Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Even more interesting, the last time a blue moon occurred on New Year's Eve was 19 years ago in 1990. The next time it is expected to occur on New Year's Eve is 2028.
Saturday, December 26, 2009
Hottest: 94° on June 25, August 9 & 16
Coldest: -14° on January 16 & 17 (followed closely behind by -12° on February 5)
Precipitation for the year was about 5" above normal.
Thursday, December 24, 2009
The record high for Christmas was 63 degrees set back in 1982. Ironically, the record low was set the following year of -13 below zero in 1983. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
Travel will be hazardous to outright dangerous anywhere from Chicago westward into the central and northern plains. Blizzard or near blizzard conditions will cause whiteouts and render some roadways impassable.
We will be on the warm side of this storm with the dominant weather maker being rain and wind through the Christmas holiday which has put our chance at a white Christmas at nearly zero. But remember; be careful for what you wish for.
Sunday, December 13, 2009
It is the winter solstice, and marks the time when the direct rays of the sun are over the Tropic of Capricorn (south of the equator). After December 21, we begin to gain a little daylight each day heading towards spring in March.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Here are some previous cold temps across greater Toledo:
- 28° - December 5
- 23° - March 2
- 19º - February 5
- 15° - February 4
- 14° - December 5
- 12° - March 4
- 5° - March 3 & Feb 24
- 2° - February 6
A high wind warning is in effect into early tonight. Winds will be 25 to 40 mph with some gusts exceeding 50 mph. The strongest winds will be this afternoon into this evening.
Wind gusts of this magnitude are enough to affect trees and power lines, as well as high profile vehicles.
Wind chills tonight through Thursday will be near or a little below zero.
The winds will also cause the western part of Lake Erie's water levels to drop.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Things began to start hitting the ground around 4-5 pm in some of our southern sections. The onset of the precip has been snow, and a mix of snow/sleet/rain. With temps near 32, some of the rain has been freezing on untreated surfaces.
The colder sections of our viewing area (west of I-75 in northern Ohio and southern Michigan) will be the last to see the precip change to just plain rain tonight.
The storm will keep rainy conditions (and maybe even some thunder) around tonight into the morning rush hour Wednesday. As cold air filters in after daybreak, rain will begin to mix with some wet snow (northwest to southeast) during the morning and midday hours. There will be no sleet or freezing rain -- just rain and snow mixed. The precip will be in the form of just snow in the afternoon. Some snow showers will be enough to put down a light accumulation, a coating to 1", in some areas.
Of bigger concern Wednesday will be the winds. Wind speeds will continue increasing in the morning, reaching sustained strengths between 25 & 40 mph, with some gusts exceeding 50 mph during the day.
Following this will be some of the coldest air since late February/early March on Thursday and Thursday night. Highs will struggle to reach the mid 20s Thursday afternoon, and gusty winds will create wind chills near or slightly below zero. With some breaks in the clouds Thursday night and Friday morning, lows will drop to near 10°.
Monday, December 7, 2009
Light snow should develop Tuesday afternoon, and transition to a wintry mix during the evening hours. A minor snow accumulation will occur, especially north and west of I-75, late in the day into the evening.
The wintry mix will transition to all rain Tuesday night through Wednesday morning. Cold air will return around midday Wednesday and change the leftover rain back to snow for Wednesday afternoon. Scattered snow showers will continue Wednesday night and Thursday. A new light accumulation of snow is possible as the storm exits.
Another factor of concern will be extremely strong winds. Gusts may exceed 40 mph Wednesday afternoon, and could top 50 mph late Wednesday into Thursday. This combined with the coldest air of the season for Thursday will create wind chills in the single digits.
Sunday, December 6, 2009
This storm will produce heavy snow to our west (near and west of Chicago into the upper Great Lakes & midwest through the northern and central plains). Those with travel plans Monday night through early Thursday to points westward need to monitor upcoming forecasts. Blizzard-like conditions may affect parts of the northern plains by Wednesday with significant snowfall accumulations.
Monday, November 30, 2009
A major storm system will approach from the south Wednesday, bringing some rain in the afternoon and steadier rain by evening. As the storm exits Thursday, precip may mix with or change to some wet snow for a few hours. We should not see any accumulation.
A much colder air mass will take residence by late-week. Highs will struggle to break freezing Friday and Saturday, and some overnight lows will dip into the teens. This will be the coldest air since March 12th.
Normal high is now 41°, and normal low is 28°.
Precipitation was only 0.67", which was 2.11" below normal, making it the 5th driest November on record. Precipitation occurred on ten days, and there were a few snowflakes.
