“According to preliminary data, January 2020 in New Jersey was the ninth mildest since records commenced in 1895, averaging 37.3 degrees – 6.6 degrees above average,” said David A. Robinson, the New Jersey State Climatologist and a distinguished professor in the Department of Geography in the School of Arts and Sciences. “It was also dry, with 70% of normal precipitation (rain and melted snow), ranking 26th driest on record. Snowfall averaged 1.3 inches statewide, which was 5.9 inches below average. It ranks as the 11th least snowiest January on record. The 0.1 inches of snow in South Jersey was just the third time that total or no snow accumulated in that region.”
“With cold air confined to the Arctic, most of the precipitation fell as rain and any snow that fell melted rather quickly,” said Robinson, who oversees the Rutgers NJ Weather Network and helps coordinate the New Jersey Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network. “The snow season to date has seen an average of 4.5 inches in New Jersey. This ranks as the 19th slowest start of the snow season. But don’t put the shovels and cross-country skis away quite yet. Despite February likely getting off to a mild start, there still remains plenty of time for snow to fall. In fact, the last three snow seasons have seen the largest monthly totals in March.”
Meteorologist Steve Decker, associate teaching professor and director of the Meteorology Undergraduate Program in the Department of Environmental Sciences in the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, said “the polar vortex has remained locked over the Arctic in January, keeping the coldest air at bay. In addition, the arrangement of thunderstorm activity in the tropics has nudged the jet stream into a configuration that has shifted the storm track to our west, putting us on the warmer side of most storms that approached our area.”
Decker is available to comment at firstname.lastname@example.org
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