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Monday, February 13, 2012
Homeland Security Threat Level: YELLOW (ELEVATED)
Significant National Weather:
High pressure is in place today bringing plenty of sunshine and moderate temperatures. The high will move off the mid-Atlantic coast today bringing a return to above normal temperatures on Tuesday. Lake effect snow along the Great Lakes will end today as warmer air builds in from the mid-Atlantic region. A fast moving weak disturbance approaches for the mid-week period bringing with it a chance of light mixed precipitation.
Another blast of cold arctic air is expected again tonight into northern Florida with temperatures in the upper 20s and lower 30s and windchills in the upper teens. The high pressure over the Mississippi Valley will move off to the east today as a storm system over the Rockies approaches the middle Tennessee Valley, bringing a wintry mix of precipitation across portions of the Deep South from Louisiana across the far northern portion of Mississippi into northern Alabama and Georgia.
The Northern Plains can expect quiet weather today with moderating temperatures. A wintry mix of precipitation will fall across a large portion of the Central and Southern Plains into the Middle Mississippi Valley. Accumulating snow and sleet is forecast over northeast Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas before ending Monday evening. Snow will spread across eastern Kansas and western Missouri this morning before changing to freezing drizzle this afternoon.
A very weak storm system will spread light rain over western Washington today before ending late this afternoon. A series of cold winter storms to impact southern California this week bringing periods of rain and mountain snow, gusty winds and cold weather. Light to moderate rain and mountain snow is expected this afternoon and evening. The San Bernardino Mountains could see 4 to 9 inches of snow. Snow will develop over the Sierras and southern Great Basin. Rain and snow will become more widespread on Tuesday as the storm moves into southern Nevada and far northwest Arizona. Temperatures will drop to well below normal by Tuesday.
January 2012 the Fourth Warmest for the Contiguous United States:
U.S. Climate Highlights‚January 2012
Unusual warmer-than-average temperatures continued to dominate the contiguous United States this past month, making January 2012 the fourth warmest on record, and the warmest since 2006. The average contiguous U.S. temperature in January was 36.3¬į F, which is 5.5¬į F above the 1901‚2000 long-term average.¬* Nine states ‚ Arizona, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Wyoming ‚ had January temperatures ranking among their ten warmest. Florida and Washington were the only states with temperatures near average, and no state was cooler than average. In contrast to the contiguous United States being much warmer than usual, several towns across Alaska had their coldest average January temperatures on record, ranging from -16.6¬į F in Nome, down to -35.6¬į F in Bettles, AK.
Precipitation totals were mixed across the United States during January. The Southern Plains and the Great Lakes were wetter than average for the month, with Texas having above-average precipitation for the second month in a row. Texas had not experienced two consecutive months with above-average precipitation since January‚February 2010. Meanwhile, below-average precipitation was observed for the Central Plains, where Kansas had its third driest January, and Nebraska its eighth. The Southeast was also drier than average, where Florida had its eighth driest January on record. Many locations along Florida‚s Atlantic coast, which usually averages over 2.5 inches of precipitation during January, had little to no precipitation during the month.
Additionally, cities across the Northern Plains, Midwest, and Northeast had below-average snow fall during the month ‚ a result of warmer and drier than average conditions. Despite a large winter storm which impacted the western U.S. during January, much of the region was drier than average. California had its fourth driest December-January period, and Montana had its sixth. However, wetter-than-average conditions were observed in a string of states from New Mexico to New York, with Texas having its eleventh wettest two-month period.
No space weather storms have occurred in the past 24 hours and none are predicted for the next 24 hours.
2012 National Seasonal Assessment Workshop:
Wildland fire, weather, and climate representatives who met virtually from January 17-19, 2012, for the tenth annual National Seasonal Assessment Workshop for the Eastern & Southern United States, reported that the first half of 2012 should see above normal significant fire potential across Florida and coastal portions of the southeastern states, central and western Texas and Oklahoma, and much of New Mexico and southeast Arizona.
The main objectives of the workshop was to improve information available to fire management decision makers; improve communication & cooperation between fire professionals & climate scientists; improve interagency & inter-government information flow; foster the exchange of ideas & techniques for assessing fire potential; and apply climate forecasts & products to meet fire management needs. There were two fire potential forecasts produced for the Eastern, Southern and Southwest Geographic Areas; one for February through March and another for April through June.
Drought stricken portions of the upper Midwest will also see above normal significant fire potential. All above normal areas are expected to expand during the April through June period. An area of above normal significant fire potential in eastern Texas is expected to develop during the April through June period. Below normal significant fire potential is expected across a large portion of the east-central U.S. for the entire outlook period, and elsewhere the significant fire potential is expected to be normal.
Tropical Weather Outlook
No new activity (FEMA HQ)
On February 12, 2012 at 11:47 p.m. EST, a magnitude 4.3 earthquake occurred approximately 3 miles east of the Geysers, CA and 65 miles northwest of San Francisco, CA at a depth of 0.2 miles. This earthquake occurred in an active seismic area near the Collayomi & Maacuma Fault Zones and was the largest of over 100 minor quakes that have occurred over the past seven days in the same area. There were no reports of shaking, damage, or injury and the Alaska Tsunami Warning Center issued an information statement stating that there was no tsunami threat.
Friday, February 10, 2012 (For period 3–10 February, 2012):
National Preparedness Level: 1
Initial Attack Activity: Light (281 new fires)
New Large Fires: 0
Large Fires Contained: 1
Uncontained Large Fires: 0
Type 1 IMT Committed: 0
Type 2 IMT Committed: 0
State Affected: OK
Disaster Declaration Activity
No new activity (FEMA HQ)