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Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week begins

Sunday, March 12th, 2017 9:30am MDT
Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness

Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week, March 15 – 21, 2015.

Floods and wildfires are arguably the two most common disasters Coloradans face with numerous such events occurring each year.  To better prepare residents for the danger of these disasters, this week is Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week.

Each day this week the National Weather Service will be posting public information statements covering a number of different topics about floods and wildfires.  These important messages should be required reading for all Coloradans so they know what to do to prepare for these events and handle them when they occur.

ThorntonWeather.com will be posting each of these messages as a service to our readers.  The first of these messages is below.  Check back each day this week for further topics.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BOULDER CO
600 AM MDT SUN MARCH 12 2017

Flood and wildfire season is approaching…know your risks…make your plans…improve your outcome…

The National Weather Service wants everyone in the United States to be part of a WeatherReady nation. Colorado has more than its fair share of floods…flash floods…and wildfires. You should be weather alert and weather ready…knowing how to stay safe when floods and wildfires affect your area.

Governor Hickenlooper has proclaimed this week…March 12th through 18th as Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week. Now is the time to learn about flood and wildfire risks in Colorado…and to develop your plans to improve you outcome.

Floodprone areas have been identified in over 250 cities and towns and in all 64 counties in Colorado. Over 250 thousand people live in floodplains in Colorado. There are estimated to be 65 thousand homes and 15 thousand commercial…industrial…and business structures in identified floodplains. There are likely many more structures located within unmapped flood hazard areas. The value of the property…structures…and contents located in the identified floodplains is estimated to be around 15 billion dollars.

Floods and flash floods have killed over 400 people in Colorado since the turn of the 20th century. The historic weather pattern of September 2013 reminds us all that floods are a major concern across the Centennial state. Floods have caused billions of dollars of damage in Colorado.

On average 2500 wildfires occur across Colorado each year. Since 2012…8 people have been killed when wildfires occurred in the wildland-urban interface.

The National Weather Service forecast offices which serve Colorado will issue a series of public information statements during this Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week…covering the following topics…

Sunday…Introduction to the week
Monday…Flood watches and warnings
Tuesday…River floods
Wednesday…Flash floods
Thursday…Fire forecasts…watches…and warnings
Friday…Wildfire safety and mitigation
Saturday…Review of the week

More information on floods and wildfires is available at your local National
Weather Service web sites…

http://www.weather.gov/denver NWS Dnver/Boulder web site
http://www.weather.gov/pueblo NWS Pueblo web site
http://www.weather.gov/goodland NWS Goodland web site
http://www.weather.gov/gjt NWS Grand Junction web site

Tom Magnuson
Warning Coordination Meteorologist
National Weather Service Pueblo

Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week

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March 12 to March 18: This week in Denver weather history

Sunday, March 12th, 2017 6:18am MDT
This Week In Denver Weather History

This week in Denver weather history: March 12 to March 18

Snow is one thing we have not seen a lot of in recent weeks but we still have time to gain ground. March is our snowiest month and our look back at this week in Denver weather history provides evidence of this. It was this week in 2003 that the Denver was struck by a massive snowstorm – the costliest in Denver history. Also, six years ago, we saw significant snowfall this same week. Below is a complete look at those and other events.

From the National Weather Service:

9-19

In 1906…an extended cold and blustery period occurred with light snow totaling 14.4 inches over 11 consecutive days. The greatest amount of snow on a single day was 4.0 inches on the 15th. Only a trace of snow fell on the 12th and 17th. High temperatures were below freezing for the entire period. The coldest were 14 degrees on the 16th and 18 degrees on the 17th. Both readings were record low maximums for the dates. Low temperatures were mostly in the single digits. The coldest were 2 degrees below zero on the 16th and 5 degrees below zero on the 19th. Northeast winds were sustained to 22 mph on the 9th. North winds were sustained to 36 mph on the 10th…32 mph on the 13th…and 22 mph on the 15th.

10-12

In 1924…snowfall was heavy and totaled 9.9 inches over downtown Denver. North winds were sustained to 18 mph on the 11th.

In 2001…heavy snow fell over northeast Colorado and metro Denver when a combination of upslope winds and convective snow bands formed over the area. Storm totals included: 11 inches at the Eldora Ski Resort; 10 inches at Genesee; 8 inches at Elizabeth…atop Lookout Mountain…near Sedalia… And at Strasburg; 7 inches near Castle Rock and Evergreen; and 6 inches in Aurora…atop Crow Hill…and in Parker. Elsewhere across metro Denver…snowfall ranged from 2 to 5 inches with 3.9 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North winds gusted to 28 mph at Denver International Airport on the 10th.

11-12

In 1929…heavy snowfall totaled 9.3 inches in downtown Denver. Northwest winds were sustained to 31 mph with gusts to 34 mph on the 11th.

In 1947…heavy snowfall totaled 7.0 inches in downtown Denver. North winds were sustained to 15 mph on the 11th.

In 1963…snowfall totaled 5.8 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north-northwest winds gusted to 25 mph on the 11th.

In 1993…a strong storm dumped heavy snow in the mountains and 4 to 8 inches of snow over metro Denver. Snowfall totaled 3.6 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 35 mph.

