Prolonged cold air outbreak ends

  • Records: Per the table below, the duration of the cold (sub-freezing) air is one of the longest on record at Paducah. As far as the severity of the outbreak, average daily temperatures for much of the outbreak were around 20 degrees below normal. No daily records were broken at Paducah or Evansville. Record lows at both sites were below zero. Record cold highs were mostly in the single digits above zero. 
  • History: Looking back, the coldest temperatures of the first arctic outbreak of the decade occurred Sunday morning, Jan. 10. The coldest lows included minus 8 at Mount Vernon (unofficial), minus 5 at Carbondale, and minus 2 at Cape Girardeau. Temperatures fell to between zero and 6 above at Poplar Bluff, Paducah, and Evansville.

This cold air outbreak began right around New Years Eve, when a strong cold front swept through the region. The outbreak is notable for its duration. The cold air outbreak has ended at Paducah as temperatures rose to 33 degrees during the morning of January 11. The cold streak ended at Evansville on January 12. . The following is a listing of the longest streaks at Paducah and Evansville:

Paducah (since 1937)

Rank Days Year
1. 13 1978
2. 11 2001
2. (tie) 11 1940
3. 10 1989
3. (tie) 10 2010
4. 7 1979
4. (tie) 7 1978
4. (tie) 7 1973

Evansville (since 1897)

Rank Days Year
1. 18 2001
2. 17 1918
3. 16 1978
4. 14 1978
5. 13 1940
6. 11 1989
6. (tie) 11 1968
6. (tie) 11 1936
6. (tie) 11 1899
6. (tie) 11 2010

  • Cause: Many of us have heard of El Nino. While El Nino was expected to have a major influence on this winter's weather, the dominant feature so far this winter has been one of the strongest Arctic Oscillations on record. For more information on the Arctic Oscillation, visit the Arctic Oscillation web page from the National Snow and Ice Data Center and the Climate Prediction Center's Arctic Oscillation page    




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