Friday 11 March 2011

February weather summary

After the extreme low temperatures of early winter caused by an Arctic airstream over Ireland, Atlantic weather patterns dominated during February, resulting in much milder and wetter conditions across the country. Deep depressions also brought strong winds at times, particularly early in the month.

It was the warmest February for between nine and 13 years almost everywhere, with mean air temperatures for the month around two degrees higher than normal. There were only between three and seven days with air frost at most inland stations, compared with the normal number for February of between five and nine, and where frost did occur it was mostly slight.

Monthly rainfall totals were above normal everywhere and were well above normal in parts of the west and midlands, where it was the wettest February since 2002 at some stations and the wettest since 1997 at Claremorris. The heaviest daily falls were measured between the 3rd and 9th, with 5-day totals of over 100mm between the 3rd and 7th in places; falls of snow were recorded in northern areas on the 6th/7th. There were between 15 and 22 wetdays during the month at most stations (days with 1mm or more rainfall), higher than the normal range for February of between 11 and 16 wetdays.

Despite a dull start to the month, sunshine totals were above normal almost everywhere, with very sunny conditions developing between the 26th and 28th
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