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Thornton to enjoy a pleasant late-winter day Wednesday

Wednesday, March 7th, 2018 4:13am MDT

Mother Nature finally gives us a reprieve from the wind today. We also will enjoy lots of sun, calm conditions and temperatures a bit above normal.

The day starts with sunny skies and you can expect more of the same throughout the day. Winds will be light and out of the southwest early, shifting to come from the east later. Temperatures will top out in the mid-50s today, a few degrees above the average high for the date of 52 degrees.

Tonight, skies remain clear with lows dipping to the mid-20s.

Even warmer mercury readings await us tomorrow and Friday, albeit with more clouds. Get more details and a preview of the weekend weather here.

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Flash Flooding – Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week

Wednesday, March 7th, 2018 3:04am MDT

Floods and Flash FloodsFloods 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.  Please check back daily for a new topic.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PUEBLO CO
600 AM MDT WED MARCH 7 2018

Today’s topic during this Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness week is flash floods.

Flash floods are no strangers to Colorado. Since the year 1900, nearly 300 people have been killed in flash floods across the Centennial state.

In terms of lives lost, the worst flash flood occurred on July 31, 1976 in the Big Thompson Canyon between Estes Park and Loveland. A nearly stationary storm produced around 12 inches of rain in 4 hours, claiming 144 lives.

Three other notable flash floods in Colorado were:

In 1904, just north of Pueblo, a bridge failed and around 100 people drowned when a passenger train plunged into Fountain Creek.

The 1997 Fort Collins episode drowned 5 people and caused 200 million dollars of property damage.

In 2013, 9 people drowned during the historic September rain episode, which was a combination of flash floods and river floods. These floods were much more extensive than the Big Thompson Canyon flood of 1976, but because of timely and accurate warnings, many people stayed out of harms way and lives were saved.

A flash flood is defined as a rapid rise in water levels, generally occurring in less than 6 hours, along large creeks, normally dry washes, arroyos, or over normally dry land areas, and can occur with little advanced notice.

Flash floods frequently result from high rainfall rates, and infrequently result from dam failures, levee failures, or sudden breaks in river ice jams. Flash floods are very destructive, due to the force of the moving water, and the accompanying debris. This tremendous force can easily damage or destroy roadways, bridges, and buildings.

In recent years, Colorado has seen major flooding and damage when heavy rains have occurred on wildfire burn scar areas. If you are in or near a burn scar area, you need to plan ahead. Be aware of general flash flood plans and procedures that have been developed and implemented by your local emergency management officials. You should know your flash flood risks, and make your plans to save your life and those around you.

The National Weather Service forecast offices will discuss flash flood potential in daily hazardous weather outlooks, and in graphical weather stories on National Weather Service forecast office web sites.

During days when flash flooding is possible a Flash Flood Watch will be issued.

During days when flash flooding is likely or occurring, a Flash Flood Warning will be issued.

When a Flash Flood Warning is issued for your area, you need to act quickly if you are in a drainage area or in other low spots. Know your escape routes to higher ground and act as quickly as possible. It may be just a short walk or climb to that higher ground.

Many flash flood deaths occur in vehicles. Do not drive through a flooded roadway. The water may be much deeper than you think, because the roadway may be damaged or washed away. One to two feet of water will carry away most vehicles. Instead turn around, do not drown.

For more information on flood safety go to…

http://www.floodsafety.noaa.gov

Tom Magnuson
Warning Coordination Meteorlogist
National Weather Service Pueblo

Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week

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Long Time Frame Flooding – Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week

Tuesday, March 6th, 2018 5:10am MDT

Floods and Flash FloodsFloods 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.  Please check back daily for a new topic.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PUEBLO CO
600 AM MDT TUESDAY MARCH 6 2018

Today’s topic during Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week is flooding which develops in the time frame of longer than 6 hours to several days.

Long duration floods in Colorado can result from snow melt…a combination of snow melt and heavy rain…or just heavy rain.

