Hotter winter anticipated for Windsor, says Setting Canada climatologist

Although January is usually a month of snow and sub-zero temperatures, this year’s forecast will be a different story in Windsor-Essex.

A high of 13 C is expected Tuesday, according to Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), which is well above the average temperature of -0.3 C.

Although Tuesday’s double-digit temperatures are expected to be a one-off for now, warmer temperatures will be the norm for now.

“January looks like it’s going to be warmer than normal,” Dave Phillips, senior climatologist with ECCC, told Windsor Morning host Nav Nanwa. “So a lot of people who love winter recreation, they’re going to have to sit this out for a little while longer.”

Environment Canada has issued a rainfall warning for Tuesday for Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent Counties. Temperatures will also reach double-digits that day. (Dale Molnar/CBC)

Tuesday is also expected to bring heavy rain, with ECCC issuing a rainfall warning for Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent. Anywhere from 20 to 45 millimeters of rain is expected to fall and localized flooding in low-lying areas may occur, according to the warning.

Phillips said that frozen ground will make it difficult to absorb the water.

“Underneath that soft ground at the top, there is still some frost below that,” he said. “The snow has melted, but the ground is saturated. In a certain area, it could be more of a drenching. [The water] can’t really run off, can’t percolate into the ground.

“The precipitation of that is short lived in terms of intensity, but nevertheless it’s there.”

Localized flooding could occur on Tuesday as Environment Canada has issued a rainfall warning for Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent. Frozen ground conditions mean that the water may not be easily absorbed by the ground. (Tony Smyth/CBC)

A rainfall warning for Windsor-Essex was also issued on Friday. According to data collected by the Water Survey of Canada, water levels increased at the rivers in the county where data is collected.

The Ruscom River saw an increase of 0.4 meters in water levels from Dec. 29 to 31, which is an increase of about 11.7 per cent. In the same timeframe, water levels at the Little River increased by 0.4 metres, which is an increase of about 37 per cent.

Canard River saw an increase of 0.2 meters in water levels from Dec. 29 to Jan. 2, an 11 per cent increase.

Phillips said that temperatures for February and March will also be warmer than normal.

“La Nina is dead in the water,” he said. “It’s not having the effect that it would have. My sense is that there will still be some winter ahead, but it won’t be too long.”

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