Another month ended, another month of above-normal temperatures.
March is the ninth month in a row to come in milder than normal — averaging out at 45.5 degrees at Long Island MacArthur Airport, which is 6.2 degrees above the monthly norm.
You have to go back to June 2015 to see mention of cooler than average in the monthly wrap-up summaries issued by the National Weather Service’s Upton office, with that month averaging out at 0.2 degrees below normal.
Of course, the jaw-dropping month was December with its steady stream of warm days, which caused the month to end 12.8 degrees above normal.
Meteorological winter, which ran from December through February, ended up the warmest on record, with climatologists ascribing credit — or blame — to a very strong El Niño, a climate pattern that starts with a warming of the Pacific and that affects weather worldwide.
A year ago March — just as a reminder — came in at 4.1 degrees below normal and presented the area with a record 19.7 inches of snow. The March just ended registered a 1.72-inch precipitation deficit, with its 3.2 inches of snow falling short of the norm by 1.3 inches.
As for April in the short-term, we’re headed for a cold spell running from Sunday into the middle of next week, forecasters say. But there’s uncertainty as to how the month in its entirety will unfold.
The Climate Prediction Center indicates an equal chance of above, below and right at normal, which is 49.1 degrees.