Top Weather Events of 2009: U.S. edition
* Wintry end to 2009: Full Forecast *
In a previous post, I highlighted my choices for the top 5 D.C. metro region weather events of 2009. Here are my choices for the top 5 continental U.S. weather events (as before, see the end of this post for my criteria for selecting them.)
1) The something for everyone storm: The week of December 7 was one of the most active weeks weather-wise in many years. As reported previously, the storm significantly affected two-thirds of the nation with a menagerie of wild weather including blizzard conditions, hurricane force winds, heavy rains and flooding, and freezing rain.
2) Severe Storms: Tornadoes along with many reports of hail and wind damage occurred over the south-central states on the February 10th. A cluster of tornadoes touched down across parts of central Oklahoma with four tornadoes striking the metro Oklahoma City (here). (Not as notable except that it occurred in New York's central park was a severe thunderstorm with winds up to 80 mph downed hundreds of trees, which in turn crushed several nearby parked cars.)
3) Red River Floods: Snow melt on saturated and largely frozen ground caused the Red River along the North Dakota and Minnesota border to crest at record levels at Fargo. Fortunately river levels were just under the cities highest levees, but flood related incidents proved costly in lives and property (here).
4) Southeast Floods: Several days of heavy rain led to severe flooding on September 21st and 22nd in Georgia, Alabama, eastern Tennessee, and western North Carolina (here). Many areas in northern Georgia are reported to have exceeded the 100-year rainfall total for a 24-hour period. The floods were responsible for several fatalities and damage is estimated to be 250 million dollars. On the plus side, the rains effectively ended the long term drought in the southeast in one fell swoop.
5) Unremarkable hurricane season: The 2009 Atlantic hurricane season experienced the fewest named storms and hurricanes since 1997, probably due in part to El Nino. For the first time in three years, no hurricanes hit the U.S (here)
In selecting entries to the lists, it's worth mentioning that the main considerations are (or should be) whether the event is extreme and/or high impact at some location during some given time period.
Refer to my earlier post on the top 5 D.C. metro region events for an explanation of what I mean by extreme weather.
In the end, as with most top whatever lists, my selections are largely subjective and perhaps unrepresentative with respect to possibly more widely shared judgments. There are certainly more than a handful of possibilities in each category, but I've stuck to just five so there is abundant opportunity to add your suggestions.
Please feel free to comment on my opinions and offer your own choices on the top weather events of 2009.
| December 31, 2009; 11:30 AM ET
Categories: Tracton, U.S. Weather
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