There have been some notable floods across the Centennial State…

In early June of 1921…a flood along the Arkansas River devastated the city of Pueblo. Estimates of drownings ranged from over 100 to over 300.

Around Memorial Day…1935…catastrophic flooding occurred on the Palmer Divide and the Colorado Springs area…causing millions of dollars of damage…and killing at least 18 people.

The mid-June 1965 flood was widespread across eastern Colorado…taking several lives…and causing over 500 million dollars of damage.

During late April and early May of 1999…after up to 14 inches of rain fell…a major flood occurred across southeast Colorado from Colorado Springs to La Junta.

In 2013, the historic rains and floods in September caused over 3 billion dollars of damage, and took 9 lives.

Just this last year during May, multiple days of heavy rain and snow caused flooding across many areas of eastern Colorado.

Floods in Colorado can result from rapid snow melt, ice jams, a combination of snow melt and heavy rain, or just heavy rain.

National Weather Service forecast offices in Colorado closely collaborate with regional river forecast centers that monitor the Colorado River…South Platte River…Arkansas River…and Rio Grande to come to a consensus on the likelihood of flooding along rivers and large creeks.

The National Weather Service will discuss flood potential in hydrologic outlooks…daily hazardous weather outlooks…and in graphical weather stories on National Weather Service forecast office web sites. Hydrologic statements may be issued for high flows that are within the banks of a river or large creek.

When flooding is possible on a river or large creek…a Flood Watch will be issued…meaning flooding is possible within the designated watch area.

When flooding is likely or occurring on a river or large creek…a Flood Warning will be issued…meaning flooding is expected or has been reported at designated river forecast points.

Flood Advisories may be issued for minor flooding on rivers and creeks.

An Areal Flood Warning may also be issued for flooding on a river or large creek in areas away from the designated river forecast points.

You can easily monitor potential flooding along rivers in Colorado and large creeks using the Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service monitoring system. Information on this monitoring system can be obtained from this web site…

http://water.weather.gov/ahps

This monitoring system can be accessed on Colorado National Weather Service forecast office web sites from the left hand menu…by clicking…rivers and lakes under the hydrology banner.

At each river and large creek gauge…you can easily look at current and forecast water levels…flood categories…historic crests…and flood impacts. Probabilities of exceedance of certain water levels by week or over the long term are also available.

In general…there will be some time to prepare for river and large creek flooding…and emergency management in your area has plans in place to address flooding issues. Know these plans and how you should act accordingly when Flood Watches and Flood Warnings are in effect.

For more information on flood safety go to…

http://www.floodsafety.noaa.gov

Tom Magnuson
Warning Coordination Meteorologist
National Weather Service Pueblo

Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week

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Lots of sun, slightly warmer temps and some lingering wind for Tuesday

Tuesday, March 6th, 2018 5:08am MDT

Thornton will enjoy another sunny day today and temperatures will climb a bit. We will still have some breezy winds today although not nearly as strong as yesterday’s blow.

The day starts with sunny skies and you can expect more of the same throughout the daytime hours. Temperatures will be on a slow climb today toward a mid-afternoon high in the upper 40s, likely falling short of the average high for today’s date of 51 degrees.

As for those frustrating winds, look for them to building this morning with gusts to 30mph or so being possible at their height late morning into mid-afternoon. After that, they should begin to ease.

Tonight, mostly clear skies will be above with lows again dipping to near the 20 degree mark.

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March 4 to March 10: This week in Denver weather history

Monday, March 5th, 2018 7:20am MDT
This week in Denver weather history

March 4 to March 10: This week in Denver weather history

March is Denver’s snowiest month and it is not unusual for us to receive heavy, wet snows during this time. Our look back at this week in Denver weather history highlights many such events.

From the National Weather Service:

2-4

In 1963…heavy wet snow was accompanied by strong gusty winds across metro Denver. Snowfall totaled 11.6 inches at Stapleton Airport where north winds gusting to 44 mph caused much blowing and drifting snow. Hazardous driving conditions resulted in many traffic accidents.

