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Winter Weather Awareness Week – Climatology October 19, 2010

Posted by mikeheard in Uncategorized.
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CLIMATOLOGY OF MONTANA WINTER STORMS

Every year, winter claims dozens of lives and millions of dollars in damage. Cold weather exposure and automobile accidents are the main causes of winter weather related deaths in Montana. Livestock injuries and deaths can also be quite common during the more hazardous events. The following are some of the causes of both direct and indirect deaths and injuries in Montana as well as causes of damage:

  • Extreme wind chill or extreme cold (within a home and outside)
  • Vehicle accidents
  • Avalanches
  • Leaving a shelter such as a home or vehicle
  • Carbon monoxide poisoning from an incorrectly set up generator or vehicle exhaust obstructed by snow
  • Collapse of structures from heavy snow loading
  • Fallen tree branches due to heavy snow

Below is a look at the number of winter storms, blizzards and ice storms that have affected Montana since the 1999-2000 winter season:

Year Winter Storm Blizzard Ice Storm Fatalities
1999-00 30 1 0 1
2000-01 27 3 2 1
2001-02 30 5 0 0
2002-03 24 1 0 0
2003-04 25 3 0 1
2004-05 23 2 1 0
2005-06 27 4 1 2
2006-07 31 2 0 0
2007-08 29 3 0 2
2008-09 25 7 2 4
2009-10 24 2 2 1
Totals 295 33 8 12
Yearly Average 26.8 3.0 0.7 1.1

Winter Weather

Livestock covered in snow over southeast Montana during the April 4, 2009 Winter Storm

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