Fort Wayne, Indiana, is experiencing an unusual weather phenomenon this month: temperatures over 60 degrees Fahrenheit. This is not a common occurrence for the city, which usually has very low temperatures and moderate snowfall in February. According to the National Weather Service, Fort Wayne has only had 19 days with highs of 60 degrees or higher in February since 1912.
How does this compare to the average weather in Fort Wayne?
The average high temperature for February in Fort Wayne is 36 degrees, while the average low is 19 degrees. The city also receives about 2.5 inches of snow and 1.8 inches of rain in February. The warmest February on record was in 1998, when the average temperature was 43.6 degrees. The coldest February was in 1979, when the average temperature was 12.2 degrees.
The current warm spell is expected to last until the end of the week, with highs ranging from 58 to 64 degrees. The forecast also calls for mostly sunny skies and light winds. However, the weather will change dramatically next week, with a cold front bringing rain, snow, and much lower temperatures.
What are the causes and effects of the warm spell?
The warm spell is caused by a high pressure system that is bringing warm air from the south and blocking cold air from the north. This is a rare pattern for this time of the year, when the jet stream usually dips southward and brings cold and stormy weather to the Midwest.
The warm spell has both positive and negative effects for the residents of Fort Wayne. On the positive side, people can enjoy outdoor activities, such as walking, biking, golfing, or gardening, without having to bundle up. Some businesses, such as car washes, ice cream shops, and nurseries, also benefit from the increased demand.
On the negative side, the warm spell can disrupt the natural cycle of plants and animals, which may be confused by the early spring-like conditions. Some plants may bloom prematurely and then be damaged by frost later on. Some animals may emerge from hibernation or migrate earlier than usual and face food shortages or predators. The warm spell can also increase the risk of allergies, asthma, and infections, as pollen, mold, and viruses thrive in the warm and humid air.
How should people prepare for the weather changes?
The National Weather Service advises people to enjoy the warm spell while it lasts, but also to be prepared for the weather changes that will follow. People should check the forecast regularly and plan accordingly for their activities and travel. People should also take care of their health and hygiene, by staying hydrated, wearing sunscreen, washing their hands, and avoiding contact with sick people.
The warm spell in February is a rare and remarkable event for Fort Wayne, but it is not a sign of permanent climate change. The city will soon return to its normal winter weather, with cold, snow, and rain. Until then, people can make the most of the sunny and mild days, while also being cautious and responsible.