In 1976…snowfall totaled 8.0 inches at Stapleton International Airport where…on the 4th…northeast winds gusted to 31 mph reducing the visibility to as low as 1/4 mile. Maximum snow depth on the ground was 7 inches. Nine inches of snow were measured in Boulder.

3-4

In 1932…a dust storm occurred on the 3rd during the late afternoon. North winds gusting as high as 38 mph behind a cold front kicked up much blowing dust. Light snow developed during the evening and continued through the early morning of the 4th. Snowfall totaled 2.7 inches.

In 1934…strong winds raked Boulder. A wind gust to 62 mph was recorded at Valmont just east of Boulder. The strong winds caused hundreds of dollars of damage in Boulder.

In 1981…the most vigorous snow storm of the season struck the state…closing many schools and most highways connecting Denver…Colorado Springs…and Limon. North winds gusting to 43 mph whipped nearly 10 inches of snow in Denver into 3-foot drifts and snarled traffic on the morning of the 4th. Snowfall totaled 9.8 inches at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1989…a storm dumped 2 to 6 inches of snow across metro Denver. The snow caused 2-hour air traffic delays at Stapleton International Airport where 3.0 inches of snow fell and north winds gusted to 23 mph on the 3rd. There were many traffic accidents across metro Denver. I-70 was closed east of Denver for a time on the 3rd.

In 1991…high winds raked the eastern foothills. Wind gusts of 60 to 90 mph were common with 119 mph recorded at Wondervu southwest of Boulder…106 mph on Shanahan Ridge and 92 mph at Table Mesa…both in southwest Boulder. Several trees were uprooted and traffic signs and lights blown over. Flying debris caused damage to homes… Buildings…and cars. In Boulder…a stop sign was blown onto a car. There were no reports of injuries. Southwest winds gusting as high as 48 mph briefly reduced the prevailing visibility to as low as 1/16th mile in blowing dust at Stapleton International Airport on the 4th.

3-5

In 1961…snowfall totaled 8.3 inches at Stapleton Airport over the 3-day period with most of the snow…4.4 inches… falling on the 3rd. Winds were generally light gusting to only 23 mph.

4

In 1887…snowfall was only 0.1 inch. This was the earliest last measurable snow of the season.

In 1971…a wind gust to 102 mph was recorded at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder. A wind gust to 83 mph was measured at the National Bureau of Standards. In downtown Boulder…sustained winds reached 35 mph with gusts as high as 57 mph. No significant damage was reported. West winds gusted to only 28 mph at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1982…brief heavy snow accompanied by a few thunderstorms struck metro Denver. Lightning struck a house in Arvada setting it afire. The thunderstorm produced 5 inches of snowfall in a 2-hour period in Wheat Ridge. The snow made roads very icy and slick causing a 59-car pile-up on I-70 in north Denver. Snowfall with thunder totaled only 1.3 inches at Stapleton International Airport.

In 1997…a fast moving Pacific storm produced heavy snow in the foothills. Snowfall at Conifer measured 9 inches. Only light snow fell elsewhere over metro Denver. Snowfall totaled only 1.2 inches at the site of the former Stapleton International Airport. North northeast winds gusted to 28 mph at Denver International Airport.

4-5

In 1971…heavy post-frontal snowfall totaled 7.7 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 28 mph.

In 1992…snow spread from the mountains into the eastern foothills where 19 inches fell in Coal Creek Canyon. Rain fell over lower elevations of metro Denver with 1.12 inches of precipitation recorded at Stapleton International Airport and only one half inch of snow. North winds gusted to 32 mph.

In 2004…snowfall totaled 1.8 inches at the Denver Stapleton site. This was the only measurable snowfall of the month. Northeast winds gusted to 29 mph at Denver International Airport.

4-6

In 1931…a cold front with north winds gusting to 35 mph on the evening of the 4th brought snowfall on the 5th into the early morning of the 6th. Heavy snowfall totaled 6.2 inches. Temperatures plunged from a high of 58 degrees on the 4th to a low of only 22 degrees by midnight…which was also the high reading on the 5th.

