Tuesday, 15 January 2002: 2:30 PM
The Impact of a Major Ice Storm on the Operations of the Oklahoma Mesonet
A major ice storm occurred across much of central and eastern Oklahoma on 25-26 December 2000. Ice accumulations as thick as three inches were reported in some areas. For 11 days, the event caused both data quality and data collection problems. The wind sensors at 83 of the Mesonet's 115 stations were frozen in place for extended periods. The coating of ice also compromised the air temperature, solar radiation, and pressure data at some stations. The ice accumulation on antennas caused some radio communications to fail. Likewise, ice on solar panels and loss of AC power to repeaters and bases inhibited data collection. Finally, treacherous roads prevented technicians from performing site maintenance. This manuscript describes these problems and the impact they had on the operations of the Mesonet.