Thursday, November 26, 2009
This does not mean it will not be cold. (In fact, current computer models suggest that December will open up on a chilly note.) It just means when the month is totalled up and averaged, the result will be above our climatological normal. We will still have some cold days, but some milder days will outnumber them. Normal precip for December is 2.64" (rain and melted down frozen precip), and the normal snowfall is 8.3"
This does line up with a previous post about the winter ahead. During El Nino winters (and this is one of them), the winter usually averages out to have above normal temps and near or slightly below normal precip.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Thursday, November 19, 2009
We will see some rainfall Tuesday into Wednesday. Colder air will filter into the area, and highs will struggle to get out of the lower 40s for the end of next week.
The biggest concern with holiday travel at this point would just be some rain (and wet roads) Wednesday. Ground and road temps are still quite mild, so there is no threat any icing or anything like that Wednesday.
Columbia Gas of Ohio filed its Gas Cost Recovery (GCR) adjustment for December with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO). The GCR of 49 cents per 100 cubic feet (Ccf) of natural gas will be 70 cents, or 59 percent, lower than December 2008, when it was $1.19.
The typical residential customer using 114 Ccf of natural gas would see a December bill of $92.43, according to company estimates. That bill is down $77.80 compared to December 2008, when it was $170.23.
Next month’s GCR is the second-lowest heating-season gas cost charge in the last eight years. It was 48 cents in the November 2001 through January 2002 quarter.
December is the fourth-highest gas usage month of the year for Columbia’s residential heating customers, and is typically one of the months when bills are highest.
Natural gas costs make up about 60 percent of the typical residential customer’s bill.
Monday, November 16, 2009
This year's Leonids meteor shower peaks on Tuesday, Nov. 17. If forecasters are correct, the shower should produce a mild but pretty sprinkling of meteors over North America followed by a more intense outburst over Asia. The phase of the moon will be new -- setting the stage for what could be one of the best Leonid showers in years.
"We're predicting 20 to 30 meteors per hour over the Americas, and as many as 200 to 300 per hour over Asia," says Bill Cooke of the Meteoroid Environment Office at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center. "Our forecast is in good accord with independent theoretical work by other astronomers."
Leonids are bits of debris from Comet Tempel-Tuttle. Every 33 years the comet visits the inner solar system and leaves a stream of dusty debris in its wake. Many of these streams have drifted across the November portion of Earth's orbit. Whenever our planet hits one, meteors appear to be flying out of the constellation Leo.
"We can predict when Earth will cross a debris stream with pretty good accuracy," says Cooke. "The intensity of the display is less certain, though, because we don't know how much debris is in each stream."
Skies will be partly to mostly cloudy, so viewing potential may be greatly limited in our area.
To see an animation of the meteor exploding, click here.
LIVE CHAT: A scientist from NASA will host a live web chat from 4 to 5 pm this evening (Monday Nov 16). He will answer questions about the Leonids meteor showers. To participate, check out www.nasa.gov. There will be a section to click on to join the chat.
With only one U.S. module left to deliver, the Space Shuttle Program is turning its attention to helping the space station build up a store of replacement parts. There are only half a dozen flights left in the shuttle’s manifest before they stop flying, and as the only vehicle large enough to carry many of the big pieces of equipment into space, several of the flights are devoted to the task. This is the first, however, and as the first this mission is dedicated to taking up the spares of the highest priority.
NASA isn’t nearly done investing in the station, however, and the agenda of Atlantis’ crew makes that clear. In addition to the complex robotics work required to get the spares into place, there are three spacewalks scheduled to go on outside and a complicated rewiring project planned for the crew inside.
However, even with the shuttle crew at the station, resources aren’t unlimited. But unlike the other space shuttles, Atlantis wasn’t outfitted with the system that allows shuttles to draw power from the space station. That means that where recent station assembly missions have lasted up to 17 days, Atlantis has only 11 to get to the station and back.
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Here is a link to a news report and some video.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Hurricane warnings have been posted from the coastal areas from eastern Mississippi to the Florida panhandle.
Get the latest information with our Hurricane Tracker.
Sunday, November 8, 2009
Friday, November 6, 2009
25° Toledo Express, Monroe, Adrian
26° Metcalf Field
27° Lima, Defiance
28° Hillsdale, Findlay
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
One factor that supports this is the effect from El Nino. In periods with strong El Ninos (like the one currently in the Pacific), autumns tend to start cold and then modify a bit...leading to a winter with above normal temps and below normal precipitation. This does not mean the winter will be warm. In fact, big cold spells do occur like a normal winter. However, there tends to be less frequency and duration of them.
El Nino modifies the position and movement of the normal winter jet stream patterns. This allows for the variations between cold and not-so-cold periods, plus less frequent storms (leading to below normal precip). We still see snow, just not as much as a normal winter.
In the short term forecast, after a cold start Friday morning, temperatures will modify nicely over the weekend. Some slightly cooler weather should move in Tuesday of next week, but temps will warm back up a bit later next week.
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Temps were below normal the first 18 days of the month, and above normal 11 of the final 13 days of the month.
The coldest temp was 27° on October 18, and the warmest was 75° last Friday (October 30).
Rainfall totalled 3.94", which was 1.59" above normal.
Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
The cold front will move through tonight, and rain chances will increase greatly as the evening progresses and into the overnight. Some thunderstorms are likely. Rainfall amounts may total between 1/2 and 1 inch.
Winds will really pick up as the storm approaches. Some gusts near 35 mph are possible today, tonight and the first half of Saturday.
Cooler air will ease into the area Saturday morning, and afternoon highs will only be in the low/mid 50s. Sunday's highs will remain in the lower 50s.
This storm will produce occasional rain and storms Friday through Saturday morning. There will be many dry hours during this period, but the occasional rain will be heavy at times.
An analysis of many computer models over the last few days shows there is potential for over an inch of rain with this system. Rainfall estimates have been as low as 1/2 inch, and as high as 2".
A cold front will pass through the area Friday night, and some hours of heavy rainfall look likely between midnight and daybreak Saturday.
By the way...this same storm has already produced some accumulations in the Rockies of 1 to 3 **feet** of snow, with additional snow falling today. Snow will spread into part of the Plains, with western Nebraska and the Dakotas seeing a significant snowfall of 6 to 12".
That threat for snow will move well north of our area, so it will be just rain for us. Colder air will, however, move into the region over the weekend and take highs back down into the lower 50s.
Monday, October 26, 2009
However, 6 out of the last 7 days have had above normal highs, and that warm trend will continue this week and finish out the month.
Normal high for this point of the month is in the upper 50s.
A downburst is a localized blast of wind that rushes down from a cloud, hits the ground, and then spreads out horizontally. Downbursts (aka straight-line winds) can be further classified into macrobursts and microbursts.
Macrobursts affect an area greater than 2 1/2 miles, and can produce winds up to 135 mph. Microbursts affect an area less than 2 1/2 miles, but wind speeds can get as high as 170 mph.
These types of winds can create significant damage in a straight, or linear, pattern. (Whereas a tornado's damage is more circular in nature).
Straight line winds are also quite dangerous for pilots, who experience rapid wind speed and change in direction.
Storm report courtesy NWS Cleveland. Diagram courtesy NOAA/NWS.
Friday, October 23, 2009
Toledo Express Airport's rain stats prior to the start of the rain last evening:
October: 2.62" (surplus of 0.99")
2009: 33.00" (surplus of 5.93")
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
A storm that is currently in the southern Plains will track into the area on Friday. This storm is tapping into moisture from the remnants of Rick -- a hurricane near Baja California which has weakened to a tropical storm in western Mexico.
Current computer models suggest the potential for 1" of rain or more depending on the exact storm track. The clouds, rain and winds off the lake (48° water) will keep Friday cool.
Since we've had quite a cool October, here's a look back on some of our warmer days:
67° - October 20
72° - September 27
80° - September 23
Sunday, October 18, 2009
A nice-warm up is on the way this week, with highs even jumping above normal a few days. Monday marks the first normal high in 3 weeks.
This warm-up follows lows this morning in the 20s -- the coldest temps since mid-April.
Here are the coldest previous temps for Toledo Express:
27° April 12
24° March 21
23° March 20
20° March 14
Monday, October 12, 2009
By the time temps jump next Monday, we may string together 21-straight days of below normal highs.
The normal high has been dropping since late September, and is now 63°.
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Monday, October 5, 2009
A blast of Canadian air will keep highs only in the low/mid 50s this weekend.
Friday, October 2, 2009
Temps will improve a bit early next week, but that will be short-lived as another front brings cooler air for the second half of the week.
Normal highs and lows for this time of October are 69° and 47° respectively.
Thursday, October 1, 2009
A storm system will move through our region tonight into Friday, bringing some steady rain with it.
Rain should develop (west to east) this evening, and pick up in intensity late tonight through Friday morning's rush hour.
Steadier rain should begin to taper by midday, and the afternoon will feature many dry hours and even breaks in the clouds. As of this writing, the dry period looks like it could last through the Friday night football games.
