The month of October 1998 was warmer and wetter than normal. Three strong migratory storms crossed the region during the month--one early and the other at mid-month. A fourth was approaching at month's end. October 1998 was 1.6 degrees warmer and 3.21 inches wetter than October 1997. Year-to-date rainfall through 31 October 1998 was 4.01 inches less than that through 31 October 1997. Rainfall over the past twelve months is 48.60 inches--106 percent of normal rainfall. The thirty-day outlook had called for near normal temperatures and below normal rainfall.
The first week in October saw temperatures four degrees above normal and rainfall 700 percent of normal. Tropical Maritime air dominated the area through the 5th when a strong Polar Maritime air mass moved into the region. Two powerful storms crossed--one of the night of the 2nd-3rd, and the second on the night of the 5th-6th. Both produced very heavy rainfall amounts over the northern one-half of the region, along with scattered reports of severe weather. There was minor urban flooding in Tyler on the morning of the 6th, and the two storms combined to send watercourses in the Trinity and Sabine Basins out of their banks.
The second week in October saw temperatures near normal and no rainfall. A Polar Maritime air mass built in behind the storm of late in the previous week. This held down temperatures. The presence of upper atmospheric high pressure precluded rainfall.
The third week in October saw temperatures two degrees above normal and rainfall 300 percent of normal. A protracted period of wet weather developed as a result of a slow-moving upper air storm, and rainfall aided by high-level moisture from Eastern Pacific Tropical Storm Madeline brought measurable precipitation most days of the week. The presence of clouds and rain held temperatures within a narrow diurnal range.
The final ten days of the month saw temperatures five degrees above normal and rainfall about 10 percent of normal. An exiting storm brought the week's only rainfall on the 22nd. It was followed by a Polar Maritime air mass, which lowered temperatures to the coolest of the month through the 25th. On the 26th, Tropical Maritime air returned, dominating the area's weather through the 31st. This sent temperatures-- especially nighttime lows--to much above normal levels. A record high minimum temperature occurred on the 29th.
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.
MX MN OBS PCPN REMARKS
October 1998, RECORDS AND SUMMARY: