The spring and early summer of 2019 have been memorable for excessive rainfall in Midwest, which has inundated communities and caused historic planting delays.
The total precipitation for Columbus of 28.3 inches is 9.3 inches above normal, with some areas more than a foot of rain beyond the average for the first half of the calendar year.
The other weather story has been an exceptional number of tornadoes in Ohio so far this year. Three tornadoes touched down on Monday — two in southwestern Ohio, and one near Dresden in Muskingum County in the east-central part of the state.
So far in 2019, 45 tornadoes have been recorded in the Buckeye State. This is the second highest number in modern record-keeping for a full year, after 1992 (61 tornadoes).
The 1973 tornado total of 43, it’s worth noting, was probably an undercount, because several tornado families with multiple touchdowns on the evening May 10, 1973, were counted as a single long-track tornado. By today’s standards, a half-dozen or more additional tornadoes would likely have been part of the final tally.
The majority of storms have been EF0/EF1 tornadoes, except for the May 27-28 outbreak of 21 tornadoes in Ohio that included three EF2 storms (111-135 mph), three EF3 tornadoes (136-165 mph), and EF4 (170 mph), which devastated a 19-mile swath in the Brookville-Trotwood-Dayton areas.
One other significant tornado (EF2) in the state earlier this year struck Shelby on April 14 in Richland County.
Every month in 2019 has produced at least one tornado, which is also a record for the period of January-June. Nationally, more than 1,100 preliminary tornado reports have been received by the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma, which equals the average total for a full year.
The combination of a moist tropical flow and unseasonably strong jet stream adding energy to the flow has been responsible for a stormy spring and early summer across the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic states.