2011 now the second wettest year on record
Updated: December 27, 2011 3:25PM
Chicago experienced a record-setting blizzard this year, a snowless Christmas and now, it’s broken the record for precipitation — eclipsing 1983 as the second wettest year on record.
As of 5 a.m. Tuesday, Chicago stood at 49.41 inches of precipitation with the 0.06 that fell since midnight, the National Weather Service said.
The year now stands at only 1.45 inches behind 2008. More rain and perhaps snow are forecast for the metropolitan area, but the forecast through the end of the year shows it’s unlikely we’ll see the 1.45 inches of precipitation needed to break 2008’s record, according to the weather service.
The following are the five wettest years in Chicago: 2008 with 50.86 inches; 2011 with 49.41 as of 5 a.m.; 1983 at 49.35; 1970 at 46.09 and 1954 with 45.92.
February’s major blizzard, an unusually wet May and record-breaking rainfall July 23 all helped put 2011 into the second-to-top spot, according to the weather service.
The average annual precipitation total for Chicago stands at 36.89 inches, according to the Illinois State Climatology office.
Tuesday will be breezy with a high near 39 before dropping to a low around 24 degrees tonight, according to the weather service.
— Sun-Times Media