More showers will work back into the area Friday night into Saturday. That rainfall will be a bit more scattered and light.
Computer model rainfall estimates have all come in near or over 1/2 inch. Many of the models are producing 1"+ totals across northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan.
Oct 1 69° / 47°
Oct 31 55° / 37°
Records: 92° High, 15° Low
Normal Precipitation: 2.35"
Times Of Sunrise / Sunset:
Oct 1 7:32 am / 7:17 pm
Oct 31 8:06 am / 6:31 pm
80 Minutes of Daylight Lost (We switch the clocks back an hour on Sunday, November 1)
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
(updated from the post published Wednesday morning)
High pressure has moved overhead, allowing mainly clear skies and light winds.
Locations away from the lake will drop down into the low and mid 30s through 8 am. A few spots to the west and northwest may actually drop to 30-32° for an hour or two. The frost threat should end after about 9 am.
Temperatures near the lake will be in the lower 40s. The lake water is currently 62°, and that will keep those areas from dropping into the 30s.
Make sure to bring in any moveable plants & flowers you have, and cover ones that will remain outside.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
A powerful storm will continue to reside over the northern Great Lakes through Tuesday. This will keep gusty winds in the area today into tonight.
Winds will be sustained at 20 to 30 mph, but occasional gusts will be close to 45 mph. A wind advisory is in effect for the entire viewing area.
Much cooler air will continue to settle into our area the next few days. High temperatures will be hard-pressed to break out of the lower 60s. Lows Tuesday night/Wednesday morning will drop to near 40°, and into the upper 30s Wednesday night/Thursday morning . Areas well northwest of Toledo could see the first frost of the season.
Temps will moderate a bit by the end of the week.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Thank you to all who participated and/or donated to this year's Race For The Cure. This is an event that continues to grow each year, and one that WTOL is very proud to be associated with.
Check out our race page HERE for pictures and clips. We also have video of the 2 hour live coverage on that page as well.
Even though the race is over this year, you can still donate to the NW Ohio Komen charity HERE.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
We have now closed the books on a somewhat cool summer. After crunching all of the numbers, we ended up having about 51% of the days with above normal highs (46% were below normal, and 3% were exactly normal).
Some of these numbers are a little misleading -- a lot of the days with "above" normal highs were just a few degrees above normal. Some of the below normal days were well below normal.
Also -- July is statistically the hottest part of the summer. We actually had the 23 days in July with below normal highs, and never hit 90° during the month.
For the summer season, we used about 83% of our normal air conditioning.
Monday, September 21, 2009
The term equinox suggests equal daylight and darkness. That is true closer to the equator. Our sunrise Tuesday will be at 7:23 am, and the sunset will be at 7:32 pm. We continue to lose about 2-3 minutes of daylight each day. By Saturday, our amount of daylight will slip to just below 12 hours.
Normal high this week ranges 70°-72°, and the lows range 49°-51°. Temps look like they will remain above normal until late in the weekend.
Sunday, September 13, 2009
The supercomputers have been named "Stratus" and are 4 times faster than the prior system. Stratus has the ability to make 69.7 Trillion calculations per second!!!
Interesting facts about Stratus:
- The microprocessors inside Stratus contain 2,000 miles of copper wiring, enough to stretch from Washington, D.C. to the Grand Canyon.
- It would take one person with a calculator 3 million years to tabulate the number of calculations that Stratus can perform in a single second.
- Stratus would fit in half the size of a tennis court.
- Stratus is 34 times more powerful than the most powerful supercomputer in existence a decade ago.
The new computing power will give meteorologists better accuracy and precision in both short-term and long-term forecasting.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
There will be a few light scattered showers across northeast Ohio today and Saturday, but the rest of the region will stay dry.
This is a map showing rainfall from Friday through daybreak Monday. As you can see, the active weather will be in the Plains, across the Gulf coast, and the northeast.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
He suffered a serious stroke back in 2005, and was profiled by Harry Smith last year on The Early Show.
Mark filed a lawsuit against the emergency room doctor who treated originally him. A decision was handed down yesterday. For more details, check out the full story from the Associated Press.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Fog will dissipate between 8 and 9 am.
With cooler temps and more breaks in the clouds tonight, there will be more widespread fog Thursday morning.
For current school delays, check out our Just In, Always On page, and you can also sign up for Text It.
September 10th is statistically the peak of hurricane season, which runs June 1 to November 30. Ocean water temps have warmed after a summer of heating, and the upper air winds cooperate a bit more at times.
We have two systems that we are tracking:
1) In the Pacific, tropical storm Linda is located well west of North & Central America. Forecasts take Linda slowly northward as she weakens. She will be no threat to Mexico, the continential USA or Hawaii.
