Author Topic: NZ weather summary December 1956  (Read 1778 times)

Offline Rwood

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NZ weather summary December 1956
« on: May 02, 2018, 09:39:03 AM »
December 1956: A month of unsettled weather. Shearing and haymaking were further delayed after holdups in November. Fruit crops in the Auckland province have been adversely affected by excessive rain in previous seasons. A small local tornado caused some damage in western suburbs of Auckland on the 12th.

Rainfall: Rainfall was above normal except in the southern part of the Wellington province and about Whangarei. It was up to double the average in eastern districts from Castlepoint to Tokomaru Bay and also in the Wanganui-Rangitikei-Manawatu area. In the South Island it was wetter than usual in most eastern districts north of Dunedin and also in Central Otago. Thunderstorms with hail were widespread in eastern districts on the 1st-2nd and again on the 23rd. Crop damage occurred on both occasions, especially in North Canterbury on the 23rd, with hailstones reported to be 2” across.

Temperatures: Temperatures were more than 1F above normal in coastal districts of Southland, Otago and Westland, also about Cook Strait and in the Napier-Whakatane-Gisborne area. Snow fell on the high country of Southland and Otago on the 1st.

Sunshine: Except in western and northern areas of the North Island, sunshine was below normal. As in the previous month, the deficiency was greatest in Central Otago, amounting to 40 hours.

[Some totals: Te Hapua 233, Kaitaia 251, Kerikeri 256, Whangarei 244, Auckland 265, Tauranga 248, Taupo 227, Hamilton 228, New Plymouth 220, Masterton 207, Gisborne 239, Napier 229, Paraparaumu 212, Ohakea 239, Palmerston Nth 193, Levin 187, Wellington 216, Wanganui 241, Westport 171, Hokitika 182, Greymouth 163, Haast 141, Nelson 215, Blenheim 232, Grassmere 231, Mt Cook 140, Methven 217, Christchurch 201, Tekapo 233, Timaru 168, Waimate 151, Omarama 191, Dunedin 162, Queenstown 196, Alexandra 183, Invercargill 160, Campbell Is 119].

Sources: NZ Met. Misc. pub. 107 (Climatological table, NZ Gazette) and NZ Met. Misc. pub. 109 (Meteorological Observations) - additional comments by the poster.



Offline Rwood

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Re: NZ weather summary December 1956
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2018, 10:06:53 AM »
Footnote: NZ Met Service's summary for 1956 included the following statement: "1956 was an exceptional year in the North Island, being in fact the wettest in seventy years of records (equal with 1893), the warmest in sixty years (equal with 1916) and the cloudiest in thirty years (equal with 1953)."

The wettest-year record probably still holds. For warmth, several years have now surpassed 1956 - 1971, 1989, 1998, 1999, 2005, 2013, 2016 and 2017 - 2016 being the warmest. The sunshine comment is less reliable - not a lot of recording sites by comparison with temperature and rainfall, and not much trustworthy data prior to about 1930 - consistency checking didn't start until 1935. For post-1935 records, 1992 for the North Island (Pinatubo-affected) looks like its cloudiest year; 1983 for the South Island.


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