We’re not quite counting our chickens yet, Long Island, but it appears the worst may be behind us—at least we can only hope it is.

If Thursday’s winter storm was indeed Old Man Winter’s last hurrah then we’ll gladly put away those over-utilized shovels and box up the salt and sand—all the while letting out a triumphant cheer, the likes of which we haven’t uttered in what seems like ages.

As we look ahead to next week’s glorious forecast—sunny skies and temperatures in the 40s (!!) for most of the week—we do so with a bit of trepidation, knowing full well that at any moment Mother Nature can shatter all of our hopes and dreams and unleash copious amounts of snow and brutally cold temperatures on us—something we’ve unfortunately become accustomed to in recent weeks.

Sure, this hellish winter may not officially be over, but we feel like it’s our duty to conduct a sort-of post-mortem on Winter 2015.

Long Islanders don’t need statistics to back up their point that this winter has been especially unbearable, but we’ll provide some talking points anyway.

According to National Weather Service’s Upton office, February was the coldest month on record for Long Island (temperature readings are taken at Long Island MacArthur Airport), going back to 1984, when the agency officially began to record data. The average temperature in February was a skin-piercing 21.6 degrees.

February’s stunning temperatures are even more mind blowing when you consider temperature readings at Central Park, where records date back to 1869. Central Park posted an average daily temperature of 23.9, making it the third coldest February over the 146-year period that records have been kept, and the ninth coldest month overall. The average temperature of 24.6 captured at John F. Kennedy International Airport (records date back to 1948) made it the coldest February on record, and second coldest month overall.

Now, let’s talk about the dreaded snow.

For the season, the weather service measured 56.6 inches of snow at MacArthur Airport, more than double the historic seasonal average of 24.8 inches. With our luck this year, that number may increase. The weather service’s “snowfall season” runs from November through April.

The most recent storm to hit LI dumped upwards of 8 inches on the Island, a reminder that although spring is only days away, anything is possible.

Here’s the good news:

Long Island Weather
National Weather Service forecast through Wednesday. (Photo credit: National Weather Service)

You’re not hallucinating, folks. The reprieve we’ve all been waiting for is upon us. Let’s just hope it stays that way.

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Rashed Mian has been covering local news for the Long Island Press since 2011. He graduated from Hofstra University in 2010 where he studied print journalism. Rashed, the staff's multimedia reporter, covers daily news for the web, shoots/edits feature videos and writes about civil liberties. He loves Afghan food and sports. Rashed is also a caffeine freak. Email: rmian@longislandpress.com. Twitter: rashedmian