Commonwealth Journal

News Live

April 15, 2014

Warm weather interrupted by winter redux


Somerset —

 Meteorologists said Tuesday that as skies cleared last night and winds became light temperatures would plummet well into the 20s. Upper teens would be possible in colder valleys, the National Weather Service said. Frost is also possible tonight and again Thursday night into early Friday morning.
  The current cold spell likely won’t set low temperature records. Seven years ago –– April 2007 –– Arctic cold moved in April 5 and low temperatures dropped to 19 on April 7; 18 on April 8; and 20 on April 9. On four of five days during the cold spell, maximum readings didn’t get out of the 40s. The ground froze like a rock and snowflakes put meringue on green grass. There wasn’t as much snow in April 2007 as the amount that fell yesterday morning.
March 2007 was much warmer than last month and spring growth had progressed more than now. The bitterly cold weather in April 2007 froze foliage and gave woodlands an autumn-like appearance.
A similar cold snap occurred in late April 1986. The freeze wiped out an entire fruit crop.
No doubt emerging leaves this spring are frozen by last night’s cold. In a week or so, after the freeze damage becomes evident, we may call this a “brown spring” as we did seven years ago, and in April 1986.
“Trees will be all right,” said Wilson. “This kind of cold causes stress, but leaves will re-emerge.
The current cold spell won’t last as long as the April 2007 deep freeze. Today’s maximum temperature should be in the upper 50s and the highs will be in the 60s for the remainder of the week. Nighttime temperatures will remain below normal.

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