2) In the Atlantic, tropical storm Fred has formed west of Africa. Similar to Linda, his track takes him northward as he weakens.
The National Hurricane Center is also watching an area along coastal North Carolina, but it does not show immediate signs of developing.
With the higher humidity levels and slow-moving areas of rain & storms, locally heavy rainfall has been occurring. Some spots on Labor Day received between 1 & 2 inches of rain, and a few areas may pick up an inch or more today.
The wetter pattern will break down tomorrow and Thursday with only isolated thunderstorms possible.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
Mel had the pup around the station on Friday, and Crumpet is the calmest puppy in the history of the world. Happy birthday Bev, and welcome home Crumpet!
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Hurricane Jimena has diminished (it has moved over colder water, and has dropped from a near category 5 hurricane to a category 2 as of Wednesday morning), but will hang around Baja the next few days. The minimal movement will cause prolonged torrential rainfall.
A new tropical storm has formed in the Atlantic. Erika (pronounced air-ree-kuh) formed Tuesday and is located east of the Caribbean. The track will move it north of Puerto Rico, Haiti, the Dominican Republic and Cuba towards the Bahamas...and possibly towards Florida by early next week. Erika is not well-organized, and doesn't show any big signs of strengthening the next few days.
You can follow the systems with our Hurricane Tracker, as well as the National Hurricane Center.
A major earthquake hit southern Indonesia early today. A 7.3 magnitude quake hit Java, Indonesia, at around 3:55 am EDT (2:55 pm there), with a second quake of 4.9 magnitude at 5:28 am EDT (4:28 pm local time).
A tsunami warning was issued, but cancelled shortly thereafter. As of this writing, 7 people were reported killed in the initial earthquake.
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) listed the depth of the first earthquake at 30 miles into the earth. The USGS listed the magnitude as 7.0, but a local Indonesian geological agency estimates it was a little stronger at 7.3.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Monday, August 31, 2009
Danny is gone, and we are still watching a few areas in the Atlantic. However, a major hurricane is just to the west of Mexico.
Hurricane Jimena is a borderline category five hurricane with winds just under 150 mph (winds over 155 mph are category 5). It is moving toward the Baja California peninsula. It will weaken slightly, but still may be a cat 3 or 4 storm during landfall. The remnants will push north through western Mexico, and will affect the southwest USA with rain by the weekend.
You can track tropical weather with our WTOL Hurricane Tracker.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
1. Clear skies: This allows for good radiative cooling (all the heat from the day escapes due to no cloud cover)
2. Light winds: This limits the mixing of air in the atmosphere allowing the lowest layer to cool the most.
3. High Pressure: This brings dry air. Temperatures cool faster when the air is dry verses a higher moisture content.
All three of these ingredients have come together which will result in temperatures to drop into the low and middle 40s during the end of August.
RECORD LOW: 41° degrees set in 1967 at Toledo Express Airport
Friday, August 28, 2009
The storm system responsible is tracking away from the area, and cooler air will spill into the area over the next 48 hours. A secondary cold front will pass by Saturday afternoon. A slight chance of a shower is possible with the front and some afternoon heating.
Sunday's highs will struggle to break 70° in most areas, and our far northwestern cities may not exceed 65°.
Lows Sunday and Monday nights will dip into the mid and upper 40s away from the lake. These lows will be about 12 to 15 degrees below normal, and will flirt with some record lows.
A gradual warm-up will occur as the upcoming week progresses.
We continue to watch tropical storm Danny. He has been weakening quite a bit, and the forecast track remains similar to the ones issued the past few days. The center of Danny may graze Cape Cod, but most land areas will not see the brunt of the storm at all. Gusty winds and high surf will affect the eastern seaboard.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Previous forecasts included a few hours featuring Danny gaining minimal hurricane status, but it appears as Danny gets a little bit more to the west, the environment will not be conducive for major strengthening.
The forecast track still keeps the majority of Danny offshore. However, heavy surf and gusty winds will hit the eastern seaboard, especially coastal New England. Bill did this the other week.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
The official track from the NHC keeps the center of Danny offshore quite a bit. It will graze coastal New England later this week. High surf and gusty winds will pound the northeast as Danny flirts with category one hurricane status.
Check out the WTOL Hurricane Tracker for the latest information and track. A special section is dedicated to Danny, and this also appears above the 7-day forecast on the main weather page.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) is monitoring two areas of disturbed weather.
The first is across Central America and is mostly over land. The forecast is for little additional strengthening.
