Warm and Wet Conditions Return to Delaware During December 2013

Delaware’s Climate during December 2013 was characterized by warmer than normal temperatures and above normal precipitation values. Although temperatures were above normal across the State, two significant snowfall events reminded residents that winter had arrived.

Delaware’s Climate during December 2013 was characterized by warmer than normal temperatures and above normal precipitation values. Although temperatures were above normal across the State, two significant snowfall events reminded residents that winter had arrived.

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Figure 1. Delaware statewide mean December temperature (°F) 1895-2013.
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Figure 2. Delaware statewide December precipitation (inches) 1895-2013.

December Temperatures

Statewide average temperature in December was 41.8°F according to preliminary data from the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). This was 3.4°F above the 1981-2010 normal of 38.4°F (Figure 1) and was the third December in a row with above normal temperatures.

December Precipitation

Statewide precipitation in December averaged 5.05 inches, 1.41 inches above the 1981-2010 mean of 3.64 inches (Figure 2). Many areas of the state saw substantial snowfall during the month with portions of northern Delaware receiving nearly 12 inches.

Statewide Spatial Averages

Mean monthly temperatures were above normal across the majority of the DEOS (deos.udel.edu) network in December, with the greatest warmth found in southern Kent and Sussex Counties (Figure 3). Maximum temperature anomalies across the State were similar to the pattern of mean monthly temperatures (Figure 4). Average minimum temperatures were above normal at all locations except coastal and southern Sussex County where they were near or just below normal (Figure 5).

Precipitation was above normal throughout Delaware, with higher than normal values generally increasing from north to south (Figure 6).

December 2013 average temperature departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data
Figure 3. December 2013 average temperature departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data.
Delaware December 2013 maximum temperature departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data
Figure 4. December 2013 maximum temperature departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data
Delaware December 2013 minimum temperature departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data
Figure 5. December 2013 minimum temperature departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data
Delaware December 2013 precipitation departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data
Figure 6. December 2013 precipitation departures from the 1981-2010 mean based upon DEOS station data
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