In 1983…a slow moving moisture laden storm produced heavy snow and rain. Two to three feet of snow fell in the foothills at Wondervu and Nederland. The southern portion of metro Denver was buried with 26 inches of snow in southeast Aurora…25 inches at Franktown…and 19 inches at Littleton. Snowfall totaled 18.7 inches at Stapleton International Airport with most of the snow…18.0 inches… Falling on the 5th. Brighton received only 11 inches of new snow. Boulder was drenched by rain and received no snow. Precipitation from the storm totaled 3.06 inches at Stapleton International Airport where north winds gusted to 28 mph. The heavy wet snow snapped many tree limbs…which fell on power and phone lines causing many outages. Numerous highways were closed. Two thousand travelers were stranded at Stapleton International Airport where only one runway was open for a time. Many flights were canceled. One home in Denver was severely damaged when its roof collapsed under the weight of the heavy snow. The 2.68 inches of precipitation on the 5th was the greatest calendar day precipitation ever recorded in the city during March. The 2.79 inches of precipitation on the 4th and 5th was the greatest 24 hour precipitation ever measured during March.

5

In 1887…the longest snow-free period on record…232 days…  Began.  The last measurable snowfall of the season…0.1 inch…occurred on the 4th.  The first measurable snow of the next season…0.3 inch… Occurred on October 23rd.

In 1900…northwest winds were sustained to 51 mph with gusts to 60 mph.  The strong Bora winds warmed the temperature to a high of 44 degrees.

In 1926…post-frontal north winds were sustained to 44 mph with gusts as high as 54 mph.  The cold front also produced a thunderstorm.

In 1990…the southern portion of metro Denver was hit by a line of thunderstorms.  Heavy rain…0.90 to 2.40 inches…  And pea to marble size hail piled to a depth of 2 to 3 inches over portions of northern and eastern Douglas and western Arapahoe counties.  Thunderstorm winds to 50 mph were clocked at Centennial airport.  Thunderstorm rainfall was 0.62 inch at Stapleton International Airport.

5-6

In 1935…3.0 inches of snow fell in downtown Denver. This was the only measurable snow of the month. Northwest winds gusted to 29 mph on the 5th.

In 1940…heavy snowfall totaled 9.1 inches over downtown Denver. North winds gusted to 22 mph.

In 2000…high winds developed in and near the foothills just prior to the passage of an upper level storm system moving in from the west. Peak gusts from the windstorm included: 88 mph at the National Center for Atmospheric Research near Boulder…82 mph in Boulder…80 mph at the national wind technology center south of Boulder…79 mph on Rocky Flats…and 71 mph in Golden Gate Canyon. Several power lines were downed causing a few brief outages. Thunderstorms produced southeast wind gusts to 51 mph at Denver International Airport on the 5th.

In 2003…high winds spread from the mountains down the eastern slopes. The highest wind gusts were 85 mph atop the Gamow Tower on the University of Colorado campus in Boulder and 70 mph at the national wind technology center on Rocky Flats west of Broomfield. West winds gusted to 44 mph at Denver International Airport on the 6th.

6

In 1900…west winds were sustained to 41 mph with gusts to 49 mph.

In 1920…the high temperature warmed to only 6 degrees… The all-time record low maximum temperature for the month of March. The same reading also occurred on March 10…1948.

In 1972…a wind gust to 100 mph was recorded at Jefferson County Airport in Broomfield. Winds gusted in Boulder at speeds of 50 to 65 mph. A light plane was overturned… And there was damage to other planes at Boulder airport. The roof of a garage was blown off…and a mobile home was overturned in Boulder. A truck was blown off the highway 15 miles east of Boulder. West winds gusted to 51 mph at Stapleton International Airport. The warm Chinook winds were responsible for setting a new record high temperature for the date of 75 degrees…exceeding the old record of 72 degrees set in 1925.