The second area is just north of the Caribbean and east of the Bahamas. The NHC has been watching this one very closely, and has sent an aircraft to investigate it. Some strengthening is forecast the next few days. If the storm hits winds of 39 mph or higher, it will be named Danny.
Various computer models take the center of the system close to the Atlantic seaboard, and a few bring it on land near the Carolinas. We will continue to watch it the rest of the week.
Friday, August 21, 2009
Normal high this time of year is 80°, normal low is 60°. None of the forecast temps are near any records.
This weekend will be quite the departure from the last two. Last weekend (Aug 15-16) had highs of 88° on Saturday and 94° on Sunday.
The weekend before that (Aug 8-9) featured a 85° high Saturday and 94° Sunday.
Previous cooler highs:
- 79° - Aug 7
- 69° - July 22
Previous cooler lows:
- 58° - Aug 14
- 57° - Aug 6
- 52° - Aug 3
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Scattered storms that developed east of I-75 have pushed out of the viewing area. This prompted a few scattered warnings for thunderstorms that had the potential of producing hail and damaging winds in excess of 60 mph. A severe thunderstorm watch remains in effect until 10 pm tonight for our eastern counties; however the main threat has passed for strong or severe storms. This watch will likely be allowed to expire early.
Early afternoon update:
Scattered storms are developing in some areas. Some additional storms will fire up through late afternoon and early evening. Storms will be scattered -- so not all areas will be affected. A few of the storms could be strong.
The National Weather Service is evaluating our area for a possible watch.
11 am update:
The first line of showers & thunder has passed through the northern half of our viewing area. Clouds will break for some sun. A few storms are beginning to develop in northeast Indiana up through Hillsdale county. These will continue to develop and track northeastward.
6 am post:
Storm clusters will track into the area today from the west. The time frame of mid/late morning through the afternoon is the best chance for the area to see rain and storms. A cold front will pass through late this evening, so some thunderstorms are possible until then.
As the mugginess continues to increase, this will create an environment for storms to unleash heavy rainfall.
Some of these storms could be severe with strong winds and large hail. Updated watches and warnings, when they occur, will be posted on our weather page.
The Bahamas, Bermuda and the eastern US seaboard will see strong, high waves through the weekend.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
(photo from NOAA)
Hurricane Bill is still way out in the Atlantic, but his future path is being watched closely already. The storm should gain category 3 status and stay that strong for awhile.
We look at a whole host of computer models, and they all trend north of the Bahamas and east of the USA. Bermuda looks like they may see the brunt of Bill over the weekend.
The eastern seaboard is not out of the woods yet, but each computer model run suggests a track away from the US. A strong cold front will pass through our area Thursday into Friday, and that may be enough to push Bill farther into the Atlantic away from the shore -- but that means it will be closer to Bermuda.
Check out our WTOL Hurricane Tracker. Under the big map is a special section for Bill. One of the choices in that section is "model predictions". This will show the range of the computer model solutions.
Monday, August 17, 2009
Some bands of strong thunderstorms rolled through the area during the afternoon and evening. With the high humidity levels, these storms had a lot of water to work with.
A corridor of heavy rain stretched from greater Toledo southwestward into Putnam and Defiance counties. Areas shaded in orange picked up 2 to 3 inches of rain (there were even some isolated higher totals). There was another smaller band of heavier rain in northern Williams county.
Elsewhere, areas shaded in the yellows received between 1 and 2 inches of rain. Areas in green picked up between 1/2 and 1 inch of rain.
If you are interested in either a rain barrel or compost bin contact Katie Swartz. She has both available and they are in the Toledo area.
[caption id="attachment_169" align="alignnone" width="551" caption="New Englander Rain Barrel"][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_170" align="alignnone" width="574" caption="Bio-Orb Composter"][/caption]
Sunday, August 16, 2009
1) Tropical Storm Claudette -- formed early Sunday morning and made landfall around 2 am EDT today in the Florida Panhandle. Claudette will continue to weaken over the next 24 hours.
2) Tropical Depression Ana -- formed late last week in the eastern Atlantic. It has been in a weakened state the last few days. It should remain a weak system as it tracks from the eastern Caribbean into the eastern Gulf of Mexico. Latest forecast models suggest a landfall later this week near Florida.
3) Hurricane Bill -- formed Saturday morning and became a hurricane at 5 am today. Bill will track to the west and northwest, possibly affecting the eastern USA or Bermuda by the weekend or early next week.
You can track tropical systems with the WTOL Hurricane Tracker HERE.
The website for the National Hurricane Center can be found HERE.
