The Alabama Climate Report

Brought to you by the Office of the Alabama

Volume 15, Number 13, May 2024

Alabama experienced a notably active weather pattern throughout May. Significant weather events (hail, high winds, and/or tornadoes) were reported on 15 out of the 31 days. Fortunately, despite the 18 reported tornadoes, there were only 7 injuries and no fatalities.

Temperature-wise, the state was warmer than normal at 3.3°F above the long-term average of 70.7°F. Statewide, Alabama recorded its 11th warmest May. One local note: Mobile recorded its 2nd warmest May on record. The warmest reading of the month was recorded at the Open Pond RAWS station in Conecuh National Forest, reaching 96°F on the 25th. Conversely, during a particularly cold snap from the 10th to the 13th, the Liri RAWS station in DeSoto State Park recorded the coldest temperature of the month at 44°F on the 11th.

Following a drier than normal April, May rebounded with 1.9 inches of above normal rainfall. Most of the state experienced wetter than normal conditions, except for areas around Birmingham and to the west. A COOP station in Calera, AL recorded the driest total of the month at 2.33 inches of rainfall with no missing observations. The southern half of Alabama and parts of the northern Alabama were generally wetter than normal, with the Madison 8.0 N CoCoRaHS station recording the most rainfall of the month at 12.24 inches.

As we conclude the climatological spring (March, April, May), let’s review how Alabama fared this spring. Statewide, it was the 8th warmest spring on record, with an average temperature of 65.4°F, which is 2.5°F warmer than normal. Both Birmingham and Huntsville recorded their 2nd warmest spring on record, surpassed only by 2012. From a precipitation standpoint, this spring was the 32nd wettest on record, with 17.02 inches of precipitation, which is 1.81 inches wetter than normal. In terms of tornado activity, it was a relatively typical spring with 27 reported tornadoes, which is slightly above the climatological spring average of 24. However, what was atypical was that majority of these tornadoes occurred in May and not April which is the climatological peak for tornadoes.

Monthly summaries are provided by Dr. Rob Junod, Lee Ellenburg and Dr. John Christy.

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Distinguished Professor, Atmospheric and Earth Sciences
Director, Earth System Science Center
Alabama State Climatologist
The University of Alabama in Huntsville
Associate State Climatologist
Earth System Science Center
The University of Alabama in Huntsville
Associate State Climatologist
Alabama Office of State Climatology
Earth System Science Center
The University of Alabama in Huntsville