12

In 1893…northwest winds were sustained to 44 mph.

In 1952…northwest winds sustained at 40 mph with gusts to 60 mph were recorded at Stapleton Airport where 3.2 inches of snow also fell.

In 1954…strong winds raked metro Denver all day producing areas of blowing dust…snow…and blowing snow. At Stapleton Airport…north-northeast winds at sustained speeds of 40 to 45 mph with gusts as high as 60 mph were recorded. Snowfall totaled only 0.4 inches.

In 1982…a windstorm hit the foothills from Boulder north. The highest recorded wind gust of 90 mph occurred in Boulder. Wind gusts to 47 mph were recorded at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1985…only 1.0 inch of snow fell in Denver…but strong winds produced near-blizzard conditions and caused the closure of I-70 from Aurora to Limon for an hour in the evening. North winds gusted to 38 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1999…heavy snow fell in and near the Front Range foothills. Snowfall totals included: 8.5 inches at Genesee…6 inches about 8 miles northwest of Evergreen… 4.5 inches in Boulder…4 inches in Littleton…and only 2.2 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport.

 

12-13

In 2005…a winter storm brought heavy snow to the eastern foothills and western metro Denver overnight. Storm total snowfall included: 15 inches in Jamestown…13 inches near Blackhawk…11 inches in the foothills southwest of Boulder and near Nederland…10.5 inches at Gross Reservoir…9.5 inches at Eldorado Springs…9 inches at Roxborough Park… 8.5 inches near Longmont…8 inches in Boulder…7.5 inches at Centennial…7 inches in Louisville…3.3 inches at Denver Stapleton. At Denver International Airport…west winds gusted to 46 mph on the 12th before the passage of the cold front and north winds gusted 31 mph on the 13th.

12-16

In 1880…a protracted cold spell resulted in 8 temperature records being set. Record low temperatures for the date were set when the temperature dipped to 10 degrees below zero on the 13th and 14th…8 degrees below zero on the 12th and 15th…and 4 degrees below zero on the 16th. Daily record low maximum temperatures were set with 11 degrees on the 12th…12 degrees on the 13th…and 19 degrees on the 15th.

13

In 1973…northwest winds gusted to 51 mph at Stapleton International Airport. The strong winds were accompanied by virga and a very light snow shower.

In 1990…4 to 9 inches of snow fell across metro Denver with 8 to 16 inches in the foothills. Morrison reported 9 inches; Evergreen…11 inches; and Aspen Springs…14 inches from the storm. Blowing snow and reduced visibilities caused 2-hour delays at Stapleton International Airport where only 5.1 inches of snow fell and north winds gusted to 21 mph.

13-14

In 1996…a storm system moving across northern Colorado dumped heavy snow in the mountains and foothills and across metro Denver where snowfall ranged from 5 to 10 inches. A foot of new snow was measured at Nederland with 11 inches at Conifer. Snowfall totaled 8.0 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. Northeast winds gusted to 30 mph at Denver International Airport on the 13th.

13-15

In 1906…snowfall totaled 8.0 inches over downtown Denver.

» Click here to read the rest of March 12 to March 18: This week in Denver weather history

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Thornton’s weekend to bring cooler temps, unsettled conditions

Friday, March 10th, 2017 5:06am MDT

A couple of weak systems are going to bring about a little bit of a change in our weather this weekend. Friday will be our warmest day and then we see cooler temps and a slight chance for a sprinkle of rain Saturday followed by a return of the wind Sunday.

For today we expect some high cloud cover leading to partly sunny skies. Temperatures will be warming to a high in the mid-60s. Thankfully the wind takes a break today. Tonight overnight lows will be around 40 degrees.

The pre-dawn hours into tomorrow morning bring a chance to see a light sprinkle of rain but even if it materializes, it isn’t expected to amount to much. By mid-morning tomorrow the clouds should start to break leading to mostly sunny skies for the balance of the day. Highs tomorrow will be in the mid-50s.

Saturday night into Sunday morning temperatures will drop to near freezing.

Sunday brings partly clear skies and a bit of a rebound of temperatures with highs in the low to mid-60s. Once again, winds are going to blow much of the day.

Have a great weekend!

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Another mild, dry day with gusty winds in store for Thornton

Thursday, March 9th, 2017 5:22am MDT

Our weather forecast for today looks to be a repeat of the conditions we saw yesterday. Mild temperatures and lots of sun will be the good part but gusty winds will again lead to increased fire danger.

We start out with mostly clear skies and you can expect mostly sunny skies throughout the daytime hours. Temperatures will be warming quickly this morning and on their way toward a high near the 70 degree mark.

Like yesterday, winds will intrude on the mild weather, peaking around mid-day with gusts to 30mph being possible. The wind, temperatures and dry conditions have prompted a Red Flag Warning to be issued and in effect from 11:00am to 6:00pm. Fire danger is very high so please be careful. Tonight, the winds ease and the clouds increase with an overnight low of 37 degrees or so on tap.

Live temperatures and wind speeds here.

