Climatological Report (Monthly)
Issued by NWS Buffalo, NY

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608 CXUS51 KBUF 050421 CLMBUF CLIMATE REPORT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BUFFALO NY 622 AM EST FRI JAN 1 2016 ................................... ...THE BUFFALO NY CLIMATE SUMMARY FOR THE MONTH OF DECEMBER 2015... CLIMATE NORMAL PERIOD 1981 TO 2010 CLIMATE RECORD PERIOD 1871 TO 2015 WEATHER OBSERVED NORMAL DEPART LAST YEAR`S VALUE DATE(S) VALUE FROM VALUE DATE(S) NORMAL ................................................................ TEMPERATURE (F) RECORD HIGH 74 12/03/1982 LOW -10 12/25/1980 HIGHEST 71 12/14 57 12/24 LOWEST 23 12/28 15 12/31 AVG. MAXIMUM 48.6 36.1 12.5 38.8 AVG. MINIMUM 35.6 24.1 11.5 28.3 MEAN 42.1 30.1 12.0 33.5 DAYS MAX >= 90 0 0.0 0.0 0 DAYS MAX <= 32 1 10.6 -9.6 8 DAYS MIN <= 32 11 24.3 -13.3 23 DAYS MIN <= 0 0 0.5 -0.5 0 PRECIPITATION (INCHES) RECORD MAXIMUM 8.71 1990 MINIMUM 0.69 1943 TOTALS 2.90 3.89 -0.99 2.15 DAYS >= .01 16 11 DAYS >= .10 10 8 DAYS >= .50 2 0 DAYS >= 1.00 0 0 GREATEST 24 HR. TOTAL 0.88 12/26 TO 12/27 SNOWFALL (INCHES) RECORDS TOTAL 82.7 2001 TOTALS 1.0 27.4 -26.4 11.3 SINCE 7/1 1.0 36.2 -35.2 SNOWDEPTH AVG. 0 4 -4 1 DAYS >= 1.0 0 6.5 -6.5 3 GREATEST SNOW DEPTH 1 12/29 6 12/12 12/11 24 HR TOTAL 0.9 MM DEGREE_DAYS HEATING TOTAL 703 1082 -379 968 SINCE 7/1 1747 2415 -668 2266 COOLING TOTAL 0 0 0 0 SINCE 1/1 657 544 113 516 .................................................. WIND (MPH) AVERAGE WIND SPEED 10.3 HIGHEST WIND SPEED/DIRECTION 38/240 HIGHEST GUST SPEED/DIRECTION 49/250 DATE 12/24 SKY COVER POSSIBLE SUNSHINE (PERCENT) MM NUMBER OF DAYS FAIR 0 NUMBER OF DAYS PC 8 NUMBER OF DAYS CLOUDY 23 AVERAGE RH (PERCENT) 75 WEATHER CONDITIONS. NUMBER OF DAYS WITH THUNDERSTORM 1 MIXED PRECIP 0 HEAVY RAIN 1 RAIN 4 LIGHT RAIN 21 FREEZING RAIN 1 LT FREEZING RAIN 2 HAIL 0 HEAVY SNOW 0 SNOW 1 LIGHT SNOW 5 SLEET 1 FOG 24 FOG W/VIS <= 1/4 MILE 2 HAZE 5 - INDICATES NEGATIVE NUMBERS. R INDICATES RECORD WAS SET OR TIED. MM INDICATES DATA IS MISSING. T INDICATES TRACE AMOUNT. && ...REMARKABLE WARMTH...LACK OF SNOW THIS DECEMBER... DECEMBER 2015 FEATURED WELL ABOVE NORMAL AIR TEMPERATURES THE ENTIRE MONTH...WITH ALL BUT ONE DAY FINISHING ABOVE NORMAL. UNPRECEDENTED WARMTH WITHIN A STRONG EL NINO GLOBAL PATTERN BROUGHT DECEMBER ITS WARMEST MEAN AIR TEMPERATURE ON RECORD...SMASHING THE PREVIOUS RECORD. IT WAS A RELATIVELY DRY MONTH...WITH THE LAST WEEK TURNING ACTIVE WITH STORMS AND FINALLY SNOW. THE AVERAGE AIR TEMPERATURE THIS MONTH WAS 42.1F WHICH IS AMAZINGLY 12F DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL...AND ECLIPSED THE PREVIOUS WARMEST DECEMBER BY 4.5F DEGREES. THIS MONTH`S TEMPERATURE DEVIATION...BETWEEN THE NOW WARMEST DECEMBER...AND PREVIOUS WARMEST DECEMBER...CANNOT BE MATCHED BY THE OTHER 11 MONTHS. ONLY MARCH OF 2012 COMES CLOSE...YET STILL 2.9 DEGREES SEPARATED FIRST AND SECOND PLACE. SEVERAL DAILY TEMPERATURE RECORDS WERE SET THIS MONTH INCLUDING NEW RECORD HIGHS FOR THE 14TH...23RD AND 24TH. THE 71 DEGREES ON THE 14TH WAS THE SECOND WARMEST DECEMBER DAY ON RECORD. THERE WERE 13 DAYS WITH HIGH TEMPERATURES ABOVE 50F...GREATEST NUMBER ON DECEMBER RECORD...AND ECLIPSED THE PRIOR RECORD SET BACK IN 1982 BY 2 DAYS. THE AVERAGE NUMBER OF DAYS IN DECEMBER ABOVE 50F IS 4 DAYS. THERE WERE 21 DAYS WITH THE AIR TEMPERATURE REMAINING AT OR ABOVE FREEZING. THIS ALSO IS THE