Winter Locks in for the End of 2017, Beginning of 2018

It’s been chilly since Christmas morning, and it looks like it will stay that way for days to come!

Despite the fact that this December has been much cooler than last December, temperatures through the 27th have been 3.4° warmer than average for Augusta according to the Southeast Regional Climate Center. So, typically, it’s colder than it has been so far this month.

What the Models Suggest

While chances of snow or any other type of frozen precipitation don’t look too realistic through New Year’s Day, it will certainly feel like winter in the Central Savannah River Area for the foreseeable future. Computer models are in disagreement as to which precipitation type (if any) might occur around January 2-3, 2018.

[Related: I Need You to Stop Fantasizing About Snow]

What they don’t disagree on is that it’s going to be cold! Augusta’s average high temperature this time of year is about 57°, and the average low is about 33°. By and large, over the next week at least, temperatures will be below that. Here’s a look at some computer model forecasts for next Thursday evening:

500h_anom-conus-ecmwf
ECMWF (European) model of 500 mb height anomaly for Thursday evening, Jan. 4, 2018. This image shows an unusually strong trough of low pressure (and cold air) over the eastern U.S.
500h_anom-conus1
The American GFS model is in relative agreement with the ECMWF, showing a strong trough of low pressure at the 500 mb level over the eastern U.S. for Thursday evening, Jan. 4, 2018.
850_anom-conus1
The ECMWF shows extremely cold temperatures (compared to average) at the 850 mb level (not too far above the surface) over the eastern U.S. for Thursday evening, Jan. 4, 2018.
850_anom-conus1-gfs
The GFS also shows extremely cold temperatures (compared to average) at the 850 mb level (not too far above the surface) over the eastern U.S. for Thursday evening, Jan. 4, 2018.

Cold Weather Tips

Take steps to protect you, your loved ones, your home and your pets from cold weather. Morning low temperatures may dip into the teens next week.

  • cover any sensitive plants you wish to save
  • bring pets indoors
  • to protect pipes, drip a faucet (especially an outdoor one) at night
  • make sure heating systems are in good working order and that any space heaters are placed far away from flammable materials
  • when driving, make sure you have adequate coats and/or blankets with you in case your car breaks down

Stay warm, and best wishes for the new year!

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