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Daylight Saving Time set to bring more evening light, signal the change of seasons

Wednesday, March 8th, 2017 5:38pm MDT
The United States returns to Daylight Saving Time at 2:00am Sunday, March 12, 2017.

The United States returns to Daylight Saving Time at 2:00am Sunday, March 12, 2017.

The biannual ritual of changing our clocks to adjust for Daylight Saving Time occurs this Saturday night providing yet another signal of the changing of seasons.  The United States will ‘spring forward’ one hour at 2:00am Sunday morning as we begin Daylight Savings Time.

The ritual of changing our clocks twice a year can be met with some resistance as some people struggle to adjust their body’s internal clock.  The start of Daylight Saving Time can be particularly problematic given the one hour less sleep people receive on the night of the change.

However, longer days as we head into the milder months are a very real benefit and for many worth the inconvenience of a lost hour of sleep.  The time change definitely has big effects on how much daylight we enjoy during our normal waking hours.

On Saturday, prior to the change, sunset will occur at 6:03pm but on Sunday the sun won’t disappear over the horizon until 7:04pm.  This affords folks more time in the evening to get started on those spring-time chores and allows us to get outside and enjoy the warming weather.

The March Equinox is also on the horizon.  Spring officially begins at 4:29am on Monday, March 20.

This year Daylight Savings Time will come to an end on November 5.

Some of the recent history of Daylight Savings Time (from Wikipedia):

Daylight saving time in the United States was first observed in 1918. Most areas of the United States currently observe daylight saving time, with the exceptions being the states of Arizona and Hawaii along with the territories of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands.

From 1987 to 2006, daylight saving time in the United States began on the first Sunday of April and ended on the last Sunday of October. The time was adjusted at 2:00 AM (0200) local time (as it still is done now).

Since 2007, daylight saving time starts on the second Sunday of March and ends on the first Sunday of November, with all time changes taking place at 2:00 AM (0200) local time. In 2011, daylight saving time began on March 13 and will end on November 6.

Daylight Savings Time Schedule

Year DST Begins 2 a.m.
(Second Sunday in March)
DST Ends 2 a.m.
(First Sunday in November)
2017 12 March 2017 5 November 2017
2018 11 March 2018 4 November 2018
2019 10 March 2019 3 November 2019
2020 8 March 2020 1 November 2020
2021 14 March 2021 7 November 2021
2022 13 March 2022 6 November 2022
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Thornton’s Wednesday brings very mild temps, some breezy winds

Wednesday, March 8th, 2017 5:08am MDT

Mild and dry will be the primary weather words for our day today. Winds will still be a bit breezy but near as bad as they have been so far this week.

We start out the day with mostly clear skies and similar conditions above can be expected throughout the day. Temperatures are starting out chilly but then will steadily rise toward a high in the mid to upper 60s, well above the 52-degree average for the date.

As for the winds, we will be calm initially then see things start becoming breezy by mid-morning. Gusts to 25mph will be possible during the middle part of the day before settling down by late afternoon into the evening.

Have a great day!

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New Weather Satellite Sends First Lightning Images

Tuesday, March 7th, 2017 5:47am MDT

Since its launch in November and going online a few weeks later, the GOES-16 weather satellite has already sent back a trove of invaluable data to its operator, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). And the country’s most advanced weather satellite began Monday transmitting to Earth images and data related to lightning over the Western… » Click here to read the rest of New Weather Satellite Sends First Lightning Images

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Tuesday to offer up seasonal temps but another dose of wind

Tuesday, March 7th, 2017 5:34am MDT

On the plus side, temperatures today won’t be near as chilly as they were yesterday. On the down side, the wind is going to continue and fire danger will remain high.

Clear skies start things out today and overall mostly sunny skies can be expected throughout the day. Temperatures early are below freezing but will warm to a high within a couple of degrees of the average for the date of 52 degrees.

Winds will be breezy throughout the daytime hours, increasing in speed this morning and peaking around noon before starting to taper off by mid-afternoon. A Red Flag Warning will be in effect from 11:00am to 5:00pm. The wind coupled with low humidity and dry fuels will ensure high fire danger so please exercise caution.

Overnight, winds should be relatively calm as we dip to lows around 30 degrees.

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NOAA’s satellites are on the chopping block. Here’s why we need them.

Monday, March 6th, 2017 7:45pm MDT

Our eyes in the sky are facing budget cuts On Friday, The Washington Post reportedly obtained a memo from within the Trump administration about proposed funding for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The memo outlined steep cuts to several divisions, including the elimination of the $73 million Sea Grant research program, cuts to climate research… » Click here to read the rest of NOAA’s satellites are on the chopping block. Here’s why we need them.

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Withdraw From Paris Agreement, Lose Economic Opportunities, Europe Tells US

Monday, March 6th, 2017 8:36am MDT

European leaders are pursuing a new tack in their bid to dissuade the Trump administration from pulling out of the landmark Paris Agreement on climate change. Withdraw and miss out on economic and commercial opportunities in clean growth, the Europeans are warning Washington policy makers. In back channel discussions, the Europeans are emphasizing a lower carbon… » Click here to read the rest of Withdraw From Paris Agreement, Lose Economic Opportunities, Europe Tells US

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