National Overview - October 2003
Maps and Graphics:
|Current Month||Most Recent 3 Months||Most Recent 6 Months|
|Most Recent 12 Months||US Percent Area Very
||Monthly Drought Indices|
|Temperatures were significantly above average
nationally for October. Warmth that has been persistent in the West
for many months also spread across much of the central states this
month, with the east coast remaining near average or slightly
cooler than average, especially in the Northeast.
Precipitation was less than average across much of the country in October with only the extreme Northeast and Northwest receiving significantly above average rainfall.
For additional details, see the Monthly Highlights section. For details and graphics on weather events across the U.S. and the globe go to NCDC's Global Hazards page.
The Atlantic Basin had above average activity in terms of the number of named storms in 2003. As of October 31st, 14 named storms had developed, which is well above the 1944-1996 average of 9.8, but consistent with a marked increase in the annual number of tropical systems since the mid 1990s (1995-2002 average = 13.3). Six of the named storms were classified as hurricanes and three of those were 'major' (category three or higher on the Saffir-Simpson scale) See the Atlantic Hurricane page for further details.
In the Eastern North Pacific, the season began slowly, though 16 named storms had developed as of the end of October. None of the storms reached hurricane strength until Hurricane Ignacio in late August, however seven storms had reached hurricane strength by October 31st, with one of those reaching 'major' status. The 1966-1996 average for the Eastern Pacific is for 16.4 storms to form. The 1995-2002 average is slightly lower than this at 12.8. See the East Pacific Hurricane page for more details.
Indices used to determine the state of ENSO suggest that the Equatorial Pacific is in a neutral ENSO phase and Sea Surface Temperatures are slightly above normal across the eastern equatorial Pacific. To see the latest NOAA advisory and typical impacts of a La Nina or El Nino episode for the U.S., go to NOAA's Climate Prediction Center.
Monthly and Seasonal Highlights:
See NCDC's Monthly Extremes web-page for weather and climate records for the month of October.