In 1990…a blizzard pummeled metro Denver. Snow fell at a rate of 2 to 3 inches an hour. Gusty north winds whipped the snow into 2- to 3-foot drifts by noon. During the afternoon many stores and schools closed. By rush hour sustained winds of 35 to 46 mph and gusts to 58 mph reduced visibilities to near zero and whipped the new snow into 3- to 4-foot drifts. Many residential as well as secondary and primary roads became impassable. I-25 and I-70 were closed in and out of the city. Road crews cleared drifts as high as 12 feet in southeast Boulder and northwest Adams counties. Several hundred rush hour commuters…including the state’s governor…were caught in the blizzard conditions along a 15-mile stretch of the Denver-Boulder turnpike. Many remained snowbound in their vehicles up to 8 hours until rescued by police and the National Guard. The highway remained closed until mid-day on the 7th. Shelters for stranded commuters and travelers were opened in Broomfield and Castle Rock. Many workers didn’t even try to go home…but filled downtown hotels to near capacity. By early evening…Stapleton International Airport was shut down after an airliner with 82 passengers aboard skidded off a runway. Snowfall totals for the storm varied from 18 to 50 inches in the foothills above 6 thousand feet…9 to 24 inches west of I-25…and 2 to 12 inches over eastern metro Denver. Snowfall from the storm totaled 11.8 inches at Stapleton International Airport where the maximum snow depth on the ground was 7 inches due to melting.

In 2004…very strong downslope winds developed in and near the eastern foothills…causing numerous traffic accidents and extensive property damage to roofs and aluminum sheds. Three semi-trucks were toppled by the strong winds near the I-70 and C-470 interchange. One of the trucks was carrying a modular home…while another was hauling hazardous material. I-70 had to be closed in both directions until the accidents could be cleaned up. Strong winds forced the closure of State Highway 93 between Golden and Boulder…when the road became icy and snowpacked from localized ground blizzards. Another semi- truck was blown over near the intersection of State Highways 72 and 93 atop Rocky Flats. Scattered power outages were reported across northern and western sections of metro Denver…affecting around 2000 residents. In Boulder…several pine trees were uprooted by the high winds.

6-7 » Click here to read the rest of March 4 to March 10: This week in Denver weather history

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Thornton’s workweek starts with cool temps, lots of wind and high fire danger

Monday, March 5th, 2018 5:14am MDT

Not exactly a great way to start your workweek. Mother Nature will give us sun but little else redeeming in today’s forecast with very strong winds expected throughout the day.

Look for sunny to mostly sunny skies to be above throughout the day today. Temperatures will be chilly with highs only in the mid-40s but with the wind it will feel colder.

The wind will be the big story today with blustery winds starting things off and only getting stronger as the day progresses. Gusts to 50+ mph will be possible for much of the day. After dark the winds will ease but not come to an end until early tomorrow morning.

The wind, low humidity and dry fuels have prompted a Red Flag Warning that is in effect from 10:00am to 6:00pm. Please be extremely careful out there as any fire that gets started could grow extremely quickly.

Tonight, look for mostly clear skies will lows to around 20 degrees. As previously mentioned, it will remain breezy throughout the night.

How windy is it? Check out our live gauges here.

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Types of Floods – Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week

Monday, March 5th, 2018 3:20am MDT

Floods and Flash FloodsFloods 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.  Check back each day for a new topic.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BOULDER CO
600 AM MDT MON MARCH 5 2018

Flooding can be a major problem in Colorado as we experienced in September 2013. Heavy rain fell over a large area of the foothills south to the Pikes Peak Region, resulting in flash flooding. Much of the water that fell across northeast Colorado eventually ended up in the South Platte River, with major river flooding having occurred from Greeley to the state line.

River flooding can result from heavy rain during the summer and from rapid snow melt or thunderstorm rain combining with runoff from melting snow. Flash flooding refers to a dangerous sudden rise in water within an urban area, in a canyon, or along a creek or wash over normally dry land area. Flash floods result from heavy rainfall, sudden breaks in river ice jams, and dam or levee failures.

