December brought double normal level of rain

Most rain on record at Knock Airport while Co Cork experienced three times average

December was, unsurprisingly, the wettest month in 2015 with most stations in the west, south and midlands recording their worst conditions for between six and 13 years. File photograph: Aidan Crawley

December was, unsurprisingly, the wettest month in 2015 with most stations in the west, south and midlands recording their worst conditions for between six and 13 years. File photograph: Aidan Crawley

 

Virtually every part of Ireland experienced double or triple the level of rainfall normally experienced in December.

With much of the country still battling flood waters and their aftermath, statistics released by Met Éireann on Tuesday revealed the severity of last month’s conditions and the overall weather picture for 2015.

Almost every recording station logged rainfall well above long-term averages in December while the wettest conditions were found in Co Cork with levels at more than three times normal rates.

It was, unsurprisingly, the wettest month in 2015 with most stations in the west, south and midlands recording their worst conditions for between six and 13 years.

Mayo set the bar. Newport had its highest annual rainfall since it began measuring in 1960 while conditions at Knock Airport too were the worst since it opened almost 30 years ago.

Malin Head in Co Donegal reported an annual total fall of 1,484mm, the wettest year since records began in 1885.

The same station held the record for the highest daily rate of rainfall at 80.7mm during Storm Desmond on December 5th.

Dark

If things were damp in Mayo, they were also dark. Sunshine totals for 2015 were lowest at Knock Airport with an annual total of 981 hours, or 2.7 hours a day. The highest recorded level was at Dublin Airport and Casement Aerodrome with 15.7 hours on June 10th.

It may have been very wet but December, at least, was not all that cold. Mean temperatures were well above long-term averages for the month. The Phoenix Park in Dublin experienced its warmest December on record (3.6 degrees above average) while temperatures at Valentia Observatory in Co Kerry equalled their best of 1893 at 2.3 degrees above average.

While December reported the warmest conditions compared with monthly averages, July was the most disappointing with average temperatures two degrees lower.

Overall, Met Éireann dubbed 2015 “wet, windy and slightly cool in many places”.