we are still OK.

In addition to the several rounds of severe weather, from June 27 to July 2 we were issued over twenty Heat Advisories, Air Quality Alerts, and Special Statements for heat, air quality, and ozone action days. It's the summer sweltering poison air again.

The rest of the week brings slight chances for severe weather every day at least through Thursday. And it's going to continue to be hot. Record or near record temperatures are expected tomorrow again.

In addition to the "Tranquil Severe Weather" report, the Chicago NWS office posted the June "look back". Summary: it was hot and dry.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENTNATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CHICAGO/ROMEOVILLE IL
840 AM CDT SUN JUL 1 2012


A LOOK BACK AT THE CLIMATE FOR THE MONTH OF JUNE 2012 FOR CHICAGO AND ROCKFORD...

AT CHICAGO...THE AVERAGE HIGH TEMPERATURE WAS 85.5 DEGREES WHICH IS 5.8 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL. THE AVERAGE LOW TEMPERATURE WAS 62.4 DEGREES WHICH IS 4.3 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL. THE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE FOR THE MONTH WAS 74.0 DEGREES WHICH IS 5.1 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL. 0.90 INCHES OF PRECIPITATION WAS RECORDED WHICH IS 2.55 INCHES BELOW NORMAL.

THERE WAS 1 RECORD SET AT CHICAGO FOR THE MONTH OF JUNE. IT WAS ON JUNE 19TH WHEN THE LOW TEMPERATURE ONLY DROPPED TO 78 DEGREES. THIS BROKE THE RECORD FOR HIGHEST MINIMUM TEMPERATURE FOR THAT DATE WHICH HAD PREVIOUSLY BEEN 75 DEGREES SET IN 1931.

AT ROCKFORD...THE AVERAGE HIGH TEMPERATURE WAS 85.7 DEGREES WHICH IS 4.6 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL. THE AVERAGE LOW TEMPERATURE WAS 60.1 DEGREES WHICH IS 1.6 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL. THE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE FOR THE MONTH WAS 72.9 DEGREES WHICH IS 3.1 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL. 0.66 INCHES OF PRECIPITATION WAS RECORDED WHICH IS 3.99 INCHES BELOW NORMAL.

THERE WERE 2 RECORDS SET OR TIED AT ROCKFORD DURING THE MONTH OF JUNE. THE FIRST WAS ON JUNE 19TH WHEN THE LOW TEMPERATURE ONLY DROPPED TO 76 DEGREES. THIS BROKE THE RECORD FOR HIGHEST MINIMUM TEMPERATURE FOR THAT DATE WHICH HAD PREVIOUSLY BEEN 74 SET BACK IN 1953. THE SECOND RECORD WAS ON JUNE 20TH WHEN THE LOW TEMPERATURE DROPPED TO 73 DEGREES. THIS TIED THE RECORD FOR HIGHEST MINIMUM TEMPERATURE FOR THAT DATE...WHICH OCCURRED IN 1988 AND ALSO 1997.

Statement as of 5:42 am CDT on June 19, 2012
Tranquil severe weather season thus far...


The Spring and thus far this meteorological Summer has been dry... and with that has also come a well below normal severe weather season. The jet stream has remained primarily to the west and north of the area... and rich low-level moisture has been scarce for any extended period of time. These are two critical factors in wind shear and instability respectively which contribute to severe storm environments. In addition... the very warm Spring often provided scenarios where the atmosphere was capped... not allowing for the development of thunderstorms.
 
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