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May 2002 - Report and Summary

The month of May 2002 saw near normal temperatures and above normal precipitation. In comparison with May 2001, last month was 0.6 deg. cooler, and 1.14 inches wetter. Precipitation through May 31, 2002 was 18.15 inches, which was 10.86 inches less than through the same period in 2001. Twelve-month precipitation through May 31 is 48.04 inches, which is 106.1 percent of normal. The thirty-day forecast for May 2002 had called for above normal temperatures and near normal precipitation.

The week April 28-May 4 saw temperatures seven degrees warmer than normal, and rainfall about one-third normal. Upper air high pressure, centered over the Gulf of Mexico, controlled the region's weather through the 2nd. This resulted in well-above normal temperatures. On the 2nd, a cold front moved through the region, which lowered temperatures through the end of the week. The week's only rain occurred on the 3rd as an upper air disturbance crossed. The week's average temperature was 76.8 deg., which was 5.2 deg. warmer than the previous week.

The week May 5-11 saw temperatures 8.5 deg. warmer than normal, and rainfall about 200 percent of normal. For most of the week, Tropical Maritime air was over the region, with an upper air high pressure ridge adding to the warmth. A cold front crossed on the 9th, bringing localized very heavy rainfall early on the morning of the 10th. The front retreated northward as a warm front on the afternoon of the 10th, and thus brought only brief cooling. Conditions were breezy to windy on the 6th, 7th, 8th, and 11th. The week's average temperature was 80.2, which was 3.4 deg. warmer than the previous week.

The week May 12-18 saw temperatures three degrees cooler than normal, and rainfall near normal. The week began warm, but two strong cold fronts crossed--one on the 13th and another on the 17th. Both brought rain. Temperatures warmed again at mid-week after the high pressure ridge behind the front moved eastward. The week's average temperature was 70.0 deg., which was 10.2 degrees cooler than the previous week.

The week May 19-25 was even cooler, averaging six degrees below normal. There was no rainfall. The strong cold front of the 17th was followed by a Polar Continental air mass. This established a record low minimum temperature on the morning of the 19th, and held readings below normal through the 24th. Tropical Maritime air began returning on the 22nd, but extensive cloud cover still held down daytime temperatures. There were a few scattered showers over the northern counties on the 25th as a cold front went stationary along Red River. The week's average temperature was 68.9 deg., which was 1.1 deg. cooler than the previous week.

The last six days of the month saw a closed upper air low slowly cross the region. This brought significant rains to the area between the night of the 27th and the afternoon of the 30th.

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.

May 2002



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