Cold and Snow Continue into March 2014

Much colder than normal temperatures and ample precipitation characterized Delaware’s climate for March, 2014. The combination of cold temperatures and moisture led to heavy March snowfalls, especially for southern Delaware.

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Figure 1. Delaware statewide mean March temperature (°F) 1895-2014.
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Figure 2. Delaware statewide mean March precipitation (inches) 1895-2014.

March Temperatures

Statewide average temperature in March was 39.7°F according to preliminary data from the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). This was 4.3°F below the 1981-2010 normal of 44.0°F (Figure 1). March 2014 was the 27th coldest March since records began in 1895. It was also the second March in a row with temperatures much below normal temperatures.

March Precipitation

Statewide precipitation in March averaged 3.88 inches, very close to the 1981-2010 mean of 4.20 inches (Figure 2). Although every portion of the State received substantial snowfall during the month, the southern portions of Delaware were hardest hit, with over 15 inches of snow falling across eastern portions of Kent and Sussex counties during the month (Figure 3).

Statewide Spatial Averages

March temperatures were well below normal across the entire state and at all DEOS stations (deos.udel.edu) in March, with the largest negative temperature anomalies found where some of the heaviest snow fell in eastern Kent and Sussex counties (Figure 4).

March 2014 snowfall totals based upon DEOS station data.
Figure 3. March 2014 snowfall totals based upon DEOS station data.
March 2014 average temperature departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data
Figure 4. 2013 March 2014 average temperature departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data.
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