2006 Weather Year in Review

2006 Central Alabama Headlines

  • First Tornado of the Year January 13th
  • Minor Winter Weather Episode in February
  • Supercell Thunderstorms of March 13th
  • Severe Thunderstorms of April 7th & 8th
  • Summer Drought Conditions
  • Mercury Hits the Century Mark Areawide
  • Quiet Tropical Season
  • Warm Front Tornadoes September 22nd
  • Fall Severe Weather Episode November 15th

 

Severe Weather

Severe Thunderstorms can occur in any month and 2006 was no different. The first tornado occurred on January 13th in Barbour County. Although this was an isolated tornado occurrence, it produced damage in northwest Barbour County and one person was injured as the tornado crossed US Highway 82.

The Spring Severe Weather Season was fairly active in 2006. Straight line wind gusts of 60 to 85 mph, quarter or larger size hail and/or tornadoes were generated on March 9th, March 13th, March 20th, April 7th/8th and on May 10th. An unusual occurrence of softball size hail was reported on April 21st in Walker County. Perhaps the most active 24 hour period occurred the evening of April 7th and continued into the early morning hours of April 8th. Several supercell thunderstorms produced damage in Central Alabama. Six tornadoes touched down, numerous areas were covered with hail and many structures and trees were damaged by high winds.

On November 15th, eight tornadoes along with severe wind gusts caused damage across South Central Alabama. An F2 tornado touched down in Montgomery which produced extensive damage to the post office and the Fun Zone Skating Rink. Many homes sustained roof damage and a few apartment complexes suffered damage. Another F2 dropped down near Hamilton Crossroads in Pike County. A large water tower was destroyed and numerous structures suffered significant damage.

On November 30th, four tornadoes touched down in Marengo and Hale Counties. These tornadoes were produced from a line of moderate showers. These showers were absent of lightning which would typically be present during tornado formation.

An unusual event happened in Winston County on July 24th. A dust devil caused damage to several structures near Haleyville. Dust devils form in hot, fair and dry conditions when the air in contact with the ground heats up much more than the air immediately above it. The air rises quickly and a vortex is formed. Dust devils rarely produce damage...but have been known to produce winds greater than 50 mph.

Preliminary severe weather numbers for 2006:

Days with Severe Weather in 2006
Days with Tornadoes 9
Days with Wind Damage or Wind Speeds 58 mph or greater 43
Days with Hail greater than .75 inches 35
Days with Flash Floods 11
Tornadoes in 2006
F0 11
F1 15
F2 5
F3/F4/F5 0
Total # of Tornadoes 31
Average # of Tornadoes (1961-2000) 17

Tropical Weather

The NOAA 2006 Atlantic Hurricane Season official forecast was for a high likelyhood of an above-normal season and a chance of a near normal season, calling for 12 to 15 named storms. With all the devastating tropical systems affecting Central Alabama over the past few years, we all had our fingers crossed. Well, November 30th marked the end of the 2006 Atlantic Hurricane Season. Only 9 named storms occurred during the 2006 season. This was the second lowest number since 1995. This reduced activity was attributed largely to the rapid onset of El Niño conditions in the equatorial Pacific, which suppressed conditions conducive to hurricane formation in the Atlantic.

None of the nine named tropical systems had a direct or adverse affect on Central Alabama.

The end of 2006 Atlantic Hurricane Season
National Hurricane Center 2006 Atlantic Hurricane Season

 

Winter Weather

Winter Weather has almost been non-existent over the past several years. There have been plenty of cold days during the winter season but no significant icing or snow. The only winter weather event of 2006 occurred on February 18th. Marion, Lamar and Winston Counties received some freezing rain. The freezing rain produced ice accumulations up to 0.20 of an inch on elevated surfaces...such as trees and bridges. A few automobile accidents were attributed to the ice. A few tree limbs were also broken off due to the weight of the ice. The ice lasted only a few hours and then melted.

In January 2005, an Ice Storm occurred in East Alabama, but no measurable snow has fallen at an observing site since 2002 or earlier.

Birmingham Cold Weather Facts...Here.
Montgomery Cold Weather Facts...Here.

