Autumn 2021 was a record-breaking season for Red Deer — its driest on record.
Kyle Fougere, meteorologist with Environment and Climate Change Canada, said average precipitation for September, October and November is 87.3 mm for the city, but only 11.7 mm fell this year.
“That’s only 13 per cent. That was the driest fall that we’ve had on record with 104 years of data,” Fougere said.
Last month was the third driest November with only .6 mm of precipitation.
In December, Red Deer averages 13.5 cm of snow, 18.6 in January, and 14.5 in February. The snowiest month is usually March with 20.4.
Fougere said Red Deer has a chance of flurries through the weekend, with more expected later in the week, so it will be a white Christmas. But with the snow comes a drop in temperature.
“That’s going to be the story over the weekend. We’ve got a really cold arctic air mass approaching Alberta. It originated in Siberia and it’s made its way around the Arctic. Now it’s going to slide into Alberta and sit in place for next week.”
He said there’s the potential to see the temperature drop into the -40s in central Alberta, while the low for Red Deer isn’t quite extreme.
Red Deer’s forecast predicts the temperature will fall to -26 C Friday night and -34 C by Sunday night. Daytime temperatures will hold steady at about -25 C during the first part of the week.
“It’s really important if people do have travel plans that they pay attention to the weather and the extreme cold warnings that could be in place,” Fougere said.
He said motorists should have vehicle emergency kits that include warm blankets and clothes, and a candle just in case. Anyone spending time outside should dress in lots of layers with a windproof outer layer, and take frequent breaks if possible.
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