How Wet Was July?

By: Chris Smith
By: Chris Smith

Everywhere I go folks keep talking about how tired they are of the rain. The reality is though that this July was just about average when it came to rain.

When it comes to any weather statistics you do have to understand the limitations we have here in NWFL because we seem to move and change weather stations like most people change socks!  The most recent change was the move of the weather equipment from the old airport in Panama City to Northwest Beaches Int'l near West Bay.  While temperature comparisons would not be fair... I think rainfall comparisons would not be like comparing apples and oranges.  So, for the sake of transparency I wanted to make you aware we are comparing this year at NW Beaches to years 1990-2011 at a weather station 5 miles NE of Panama City.

Now... down to business...

July... as you might expect is our wettest month on average with nearly 8" of rainfall!  You can thank you 'popcorn' showers and storms that seem to pop up every day.  See, there is a good reason on a typical July 7Day that we have at least a chance of rain every day! :-)


 This past July (2012) we received 7.04" of rain at NW Beach per the NWS...

The 1972-2011 Average is  8.02"
The most ever was 21.87" in 1975
The least ever was 1.10" in 1983

I looked back at the climate data for the old airport going back to 1990 and here are the rainfall totals.

I found this data at the Southeast Region Climate Center.

2011 - 10.47"
2010 - 4.5"
2009 - 3.85"
2008 - 5.32"
2007 - 4.77"
2006 - 4.94"
2005 - 5.81"
2004 - 6.97"
2003 - 11.62"
2002 - 3.01"
2001 - 6.47"
2000 - 4.94"
1999 - 6.21"
1998 - 1.94"
1997 - 11.00"
1996 - 9.92"
1995 - 3.94"
1994 - 7.05"
1993 - 6.67"
1992 - 8.04"
1991 - 11.96"
1990 - 8.00"

So, over this 23 year period... 2012 came in at the 10th wettest... just slightly higher than average.

A look at radar estimates over NWFL for this past month shows most of the area ended up BELOW average.


So, while 2012 may have seemed like a really wet month... it was actually slightly below average in rainfall.

As for the month of August. we have an equal chance of above or below average precipitation over NWFL.



As always... if you ever have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.




Chris Smith
Chief Meteorologist, WJHG-TV

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