Flooded Westholme Road, above. (Photo by Daniel James Henry). Right, cartoonist Rob Kernachan puts his clever touch on the stormy situation.

Chemainus experiences 24-hour rainfall record

Just short of 100 mm in period from 4 a.m. Jan. 31 to 4 a.m. Feb. 1, but storm surpasses that

The Jan. 31 rainstorm that lasted into the early-morning hours of Feb. 1 dropped more than 100 millimetres of rain on the Chemainus Valley.

Chris Carss, a volunteer weather observer/recorder for Environment Canada in Chemainus, noted a 24-hour reading of 99.1 mm for the 24-hour period from 4 a.m. Jan. 31 to 4 a.m. Feb. 1, but the rainfall continued for a short time after his 4 a.m. observation Feb. 1 and brought another 2.4 mm for a final total of 101.5 mm in 24.5 hours.

“So the official new 24-hour record is just under 100 mm, but the total for the storm was just over that benchmark amount,” Carss noted.

He declared January 2020 a wild month in the Chemainus Valley, even by winter standards for the West Coast.

“It started off unseasonably mild and spring-like on New Year’s Day,” Carss elaborated. “After that, temperatures cooled off to more seasonal values with rain most days until some heavy snowstorms arrived near the middle of the month with temperatures well below freezing for three days in a row. For the second half of the month, the temperature regime returned to near-normal for about a week with rain nearly every day.

“January ended with a mirror-image return to above normal values as a ‘pineapple express’ event hit the Chemainus Valley, bringing record rainfall amounts falling on the last evening of the month, extending into the wee small hours of February 1 accompanied by gale force wind causing (surprise!) power failures and flooding in many areas of the Valley.”

Total precipitation for January was a whopping 546.6 mm. The normal is just 252.1.

The amount broke down to 492.8 mm of rain (normal 231.1) and snowfall of 53.8 centimetres (normal 21.0 cm).

There were a total of just three sunny or partly sunny days in January. The normal is seven.

All but one of 28 mostly cloudy days had precipitation.

The mean daily maximum temperature for January was right on the normal of 6.8 C. The mean daily minimum temperature was 2.5 C, just slightly above the normal of 2.3C.

The extreme maximum temperature of 13 C occurred on New Year’s Day. The extreme minimum for the month was -5.5 C on Jan. 14.

All Keith Rush could say about January statistics taken at his Thetis Island home was ‘Wow!’

Total rainfall there was 379.7 mm, compared to 162.8 mm in January of last year and the January average of 172.0 mm.

“A record January,” noted Rush, beating 2018 which had 306.9 mm.

“So far, early February continues to be volatile with rapidly changing temperatures and weather conditions, but nothing as violent as in January,” added Carss. “It is almost unheard of for such extreme weather as we had in January to repeat equally for a second month in a row, so the statistical probability of an equally stormy February is low for the time being.

“Our second month of the year has traditionally marked the beginning of our annual transition to spring, but the last few years haven’t followed that game plan very well. However, it’s looking possible for this year if the winter storms of January have finally spent their force.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Saskia and Darrel deliver high volume of Canadian content

Songs with great storylines to be featured in Chemainus performance

Inked magazine cover hopeful receiving strong local voting support

Chemainus Secondary grad and Ladysmith resident a strong contender for the top prize

Make sure to sign up for baseball season

The weather’s just starting to feel like more regular outdoor pursuits are near

Dragon boaters being sought for a new team in Ladysmith

Men and women just need to bring along their enthusiasm and dedication

Police encourage the public to register their bicycles

It helps to have pictures, make and model in the recovery process from thefts

VIDEO: Feds warned agricultural sector near ‘tipping point’ due to blockades

Canadian Federation of Agriculture points to lack of propane and feed due to Coastal GasLink dispute

B.C. terminates contract with hospice society refusing assisted death

Delta Hospice Society loses hospital service fund of $1.5 million

Child in hospital following fatal crash that killed father, sibling on B.C. highway

The single vehicle crash occured near Kamloops on Highway 5A

‘Die!’: Vernon councillor mailed death threat

This story contains information that might be sensitive to some readers

Hidden message connects Castlegar homeowners decades apart

The Rodgers family was surprised when a message fell out of the walls as they were renovating

Two B.C. men plead guilty to bus-terminal assault of man with autism in Ontario

Parmvir Chahil and Jaspaul Uppal due to be sentenced in June for aggravated assault

B.C. Liberals call for assistance on soaring strata insurance rates

NDP’s Carole James says problem is across the country

‘Intemperate, insulting’: B.C. teacher reprimanded for online comments about religion

John William Yetman made the comments in response to a Facebook invitation to Open Mosque Day B.C.

Most Read