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Stormy Weather in the Northwest; Fire Weather Threat Redeveloping in Southern California this Weekend

An active fall storm pattern in the Pacific Northwest is bringing heavy rain and high elevation snow to the region which will persist through this weekend. Strong winds associated with this system will bring a renewed period of critical fire weather to southern California later this weekend into next week. Read More >


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January 2016

  • Tulsa: No daily records were set or tied this month. The record latest occurrence of 24°F (killing freeze) was set on January 1, 2016 when the temperature fell to 23°F. The previous record was December 28 in both 1971 and 1941.
  • Fort Smith: No daily records were set or tied this month.
  • Using the radar-derived estimated observed precipitation from the RFCs, rainfall totals for January 2016 ranged from around 0.25” to near 2”. Most of eastern OK and northwest AR received 0.25”-1” of rain this month. This corresponds to only 10%-50% of the normal January rain across most of the area. A portion of northern Le Flore County received just 5%-10% of the normal January rain.
  • After record rainfall and major flooding at the end of December 2015, all of eastern OK and northwest AR received well below normal rainfall in January 2016. Flooding from December lingered into the first few days of January in the Poteau River, Lower Arkansas River, Lee Creek, and Deep Fork River basins.
  • According to the Drought Monitor from January 26, 2016, there were not drought or abnormally dry conditions present in eastern OK and northwest AR.
  • According to the Oklahoma Climatological Survey, January 2016 was the 13th driest for northeast Oklahoma, the 19th driest for east central Oklahoma, and the 21st driest for southeast Oklahoma. Records go back to 1921.  For the 90 day period Nov. 3, 2015-Jan. 31, 2016,  northeast Oklahoma ranked as the 1st (record) wettest, east central Oklahoma was the 1st (record) wettest, and southeast Oklahoma was the 1st (record) wettest period.
  • The Climate Prediction Center (CPC) outlook for February 2016 (issued January 31, 2016) indicates equal chances for above, near, and below normal temperatures across all of eastern OK and northwest AR. This outlook also calls for a slightly enhanced chance for above median precipitation across eastern OK and equal chances for above, near, and below median precipitation across northwest AR. This outlook is based on both short- and extended-range weather forecasts. It appears there will be a lack of “typical” El Niño response for the first half of the month.
  • For the 3-month period February-March-April 2016, CPC is forecasting an equal chance for above, near, and below normal temperatures and precipitation across all of eastern OK and northwest AR (outlook issued January 21, 2016). This outlook is based primarily on both statistical and dynamical forecast tools, with a heavy reliance on typical impacts resulting from an El Niño response.
  • According to CPC, strong El Niño conditions persist, and El Niño has likely peaked. This event is likely to transition to neutral conditions during the late spring or early summer 2016. An El Niño Advisory is in effect.