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October 2014

Archive for October, 2014

Landslide Season has Arrived

    After today and tomorrow’s predicted rainfall, the likelihood of landslides in the Seattle area will increase. That’s based on a methodology developed by the USGS with the help of Seattle Public Utilities in which rainfall data prior to past slides were closely examined. Despite the fact that we have yet to experience widespread […]


Lighter than Expected

    As expected, the remnants of Hurricane Ana passed through quietly, without causing problems overnight. SPU’s Operations Response Center received 30 drainage calls, a third of them for street ponding since midnight. SPU field crews have responded to at least 20 of those calls, one unrelated to the weather but still high priority, in […]


Ana’s Remnants

    The remnants of Hurricane Ana will pass by the region tonight, and while the City and Watersheds will be spared from the worst of the passing storm, a fair amount of rainfall is expected overnight into tomorrow. After a break from precipitation on Wednesday, another frontal system will roll through and keep Thursday […]


Myriad Mysteries

    While the rain that fell over the past 36 hours was never that intense, SPU’s drainage system performed pretty well, thanks in part field crews who worked hard through yesterday’s rush hour. Between 10 AM yesterday and 10 AM today, there were 63 drainage calls from customers, none of which represented emergencies.   […]


One Down, More to Go

  2 PM Update: The latest 14-hour storm tally gives Magnuson Park the lead with 1.15″ total, followed by Maple Leaf at 1.09″, then Woodland Park with 0.97″. (For reference, 1.56″ in 12 hours would be a 2-year event.) SPU also received 27 more customer calls between 11 AM and 2 PM, most for ponding […]


Highly Active Pattern

    It’s been a while since we’ve seen weather systems race toward us like this, especially at this point in the year. We’re currently looking at over 2.5″ (lowlands), 3.5″ (mountains) of rainfall through the weekend and three separate periods of gusty winds.   Rainfall is not forecast to be particularly intense during the […]


Another Wet and Windy Week

    Post-frontal showers will continue into this evening, and a clap of thunder with briefly intense rainfall cannot be ruled out. There will then be a lull in activity overnight through most of tomorrow before the arrival of this week’s main event—another meandering atmospheric river expected to hit the coast and parts south more […]


Department of Defense, National Security and Climate Change

  The responsibility of the Department of Defense is the security of our country. That requires thinking ahead and planning for a wide range of contingencies. Among the future trends that will impact our national security is climate change…   In our defense strategy, we refer to climate change as a ‘threat multiplier’ because it […]


Splitting Fronts

    One of the hallmarks of El Niño round these parts are cold fronts that shred to pieces right before they arrive. That’ll often result in storm hype followed by head scratching—not unlike what happened last weekend. While this winter’s (barely) still-forecast El Niño hasn’t yet started, we’ll get to see a few splitting […]


Hubs, Spokes and Thunderstorms

      Like spokes rotating about a hub, little atmospheric disturbances, or shortwaves, will wrap around a broad area of low pressure currently hanging out offshore (image above). The shortwaves will kick off rounds of showers and gusty winds tonight through tomorrow or Thursday. That “parent” low will eventually dissipate and be replaced by […]