Rename the "Red Stick" the "Wet Stick"
After another dousing Tuesday night, Baton Rouge has cracked the top 10 for wettest years in city history—with more than a month to go.
Since records began at Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport in 1930, only nine years found more rain. 2015 is currently in the tenth spot with 71 inches for the year. Remarkably, 21 inches have fallen in just the last month, accounting for a third of the year’s rain.
If you cut off the records at November 19 only two years have been wetter, 1991 and 1989.
While just over eight inches would jolt 2015 into second place, achieving the top spot seems unlikely even during this crazy, wet fall. In 1989 the city picked up 88.35 inches of rain. That year May and June combined for over 37 inches of rain, with more than nine inches falling in late June due to Tropical Storm Allison.
While tenth place may seem like a pedestrian position on the record charts, leaving the capital city’s limits opens a whole new book. On a list of the top 100 cities by population, only one is home to a gauge that has collected more rainfall this year: Houston, Texas. The bucket at Hobby Airport has measured 73.22 inches of rain thus far in 2015, making it the only National Weather Service COOP station in a city of more than 215,000 people to record more than Metro Airport in Baton Rouge. Neighboring New Orleans followed by Tampa and Dallas round out the top 5.
Indeed, the Red Stick may be extra wet this year, but Baton Rouge has been near the top of the wettest cities list in many years. It's less surprising for a pair of Louisiana cities to make the list, when you consider the fact that Louisiana is typically the wettest state in the lower 48. As noted by Louisiana State Climatologist Dr. Barry Keim, the state has an annual average of 60.1 inches of rain. Mississippi is the second wettest with 59.2 inches.
Don’t tell tourism. However, it may be time to get a new nickname!
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