The storms were named in the order they formed -- so that is why the storm affecting the southeast is named with a C.
The names for tropical systems are from 6 lists that cycle over the years. When a large storm creates damage (Andrew, Katrina), the name is retired and replaced.
The names alternate male & female during the season, as well as season to season (ie, 2010 season will feature the A storm being male, Alex). There are different sets of names for the Pacific. You can see the list of names HERE.
Tropical storms and hurricanes are called cyclones when they occur west of the international dateline (Indian Ocean and western Pacific).
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
We are still in that part of summer where we really need about an inch of rain each week to keep things green and crops healthy.
Thunderstorms from Tuesday did provide decent rain to some parts of our viewing area, but not all.
Toledo Express Stats:
August precip: 0.70" -0.46" below normal
Total this year: 25.16" +4.59" above normal
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
The National Hurricane Center has designated the system in the eastern Atlantic as Tropical Depression # 2 of the year. It is forecast to strengthen over the next few days. Once the winds reach 39 mph, it will be named Tropical Storm Ana. As of right now, it should not affect any land areas in the next few days.
Monday, August 10, 2009
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Dew point, and how it relates to your comfort
A lot of times on the newscasts, we refer to the dew point. It can be a confusing number, but there are some aspects of it that will be beneficial to you, especially in the summer.
The dew point is the temperature at which the current air will saturate. This number goes up and down depending upon the air mass. But unlike relative humidity, it is a more reliable number.
Relative humidity is the humidity value of the air, relative to the current temperature. You know that 100% relative humidity in the middle of summer feels totally different than 100% humidity in the winter. Both values are accurate in their situation. In the winter, the cold air won’t hold as much moisture….so, 100% humidity then means the cold air is saturated.
But, in summer, the warm/hot air can hold a lot of moisture…so the 100% humidity value for that temperature can be extremely uncomfortable.
Here is a guide to know what dew point means in the summer:
Values in the 50s:
Very comfortable. If the air temperature is pretty warm, say in the upper 80s, but the dew points are in the 50s, you won’t notice any muggy feel in the air at all.
Dew point around 60:
This is when you start to notice the air isn’t as comfortable anymore. It isn’t muggy, but this is the level when most people start to notice a little jump out of the true comfort zone. People with respiratory ailments will start to notice this jump, and may find breathing a little more difficult than normal.
Dew point around 65:
At this point, the air is starting to get pretty humid. With dew points in the mid/upper 60s, our bodies start reacting to it. It takes longer to cool off, since the humid air won’t allow sweat to evaporate off your body easily. Think about it like this: if you hang a wet towel up in a steamy bathroom, or you paint a room when it’s really muggy, it takes a long time for that object to dry out. Also, for people with respiratory problems, higher dew points like these start making breathing more difficult, and create the need for using oxygen.
Dew point around 70:
This is the level when most people start using words like muggy, tropical, sultry, etc.
This is how it feels along the Gulf Coast and areas like Houston in mid-summer. When combined with hot temperatures, dewpoints in the 70s create high heat index values, and contribute to heat exhaustion or heat stroke for those exposed to the heat and humidity.
Dew point around 80:
Not commonly achieved in the US, but dew points of 80 are akin to a rain forest climate. We occasionally see dew points this high in the southern USA during extreme situations in the summer. In our part of the world, some mid/upper 70s dew points do occur at times during the summer, but are more exceptions versus typical.
A shorter and quicker guide:
Below 60 - nice. Around 60 - a little humid. Around 70 - very muggy.
Thursday, August 6, 2009
After only two 90° days this year (94° on June 25, and 93° on June 24), and a very cool July, we should see a significant change this weekend. Ninety-degree weather will return to the area, along with muggy conditions.
We are still running behind last year's levels, and WAY below 2007's hot summer. By this point in 2007, we had achieved a total of 18 days with 90° or hotter. That summer would see 6 more 90° days by the end of the season.
Saturday, August 1, 2009
It was the coldest July since 1965! It was not just here in northwest Ohio, several other locations in the region broke or came close to record cold temperatures.
Cincinnati, Lima, Fort Wayne and South Bend all broke the record for the all time coldest month on record! Dayton had its second coldest and Columbus squeaked in with its fourth coldest July on record.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Some strong thunderstorms Tuesday evening produced heavy rainfall across NW Ohio. Afterwards, there were some rainbows across the Toledo area. Many of our viewers sent in pictures to our SEE, SNAP, SEND web page. You can see all the pics (and some video) at www.pics.wtol.com
You can send in your pictures and video to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
The National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center has released its outlook for August.
It features below normal temps and near normal precipitation.
