February: A Month For Snow and Severe Weather

We live in Oklahoma.  We know the weather is constantly changing from one extreme to the next.  As we start a new month tomorrow, we’ll be tracking not only the peak for snowfall, but also the risk of severe weather. 

It was one year ago today that would be the start of the Blizzard of 2011, when almost 12″ of snow fell, winds maxed out at 53 mph, and temperatures dipped as low as seven degrees.  Heavy snow events don’t happen that often in Oklahoma City.  You can see from the map below, courtesy of the NWS, that we get about eight, 8-inch or more snow events every five to ten years.

The odds are higher in the Panhandle, especially in March, when that region typically sees its heaviest snowfalls.

While heavy snow is not in our forecast this week, showers and thunderstorms are.

“Dixie Alley,” the geographic region where tornadoes occur most often during the fall and winter months,

has been getting hit hard this year.  However for Oklahoma, February marks the start to severe weather season which typically lasts through the end of May to early June.  The region we live in, known as “Tornado Alley,” becomes the target for some of Mother Nature’s worst disasters.

While the peak of tornado season is May, where 307 occurred in the past ten years, twisters can still form as soon as February.  Seven tornadoes swept through Oklahoma over a ten year period during February.

We may still have our shovels ready in case of a big snow event but it’s also time to prepare ourselves for severe weather season too.

-Danielle Dozier


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