Flash floods can occur within a few minutes or hours, and can move at surprisingly high speeds, striking with little warning. Flash floods are quite destructive because of the force of the moving water, and the debris that accumulates in flood waters, such as trees and boulders, which can destroy roadways, bridges and buildings.

Another complication in Colorado is the serious flooding that can result when heavy rain falls on recently burned areas. Anyone living downstream from a recently burned area should be aware of the changed conditions, which result in much faster, turbulent, debris and ash clogged waters from the burned area.

The National Weather Service will discuss flood and flash flood potential in daily Hazardous Weather Outlooks and in the graphical weather story on National Weather Service websites. On days with a high threat for flooding, you may hear of a Flash Flood or Flood Watch, which means that flash flooding or flooding is possible within the watch area.

A Flood Warning means that flooding is imminent or has been reported along a river.

A Flash Flood Warning means that flash flooding has been reported or is imminent.

When a Flash Flood Warning is issued for your area, act quickly. If advised to evacuate, do so immediately. Go to higher ground or climb to safety before access is cut off by flood waters. Go Up, Not Out. Nearly half of all flash flood fatalities are vehicle related. Do not enter a flooded roadway, instead Turn Around…Don’t Drown. In rapidly rising waters, backing up away from water would be safer. One to two feet of water will carry away most vehicles, and you also cannot tell if the road is damaged beneath the water.

More information on flooding hazards can be found on the National Weather Service Flood Safety page here.

Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week continues through this Saturday.

Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week

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Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week begins

Sunday, March 4th, 2018 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 4 2018

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

Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Preparedness Week

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February 2018 weather recap: Colder than normal temps, near normal precip

Friday, March 2nd, 2018 5:43am MDT

If you felt like the past month was a bit chilly you would be correct. February saw temps a good bit below normal.  We did see some help with our lack of seasonal snow and precipitation was a bit above average as well.

The first third of the month continued the dry, warmer than normal conditions we had for much of January.  On the 10th of the month we experienced a very cold day and our first snowfall of the month. However, we soon returned to overall dry and warm conditions.

From there we saw things change significantly and quickly. Following an extraordinarily mild day on the 18th, temperature plummeted over the next 48 hours or so. So much so that the high temperature on the 20th was a record low maximum for the date.

Chilly temperatures lingered through the 25th as we saw a week of cold.  The 19th, 20th and 22nd also brought snow that helped to add to the seasonal totals.

The final three days of the month saw mercury readings at or above normal.

Overall average temperature for the month of February was 29.2 degrees.  At Denver International Airport where the Mile High City’s official records are kept, it was just slightly warmer with an average of 29.9 degrees. Both came a good bit short of the historical February average temperature of 32.5 degrees.

Temperatures in Thornton ranged from a high of 69 degrees on the 18th down to a low of 4 degrees below zero on the 21st.  Denver’s highest temperature matched ours while their coldest was 7 degrees below on the 21st.

On average, Denver receives 0.37 inches of precipitation in February. This year, Thornton was a bit above that with 0.45 inches while Denver was below with 0.31 inches.

Both Thornton and Denver saw above average levels of snow although we bested the Mile High City on that front. Thornton recorded 9.5 inches while Denver saw 6.2 inches. Average for the month is 5.7 inches.

Click here to view Thornton’s February 2018 climate report.

Thornton, Colorado's February 2018 weather and climate graph. (ThorntonWeather.com)

Thornton, Colorado’s February 2018 weather and climate graph. (ThorntonWeather.com)

From the National Weather Service:

CLIMATE REPORT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DENVER/BOULDER CO
805 AM MST THU MAR 1 2018

...................................

...THE DENVER CO CLIMATE SUMMARY FOR THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY 2018...

