Washing out a record; Austin’s 1993 rainfall mark falls; July, September rains push to a new total

Published 11:07 am Thursday, December 29, 2016

The city of Austin had a record rainfall in 2016, setting the new bar at 47.58 inches.

That amount outpaced a 1993 record of 46.01 inches, according to the National Weather Service in La Crosse.

The new record was set after the area experienced the fifth wettest September since 1937, when records began to be kept. According to the NWS, 7.85 inches fell that month.

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It wasn’t the wettest month of the year, however. July was the top month for rain, bringing Austin 9.18 inches, according to meteorologist Clint Aegerter of the NWS.

He said September had three days of large rain events.


Fittingly, 2016 could go out with some type of precipitation, Aegerter said, so the total for the year may  not yet be fully counted.

Both rain and snow are counted in precipitation totals. Snow is measured on a calculation of how much water remains when snow melts.

“We’re could see something (precipitation) but it’s still a little far out to determine” when and how much might fall.

Looking ahead, precipitation records could fall more quickly than not. Research conducted on the topic has grown and gained some media traction in the last few weeks, with some saying rain events in the future could be excessive and increasingly intense.

“While the research is inconclusive, we also want people prepared for flooding” if such the pattern continues to materialize, Aegerter said.