Thursday, May 3, 2012

April 2012 Climate Data and MWN Forecast Accuracy

Following the 7th warmest meteorological winter (December-February) on record and the warmest March on record, April continued the well-above-normal temperature trend, though it was not warm enough to reach the "Top 10" Aprils temperature-wise. However, a "bottom 10" was recorded as rainfall was hard to come by in one of the typically wetter months of the year.  With just over an inch of rain at Memphis International for the month, this month became the second driest in recorded history.  The lack of rain is a far cry from the past two years when record flooding was found regionally heading into early May!

Memphis International Airport, Memphis, TN
The average temperature for the month of April was 66.0 degrees, 3.1 degrees above normal. The average high temperature was 76.5 degrees and the average low was 55.5. The coolest temperature of the month was 43 degrees on the 12th and 22nd, while the highest temperature was 86 degrees reached on the 28th and 30th.  There were 11 days in which the high reached 80 degrees or higher and 8 days in which the average daily temperature was 10 degrees or more above normal.

Precipitation for the month totaled 1.04", which was 4.46" below average.  There were only 6 calendar days with measurable rainfall, none of which had more than 0.35". The maximum 24-hour amount was 0.40" on the 15-16th. The peak wind gust was 41 mph (from the south) on the 15th with an average wind speed for the month of 8.5 mph. Click here for a daily statistical recap for Memphis International Airport.

Cirrus Weather Solutions, Bartlett, TN
The average April temperature at Cirrus Weather Solutions in north Bartlett was 65.4 degrees with a maximum of 88.8 degrees on the 1st and a minimum of 34.9 degrees on the 12th.  April precipitation totaled 1.44" in the automated gauge. A co-located manual gauge used for the CoCoRaHS program measured 1.47".  The peak wind gust was 26 mph on the 15th. Average relative humidity was 63%. Click here for a daily recap on

MWN Forecast Accuracy
For the month of April, the average temperature error in all MWN temperature forecasts was 2.11 degrees. Over 57% of the MWN temperature forecasts for the month were within 2 degrees of the actual temperature. MWN's forecasts extend out five periods (or 2.5 days). For dewpoint accuracy, the MWN forecast averaged 2.49 degrees of error and fell within 2 degrees of the actual dewpoint nearly 62% of the time. Historical accuracy statistics can be found here.

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