 

Climatology

2006 was another warm and dry year across Central Alabama. The yearly average temperature was at least one degree above normal at all reporting stations. Additionally, a majority of the reporting stations had deficits of 5 inches or more in yearly rainfall.

Summer thunderstorms were a bit more spotty in 2006 than usual across Central Alabama. Many areas were slightly below normal heading into the typically drier summer months. Several reporting stations and cooperative observers did not receive any rain for stretches of 10 to 20 days. This lack of rain occurred in May and June. This preceded the normally dry part of the year...August, September and October. In areas along and south of US Highway 80, D3 drought (extreme) was experienced while the remainder of the area saw the development of D2 drought (severe) by mid July. Agricultural and Hydrologic impacts were most significant as crops suffered and rivers flowed at below normal stages. Many municipalities across Central Alabama imposed temporary water restrictions.

The summer heat returned as all of the reporting stations measured 100 degrees or above. Hamilton measured the areas highest reading of 106 degrees, observed on July 20th. Tuscaloosa reached or exceeded the century mark 10 times. Most of Central Alabama had not experienced the century mark in several years.

The coldest temperatures of the year occurred on December 8th and 9th. All of Central Alabama fell into the mid to upper teens. But after this brief cold spell, the year ended on a high note with temperatures much above normal.

Here are some selected cities data for Central Alabama. All data are considered preliminary.


Location
Weather Elements Birmingham Montgomery Anniston Tuscaloosa Calera Troy
Hottest Day 100 on 6/21, 6/22 8/8 102 on 8/8 100 on 7/19, 8/8 101 on 8/8, 8/9, 8/20 100 on 8/8 103 on 8/8
Coldest Day 17 on 12/8 18 on 12/9 16 on 12/9 17 on 12/9 19 on 12/8 17 on 12/9
Wettest Day 3.58" on 4/20 3.79" on 11/15 3.04" on 2/6 3.59" on 9/24 4.54" on 9/12 2.31" on 8/30
Wettest Month 8.70" in February 5.15" in February 7.49" in February 7.21" in October 6.45" in September 5.09" in May


City Mean Temperature for 2006 Mean Temperature Departure from Normal Total Rainfall for 2006 Total Rainfall Departure from Normal
Birmingham 64.7 + 2.9 56.57" + 2.58"
Montgomery 66.1 + 1.0 44.92" - 9.85"


Here are the top 5 yearly records for selected cities:

Birmingham (records Since 1900)
Warmest Coldest Wettest Driest
1921 - 66.1 1983 - 60.2 1916 - 81.82" 1904 - 34.32"
1933 - 65.5 1976 - 60.3 1961 - 76.48" 1931 - 36.14"
1927 - 65.5 1966 - 60.5 1903 - 76.21" 1943 - 36.86"
1922 - 65.3 1968 - 60.7 1980 - 75.36" 1908 - 39.52"
1938 - 65.1 1969 - 60.8 1948 - 71.45" 1954 - 40.66"
Montgomery (records Since 1910)
Warmest Coldest Wettest Driest
1927 - 68.0 1976 - 62.4 1929 - 78.25" 1953 - 26.82"
1933 - 67.8 1983 - 63.5 1912 - 77.89" 1931 - 34.44"
1921 - 67.8 1969 - 63.6 1989 - 75.47" 1968 - 35.46"
1922 - 67.5 1996 - 63.6 1983 - 75.47" 2000 - 37.95"
1911 - 67.3 1968 - 63.7 1975 - 72.98" 1914 - 37.99"


This table compares rainfall amounts from previous years with the current year.
The current year's data has a green background.
The averages are shown just below the current year's rainfall with a yellow background.