As we look at some computer models going out a couple of weeks, we do not see any significant change in the recent pattern. We will have some warm days, but occasionally see cooler than normal highs.
The outlook does not imply there will not be any hot weather in August....it just means that when we average everything out at the end of the month, the result will be below normal.
Normal highs during the month of August go from 83° to 78° from the 1st to the 31st, and lows range from 63° to 58°.
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Highs this last week of July will top out in the low/mid 80s. Normal high is 83°, so this is actually what July should be doing.
This month will still be in the top coolest Julys thanks to the majority of the month having below normal temperatures. As of Monday morning, we rank # 2...but the warmer temps will knock that down a bit this week.
One positive aspect of the cooler than normal temps has been a reduction in air conditioning use. This month has produced only one-third the normal level of cooling needed in a typical July.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
As mentioned before, it has been pretty dry lately, and the rain yesterday into today is making up that deficit.
Rainfall yesterday was steadier east of Interstate 75. Rainfall amounts via our StormTrack 11 Doppler show rainfall totals 0.25" or less in many areas west of I-75. Areas towards the Indiana border had less than 0.1" of rainfall.
Locations east of I-75 picked up around 0.50" to 1.00". Some isolated spots received between 1.00" and 1.50".
Additional rainfall will add a bit to the totals today. We are tracking another system for Saturday.
Monday, July 20, 2009
July ends next Friday, and as of now, no major warm-ups are in sight.
Our extended computer models which go out through next week show signs of the current pattern repeating in a similar fashion. Temps look to be near or slightly below normal...so the chance of any 90° weather before August 1 looks slim.
Normal high this time of year is around 84°.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
July so far has had only 1.40" of rain, which is 0.37" below normal.
Our yearly total is 22.88", which is 4.50" above normal. A lot of this surplus was gained earlier in the year, and that surplus was a bit higher a few months ago.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Here are the top 5 coolest Julys on record (since 1871):
- 68.0 -- 1891
- 68.5 -- 1965
- 69.0 -- 1971
- 69.1 -- 1967
- 69.6 -- 1962
As of late yesterday, our monthly average temp so far is 67.7 degrees. That makes it the coolest July ever on record. There are a few more weeks of the month to go, but unless we see a prolonged period of warmer temps, this month will most likely end up somewhere in the top 5.
Ahh….our second birthday in the weather department this week ! (Tara's was on July 14)
Happy Birthday wishes go to Robert Shiels today. He will be off from work this evening, so he can attend YET another Hummel Figurine convention.
If you wish to send Bobby some good birthday wishes, you can email him at email@example.com
An upper-level storm system will move across the Great Lakes this weekend, bringing with it much cooler and unsettled weather.
With this system in the area, skies will go mostly cloudy at times with the chance of a shower. There will be many, many dry hours Friday & Saturday…but keep in mind you might run into a couple of showers.
Saturday’s highs will struggle to break 70 in some spots. If we don’t reach 71 on Saturday, it will be the coolest high temperature since July 2.
A gradual moderation in temps will occur early next week. Normal high for this point of July is around 84 degrees.
Here are some previous days with cool high temps:
73 – July 4
69 – July 2
67 – June 11
Earthquakes & Tsunamis -- originally posted on July 15
Two significant earthquakes hit near the southwest coast of New Zealand. After the initial quake of 7.8 (at 5:22 am EDT), a second earthquake of 5.8 magnitude hit the same area 19 minutes later.
Also of note, a 5.0 magnitude quake occurred in the Pacific south of Alaska between the two NZ quakes.
This is a link of latest activity. Subtract 4 hours from the time to get EDT (it’s in a 24 hour form, so 13 is 1 pm, etc)
Here is a link to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center:
Original tsunami warning for NZ:
Tsunami advisory for Hawaii:
NOAA scientists today announced the arrival of El Niño, a climate phenomenon with a significant influence on global weather, ocean conditions and marine fisheries. El Niño, the periodic warming of central and eastern tropical Pacific waters, occurs on average every two to five years and typically lasts about 12 months.
Sea surface temperatures along the equatorial Eastern Pacific, as of July 1, are at least one degree above average — a sign of El Niño.
NOAA expects this El Niño to continue developing during the next several months, with further strengthening possible. The event is expected to last through winter 2009-10.
This climate phenomenon has minor impacts on our weather during the summer months, but often has more pronounced effects in the winter. Typically, El Nino translates to a Milder & Drier than normal winter across the southern Great Lakes.
It also has impacts on the Atlantic Hurricane season. Typically, the El Nino phenomena results in below normal or suppressed hurricane activity.