CLIMATE NORMAL PERIOD 1981 TO 2010
CLIMATE RECORD PERIOD 1872 TO 2018

WEATHER         OBSERVED          NORMAL  DEPART  LAST YEAR`S
                 VALUE   DATE(S)  VALUE   FROM    VALUE  DATE(S)
                                          NORMAL
................................................................
TEMPERATURE (F)
RECORD
 HIGH              80   02/10/2017
 LOW              -25   02/01/1951
                        02/08/1936
HIGHEST            69   02/18        66       3       80  02/10
LOWEST             -7   02/21                -6       11  02/26
AVG. MAXIMUM     44.4              46.2    -1.8     53.9
AVG. MINIMUM     15.4              18.9    -3.5     26.6
MEAN             29.9              32.5    -2.6     40.2
DAYS MAX >= 90      0               0.0     0.0        0
DAYS MAX <= 32      6               3.9     2.1        3
DAYS MIN <= 32     26              26.9    -0.9       21
DAYS MIN <= 0       3               1.3     1.7        0

PRECIPITATION (INCHES)
RECORD
 MAXIMUM         2.01   1934
 MINIMUM         0.01   1970
TOTALS           0.31              0.37   -0.06     0.23
DAILY AVG.       0.01              0.01    0.00     0.01
DAYS >= .01         5               5.3    -0.3        3
DAYS >= .10         2               0.7     1.3        1
DAYS >= .50         0               0.0     0.0        0
DAYS >= 1.00        0               0.0     0.0        0
GREATEST
 24 HR. TOTAL    0.14   02/10 TO 02/10           02/23 TO 02/24

 SNOWFALL (INCHES)
RECORDS
 TOTAL            6.2               5.7
RECORD FEBRUARY  22.4                     2015

DEGREE_DAYS
HEATING TOTAL     975               908      67      685
 SINCE 7/1       4057              4439    -382     3802
COOLING TOTAL       0                 0       0        0
 SINCE 1/1          0                 0       0        0

FREEZE DATES
RECORD
 EARLIEST     09/08/1962
 LATEST       06/08/2007
EARLIEST                        10/07
LATEST                          05/05
.................................................................

WIND (MPH)
AVERAGE WIND SPEED              9.9
RESULTANT WIND SPEED/DIRECTION   2/230
HIGHEST WIND SPEED/DIRECTION    38/270    DATE  02/24
HIGHEST GUST SPEED/DIRECTION    47/270    DATE  02/24

SKY COVER
POSSIBLE SUNSHINE (PERCENT)   MM
AVERAGE SKY COVER           0.60
NUMBER OF DAYS FAIR            7
NUMBER OF DAYS PC             12
NUMBER OF DAYS CLOUDY          9

AVERAGE RH (PERCENT)     60

WEATHER CONDITIONS. NUMBER OF DAYS WITH
THUNDERSTORMS 0
HEAVY RAIN             0    MIXED PRECIP            6
LIGHT RAIN           0    RAIN                    0
LT FREEZING RAIN       6    FREEZING RAIN           0
HEAVY SNOW             1    HAIL                    0
LIGHT SNOW            15    SNOW                    6
FOG                   20    FOG W/VIS <=1/4 MILE    9
HAZE                   9

-  INDICATES NEGATIVE NUMBERS.
R  INDICATES RECORD WAS SET OR TIED.
MM INDICATES DATA IS MISSING.
T  INDICATES TRACE AMOUNT.
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Thornton’s weekend starts very mild, will end cooler and breezy

Friday, March 2nd, 2018 5:12am MDT

Not a bad looking three-day period for us. Friday and Saturday look to be quite nice with calm conditions and temperatures well above normal. Sunday will see things cool down though and introduce a healthy dose of wind.

For today, look for sunny skies to be above throughout. Winds will be out of the west and become just a bit breezy in the afternoon and early evening. High temperatures today will top out around 66 degrees.

Tonight, skies remain clear with lows a bit below freezing.

Saturday looks to be much like today. Sunny skies will be above with highs again in the mid to upper 60s. Winds should be calmer.

Saturday night into Sunday morning expect mostly clear skies and lows to around 30 degrees.

Closing out the weekend, Sunday a system will be moving through that will cool things down. Highs will top out in the low to mid-50s under mostly to partly sunny skies. The main story will be some strong winds that will arrive by late morning.

Have a great weekend!

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