    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total Departure
Anniston 2004 2.13 5.06 2.44 4.00 5.65 5.02 7.00 2.13 6.82 3.19 10.35 3.11 56.90 +4.97
  2005 2.35 4.60 5.76 4.63 3.89 3.55 6.75 2.68 0.71 1.77 4.06 4.30 45.05 -6.88
  2006 5.62 7.49 4.68 2.89 3.91 1.26 2.56 2.96 3.74 3.59 3.81 2.99 45.50 -6.43
1971-2000 30 yr avg 5.34 4.80 6.28 4.87 4.16 4.14 4.49 3.35 3.32 2.87 4.20 4.11 51.93
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total Departure
Birmingham 2004 2.77 5392 3.14 3.24 5.04 7.01 3.29 2.66 10.96 2.61 11.13 3.55 61.32 +7.33
  2005 1.94 4.08 5.85 5.24 5.60 4.91 9.50 1.68 1.73 0.50 3.62 4.62 49.27 -4.72
  2006 5.97 8.70 4.72 7.81 2.53 4.77 5.03 2.69 3.74 4.97 2.60 3.03 56.56 +2.57
1971-2000 30 yr avg 5.45 4.21 6.10 4.67 4.83 3.78 5.09 3.48 4.05 3.23 4.63 4.47 53.99
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total Departure
Montgomery 2004 2.57 5.47 0.88 4.42 3.58 8.46 2.33 3.12 7.05 1.98 6.94 2.79 49.59 -5.18
  2005 2.61 5.45 10.35 6.96 2.87 2.54 6.62 3.47 2.57 1.42 2.32 2.49 49.67 -5.10
  2006 4.51 5.15 3.41 2.53 2.80 4.39 1.93 4.07 3.46 4.02 4.97 3.73 44.97 -9.80
1971-2000 30 yr avg 5.04 5.45 6.39 4.38 4.14 4.13 5.31 3.63 4.22 2.58 4.53 4.97 54.77
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total Departure
Tuscaloosa 2004 3.02 8.31 2.48 5.25 2.83 4.31 3.00 3.99 2.20 2.31 11.13 1.89 50.72 -6.52
  2005 2.95 4.34 3.57 6.49 5.87 7.14 7.13 3.49 2.26 0.16 2.53 3.08 49.01 -8.23
  2006 5.34 5.35 4.15 3.46 3.65 1.14 3.17 0.41 6.04 7.21 4.83 4.58 49.33 -7.91
1971-2000 30 yr avg 5.72 5.07 6.37 5.10 4.55 4.20 5.71 3.70 3.54 3.47 4.84 4.97 57.24
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total Departure
Calera 2004 2.51 5.65 1.98 4.54 5.09 4.98 3.11 3.71 3.49 2.52 11.48 3.60 52.66 -4.82
  2005 2.65 7.23 7.61 5.48 3.95 3.86 9.94 5.83 1.70 0.25 3.49 4.92 56.91 -0.57
  2006 5.45 5.28 4.91 4.45 4.90 1.72 3.32 3.08 6.45 4.73 3.80 4.21 52.30 -5.18
1995-2006 Avg 5.43 5.86 5.37 4.96 4.73 4.96 4.66 4.26 4.25 3.13 5.35 4.53 57.48
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total Departure
Troy 2004 2.67 5.82 0.44 2.47 3.65 8.66 5.21 6.96 7.57 2.66 3.43 2.32 51.86 +6.08
  2005 1.92 3.15 4.96 8.07 1.36 4.34 8.82 9.44 2.13 1.32 3.40 2.54 51.45 +5.67
  2006 4.75 3.65 2.37 2.95 5.09 2.50 1.37 3.78 3.28 2.88 3.23 1.13 36.98 -8.80
2000-2006 Avg 2.63 3.37 5.47 3.78 2.56 5.86 4.25 4.92 3.87 2.45 3.32 3.31 45.78
 


This table compares average temperatures from previous years with the current year.
The current year's data has a green background.
The averages are shown just below the current year's temperatures with a yellow background.