GREATEST NUMBER OF DAYS ON DECEMBER RECORD...TOPPING THE OLD MARK OF 18 SET BACK IN 1923. THE LAST FOUR MONTHS OF THE YEAR...AVERAGED TOGETHER...MADE FOR THE WARMEST END TO A CALENDAR YEAR ON RECORD. PRECIPITATION FOR DECEMBER WAS BELOW NORMAL...WITH ONLY 2.90 INCHES MEASURED. THE MAJORITY OF THE MONTH WAS DRY WITH ROUGHLY AN INCH OF PRECIPITATION MEASURED THROUGH CHRISTMAS DAY. THE LAST WEEK FINISHED WET AS SEVERAL STORM SYSTEMS PASSED THROUGH THE REGION. THE GREATEST DAILY PRECIPITATION TOTAL OCCURRED ON THE 27TH WHEN 0.73 INCHES OF PRECIPITATION WAS RECORDED. A RECORD BREAKING LACK OF SNOWFALL CONTINUED DEEP INTO DECEMBER. THE FIRST MEASURABLE SNOWFALL OCCURRED ON DECEMBER 18TH WHEN A BAND OF LAKE EFFECT SNOW FROM LAKE ERIE REACHED AS FAR NORTH AS THE AIRPORT TO BRIEFLY WHITEN THE GROUND. THIS FIRST MEASURABLE SNOW BREAKS THE FORMER DATE OF DECEMBER 3RD...A RECORD THAT STOOD FOR MORE THAN A CENTURY AND WAS SET BACK IN 1899. LATE IN THE MONTH A WINTRY MIX FELL ON THE 28TH YIELDING 0.9 INCHES OF SNOW AND SLEET AT THE BUFFALO AIRPORT BEFORE PRECIPITATION CHANGED OVER TO FREEZING RAIN. THOUGH LAKE EFFECT FLURRIES FLEW THE LAST DAYS OF THE MONTH...THIS WOULD BE THE LAST MEASURABLE SNOWFALL FOR THE MONTH...MAKING THIS DECEMBER 2015 THE LEAST SNOWIEST DECEMBER ON RECORD WITH ONLY 1.0 INCHES OF SNOW MEASURED. THE PREVIOUS RECORD WAS 1.1 INCHES SET BACK IN 1891 AND 1889. THE UPPER AIR PATTERN THIS MONTH PREDOMINATELY FEATURED A TROUGH OF LOW PRESSURE OVER THE WESTERN UNITED STATES...AND A RIDGE OF HIGH PRESSURE OVER THE EASTERN HALF OF THE UNITED STATES. A STRONG WEST TO EAST FLOW ACROSS THE COUNTRY LOCKED COLD AIR OVER CANADA AND ALLOWED MILD AIR TEMPERATURES TO EXPAND NORTHWARD FROM THE SOUTH. THIS BROUGHT MANY UNSEASONABLY WARM DAYS THIS MONTH. FOLLOWING A MILD LATE AUTUMN THE DURATION AND DEGREE OF WARMTH IN DECEMBER ALLOWED FOR A FEW SPRING FLOWERS TO APPEAR. STORM SYSTEMS PASSED BY THE REGION TO THE WEST AND EAST THIS MONTH...A COMMON TRACK THUS FAR THIS WINTER SEASON. THERE WAS ONE MODERATE LAKE EFFECT SNOW EVENT. BEHIND A COLD FRONT ON THE 18TH LAKE EFFECT SNOW GENERATED EAST OF LAKE ERIE. THIS BAND OF SNOW BROUGHT THE AIRPORT ITS FIRST MEASURABLE SNOW OF THE SEASON...BREAKING THE FORMER LATEST MEASURABLE SNOW EVER RECORD BY 15 DAYS...WHILE ALSO PRODUCING UP TO A FOOT OF SNOW ACROSS SKI COUNTRY. THE LONE BELOW NORMAL DAY THIS MONTH OCCURRED ON THE 19TH...AND EVEN THIS WAS JUST 1 DEGREE BELOW THE DAILY NORMAL. ON THE 28TH A POWERFUL STORM SYSTEM PASSED ACROSS THE CENTRAL GREAT LAKES REGION...AND SENT AN AREA OF PRECIPITATION OVER WESTERN NEW YORK...WHICH REMAINED BELOW FREEZING AT THE ONSET. THIS SYSTEM BROUGHT A TENTH OF AN INCH OF ICE OVER SURFACES BEFORE WARMER AIR BROUGHT SURFACE TEMPERATURES ABOVE FREEZING. THE BEGINNING OF A SECOND LAKE EFFECT SNOW EVENT STARTED IN THE WANING HOURS OF THE MONTH...DROPPING LIGHT SNOW SOUTH OF BUFFALO AS THE NEW YEAR RANG IN. LAKE ERIE`S WATER TEMPERATURE HAD VERY LITTLE RANGE...DUE TO THE RECORD WARMTH OVER THE LAKE. THE WATER TEMPERATURE DROPPED FROM A RECORD HIGH FOR THE DATE OF 47F ON THE 3RD DOWN TO RECORD HIGH FOR THE DATE 42F DEGREES AT MONTHS END. WINDS AVERAGED 10.3 MPH...WHICH IS BELOW NORMAL AND THE HIGHEST WIND GUST WAS 49 MPH ON CHRISTMAS EVE. IN ALL AN AMAZINGLY WARM MONTH...WITH MANY DAYS FEELING LIKE MID AUTUMN...OR MID SPRING. && THOMAS $$

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