Winter rainfall slightly below average

If you think Victoria has been subjected to an unusually high level of rainfall this winter, you’re mistaken.

If you think Victoria has been subjected to an unusually high level of rainfall this winter, you’re mistaken.

The actual measured precipitation is slightly below average for the October 2015 to mid-March period, but several high intensity episodes of precipitation managed to flood basements and otherwise overwhelm storm water run-off systems.

“It’s due to something called atmospheric river events,” said University of Victoria Associate Professor David Atkinson. He said that veritable rivers of atmospheric moisture are picked up over the equator due to the high energy (of sunshine) over those regions. This prompts the storage of very moist air, which, if drawn toward the North American landmass by a combination of strong pressure systems, has the effect of causing substantial, prolonged rainfall events.

“I have one colleague who likens it to turning a fire hose on the West Coast,” said Atkinson.

According to Atkinson, another reason for the high intensity rainstorms this year has been the shifting of pressure systems along the coast, which has drawn storm moisture in from pressure systems formed over the ocean.

“We generally get the remnants of storms that form around Alaska. That results in lower intensity rainfall events of longer duration,” he said. “But this year we’ve seen storm systems move in from the Pacific and even down the California coast.”

Victoria’s 705 mm of annual rainfall is about half of what Vancouver receives every year.


Just Posted

Victoria requests cruise ship visit cap while seeking limit on ship emissions

Mayor says motion is not meant to curtail current visits or limit local cruise industry expansion

Island Health warns of whooping cough at Esquimalt’s Macaulay Elementary

Island Health is urging parents to watch out for signs, and to keep immunizations updated

Council tags two more Oak Bay homes for bylaw infringement

Monterey homeowner covers front yard in gravel and stone

Pacific FC parts ways with head coach before season’s end

Club says the parting is mutual and takes effect immediately

Scheer, Trudeau, Singh haggle over potential minority government outcome

If you believe the polls, it appears the Liberals and Conservatives are neck-and-neck

POLL: Do you think the day of the federal election should be a statutory holiday?

Increasing voter turnout has long been a goal of officials across the… Continue reading

Kawhi Leonard, former Toronto Raptor, welcomed back to Vancouver at pre-season game

Fans go wild at pre-season game between L.A. Clippers and Dallas Mavericks at Rogers Arena

Greens and NDP go head to head on West Coast; Scheer takes fight to Bernier

Trudeau turns focus to key ridings outside Toronto after two days in Quebec

Canucks beat Stanley Cup champs 4-3 in a shootout

Leivo nets winner, Vancouver dumps St. Louis for fourth straight win

Campbell River homicide suspects arrested in Vancouver

Two men remain in custody, but have not been charged

‘The more you test, the more you find’: Beef recalls a sign of success, experts say

Despite appearances, experts say a recent rise in major recalls is not a sign of food supply problems

Scholars say religious vaccine objections can’t be traced to Biblical sources

Vaccinations are a requirement to attend class in Ontario and New Brunswick, while B.C. launched a demand this fall

ELECTION 2019: How would the major parties address Canada’s housing crisis?

Promises include speculation taxes, more affordable housing, and declaring housing a human right

Most Read