So far, 2012 is North Texas' second warmest year

Posted Thursday, Nov. 01, 2012  comments  Print Reprints

Topics: Texas, North Texas

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If you thought there was no way this year could possibly be warmer than last year when North Texas had a miserably hot summer, think again.

So far this year has been the second warmest on record, eclipsed only by 2006.

The average temperature from January through October was 72.1 degrees while 2006 was 72.5 degrees for the same period.

At least some of the blame should go toward an unusually warm winter and spring.

"Part of it is we did have a very warm January, February and March," said National Weather Service meteorologist Jennifer Dunn. "We were 6.7 degrees above normal just in March."

And November is also going to start out well above normal.

DFW Airport tied the record high today of 88 and there's a good chance Friday's record high of 86 will be broken.

Drier than normal weather also seems to be creeping back into parts of North Texas.

October, which is typically one of the wettest months of the year, was unusually dry. At DFW Airport, 1.02 inches of rain fell during October, which was 3.20 inches below normal.

That was enough to drop DFW Airport 1.62 inches below normal for the year and make it the 20th driest October on record.

Some areas are even further behind.

Fort Worth's Alliance Airport is 5.9 inches below normal for the year and Denton is 9.72 below normal.

"It was really the month that pushed us below normal," Dunn said, noting that at the end of September, DFW Airport was 1.58 inches above normal for the year.

South of the Metroplex, it was even drier. Waco had the third-driest October on record, picking up .06 inches of rainfall.

Long-term outlooks also are trending away from a wet winter. Earlier projections had predicted El Niño would bring more precipitation to Texas but that appears to be less likely. El Niño is caused by the warming of sea-surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean off South America, while La Niña, which tends to bring drier weather, takes place when sea-surface temperatures are colder than normal.

"The outlooks for the winter have changed some regarding precipition and are not really favoring wetter than normal anymore," Dunn said. "But as far as short-term chances, we are not in a dry pattern."

Some should see rain this weekend.

There's a 20 to 30 percent chance of rain Saturday and Sunday. Another chance of rain will likely return toward the end of next week.

Bill Hanna, (817) -390

Twitter: @fwhanna

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