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Rainfall above average for 2018

December 15, 2018

Thus far, 2018 has been a particularly wet year for Somerset County.

National Weather Service observer A.J. Jarosz said that in Glencoe he’s measured 60.73 inches of rain. Jarosz said that the average is about 40 inches, with 46.14 measured in 2017, 35.34 in 2016, 37.33 in 2015 and 37.44 in 2014.

“Just ask the farmers all around the country,” he said with a laugh when asked if this year’s figure is significant.

He said that he gardens annually and this year was the worst for his tomato crops.

“I’ve been gardening a long time, and I’ve never seen anything like it,” he said of the rain. “The only good thing is the streams. The trout were pretty full year-round.”

In Somerset, weather service observer Steve Shaulis had a similar number to report.

Shaulis said that so far the area is about 18 1/2 to 19 inches above normal. He did not have exact figures with him when called Friday evening.

“It’s very significant,” he said. “As long as I’ve been doing it — for almost 25 years — I’ve never seen precipitation that far ahead on a yearly total.”

When asked for the cause of the heavy precipitation, Jarosz pointed to global warming.

“All you got to do is just turn on the TV and see what’s going on around the country. It’s just not normal,” he said. “It used to be you have a nice, calm rain. Not anymore.”

Shaulis said he doesn’t know for sure, but global warming could be a factor.

He said that the year’s total should keep going up with rain in the forecast.

“What we’ll end up with total tomorrow, who knows,” he said. “I’ll find out at 8 o’clock in the morning when I go out to check.”

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