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March 2014 - Report and Summary

The month of March 2014 was cooler and drier than normal. The thirty-day outlook had called for near normal temperatures and above normal precipitation. When revised on February 28, it called for below normal temperatures and near normal precipitation. Compared with March 2013, the month was 1.2 deg. Cooler, and 1.02 inch wetter. Year-to-date rainfall was 2.90 inches less in 2014 than in 2013.

March, quite literally, came in like a lion. After a mild opening to the month, a major winter storm struck on the afternoon of the 2nd, leaving 1.2 inches of sleet. Most of this fell in a heavy sleet shower between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. that afternoon.

Schools were closed on the 3rd and 4th, and about 35,000 customers lost electric service. The ice did not melt from vegetation until the afternoon of the 5th. The high temperature on the 3rd was the coldest maximum ever recorded in March (see below). Temperatures continued below normal until the 10th, with a reinforcing cold front again lowering readings on the 6th.

Mild temperatures on the 10th and 11th were replaced by another cool air mass on the 12th. Mild air returned on the 14th and 15th, and then another cold front brought rain on the night of the 15th and very windy conditions on the 16th. Another cold front came through on the morning of the 19th, reversing the warm-up of the previous day. There was some patchy light rain in Gregg and Rusk Counties early that morning. There was also some remnant dust and smoke on the 19th from a West Texas dust storm and Northwest Texas wildland fires which had occurred on the 18th.

Temperatures were seasonably mild on the 20th and 21st, warmed on the 22nd, but cooled again between the 23rd and 26th. Warming on the 27th and 28th preceded a storm system and cold front on the 28th which brought severe weather on the afternoon of the 28th. A peak wing gust of 51 mph was clocked at Pounds Field at 5:34 p.m. on that afternoon, with small hail in the city.

Weak disturbances on the 26th and 27th brought patchy light rain to parts of the region. The 84-degree maximum on the afternoon of the 28th was the first time the thermometer in Tyler had reached 80 since November 17, 2013.

The final weekend in March was mild, fair, and dry, with warming and increased humidities commencing on the 31st. March went out like a lamb.

The reporting period for temperatures and phenomenon on each day is for the twenty-four hours ending at midnight hours GMT--6 p.m. CST and 7 p.m. CDT. The reporting period for precipitation is for the twenty-four hours ending at noon GMT--6 a.m. CST and 7 a.m. CDT. All times are given using the twenty-four hour clock, and are expressed in Greenwich Mean Time.

Observations are from NWS Station 41/9207/4 in Tyler, Texas. The term "normal" refers to averages from the standard climatic period 1971-2000.

March 2014



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