    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Yearly Departure
Anniston 2004 43.3 44.3 58.4 61.3 72.7 76.7 79.3 76.8 73.4 68.1 57.2 44.6 63.0 +1.0
  2005 48.0 50.4 52.5 61.1 66.9 77.1 80.7 81.1 77.4 63.8 55.7 42.1 63.1 +1.1
  2006 50.3 44.7 55.3 66.8 71.6 76.9 81.6 82.7 72.0 61.0 52.6 48.8 63.7 +1.7
1971-2000 30 yr avg 44.7 47.4 50.4 60.8 69.4 76.4 80.0 79.5 72.8 62.8 53.5 46.1 62.0
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Yearly Departure
Birmingham 2004 43.3 45.1 59.1 62.1 73.7 76.4 79.5 76.5 77.2 69.0 57.6 44.9 63.5 +1.6
  2005 48.2 50.4 53.4 61.4 67.5 76.8 80.5 81.3 77.7 63.6 56.3 42.7 63.3 +1.4
  2006 50.7 44.9 56.1 67.8 71.1 79.2 83.4 83.7 73.3 62.5 53.8 49.9 64.7 +2.8
1971-2000 30 yr avg 41.5 45.7 54.7 62.0 69.4 76.3 79.8 79.0 73.4 62.5 53.1 45.2 61.9
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Yearly Departure
Montgomery 2004 45.9 47.7

61.7

64.1 75.8 80.5 84.0 81.1 78.0 72.9 61.7 49.2 66.9 +2.0
  2005 51.3 53.7 55.6 62.7 70.1 78.8 81.9 81.6 79.6 65.1 57.7 46.0 65.3 +0.4
  2006 53.1 48.4 58.4 68.6 72.1 79.7 83.3 84.0 75.1 64.4 54.8 51.2 66.1 +1.2
1971-2000 30 yr avg 46.1 49.8 57.2 64.7 71.9 78.7 81.3 80.6 76.5 65.8 56.6 49.5 64.9
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Yearly Departure
Tuscaloosa 2004 45.9 47.7 61.7 64.1 75.8 80.5 84.0 81.1 78.0 72.9 61.7 49.2 66.9 +2.3
  2005 51.6 53.7 55.4 62.7 70.1 78.8 81.9 81.6 79.6 65.1 57.7 46.0 65.3 +0.7
  2006 53.4 48.4 58.4 68.6 72.1 79.7 83.3 84.0 75.1 64.4 54.8 51.2 66.1 +1.5
1971-2000 30 yr avg 45.2 49.8 57.5 63.9 71.9 78.6 82.0 81.3 76.2 65.1 55.3 47.9 64.6
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Yearly Departure
Calera 2004 44.4 46.1 59.6 62.8 73.6 77.4 79.3 76.6 74.4 68.7 57.6 45.1 63.8 +0.9
  2005 48.3 50.9 53.5 61.4 68.4 77.0 80.1 80.7 78.1 64.1 56.4 43.8 63.6 +0.7
  2006 51.4 45.4 56.8 67.6 70.7 78.8 82.5 82.7 73.3 61.7 53.5 50.0 64.5 +1.6
1995-2006 Avg 45.7 48.1 55.1 62.4 70.6 76.3 80.4 79.8 74.0 63.7 53.7 45.2 62.9
 
    Jan Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Yearly Departure
Troy 2004 45.9 47.2 59.8 61.5 72.9 77.6 80.1 77.7 74.2 69.6 59.1 46.7 64.4 -0.2
  2005 49.7 53.2 55.1 61.2 70.3 78.2 81.3 80.8 78.2 64.4 57.3 46.2 64.7 +0.1
  2006 53.2 48.7 58.2 68.2 71.5 78.9 82.5 83.2 74.0 63.8 54.9 52.5 65.8 +1.2
2000-2006 Avg 48.4 50.3 57.2 64.8 71.9 77.7 80.3 80.1 74.9 65.4 56.8 47.3 64.6
 


The following table shows the number of days the high or low temperature was equal or above/below a given temperature.

Location # of days greater than
or equal to 95oF
# of days greater than
or equal to 100 oF
# of days less than
or equal to 32oF
# of days less than
or equal to 20oF
Anniston 32 2 46 3
Birmingham 30 3 38 2
Montgomery 49 8 36 2
Tuscaloosa 51 10 47 2
Calera 30 1 27 1
Troy 51 5 42 2

 

  • Enhanced Climate Web Page...Here.
  • National 1st Half of 2006 Report...Click Here.
  • US Experiences Hot Summer...Click Here.
  • United States Weather Year in Review...Click Here.

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