RECENT LOCATIONS

Close
Add a location
Edit your saved locations

#6- U.S. record drought, wildfires


Staff writers
December 25, 2012 — The Weather Network counts down the 10 biggest weather stories of 2012. #6- U.S. record drought, wildfires.


Widespread wildfires forced more than 34,000 people from their homes in June and July
Widespread wildfires forced more than 34,000 people from their homes in June and July

Be sure to tune into The Weather Network on TV at 8 pm ET on December 26 to find out what landed in the #5 spot. 

2012 was a year of weather milestones in the United States and heat figured in prominently. 

July was the hottest month on record for the lower 48 states -- and 2012 the hottest year.

It was a nightmare for farmers. Drought plagued more 63 per cent of the continental U.S. last summer, the most widespread in more than 50 years.

The dry weather destroyed corn, soybeans and other crops in the West and Midwest. Cattle feed also took a major hit. Many ranchers were forced to sell their livestock because there was no hay to feed their animals. 

The drought's impact went beyond farming. Water levels dropped dramatically on major waterways like the Ohio and Mississippi rivers. Shipping companies had to reduce their loads or risk grounding their vessels. 

And then there were the wildfires. 

The state of Colorado saw a very dry Winter, and a summer with temperatures topping 37 degrees. That set the stage for widespread wildfires that forced more than 34,000 people from their homes in June and July. 

The Waldo Canyon Fire, was the most notable. It started on June 23rd and wasn't contained until July 8th. 

Flames destroyed more than 350 homes, making it the most destructive fire in the state's history.

Sign in or Sign up to submit a comment.




Comments





Take your weather with you, no matter where you go.

Get instant forecasts and alerts, right on your computer.

  • RSS & Data
Add weather updates to your website or RSS reader.