A nice weekend of weather though onshore northeast winds will still be a little cool Sat. Winds become more easterly Sun. so temps. will be 5-8 degrees higher than Saturday's 60s to near 70. Even warmer Mon. ahead of a cold front with highs nearing 80 degrees. The front will bring some rain Mon. night/Tue. The onshore flow this weekend will help cause a moderate to high rip current risk at our beaches with an east/northeast swell.
Remember to set your clock ahead 1 hour Sat. night/early Sun.
From the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission:
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Do you have working smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms in your home? If not, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) urges you to install them. Smoke and CO alarms add an important layer of safety to your home.
* There are more than 366,000 home fires every year and more than 2,300 people die in them, according to CPSC’s latest Residential Fire Loss Estimates report -- click here.
* If you do have smoke alarms, make sure they are working properly and have fresh batteries. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), two-thirds of fire deaths occur in homes without working smoke alarms.
* When changing clocks ahead one hour for Daylight Saving Time this weekend, replace the batteries in alarms. According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Housing Survey for 2011, only three out of four homes reported they changed the batteries in their smoke alarms in the last six months. Batteries need to be replaced in alarms every year. In addition, CPSC recommends that consumers test their alarms every month to make sure they are working.
* Smoke alarms should be placed on every level of the home, inside each bedroom, and outside sleeping areas.
* While about 95 percent of U.S. homes report having at least one working smoke alarm, only 42 percent report having a working CO alarm, based on 2011 U.S. Census Bureau data. CO alarms can alert you and your family to dangerous levels of carbon monoxide inside your home.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 500 people die each year in the U.S. from unintentional, non-fire related CO poisoning. This figure includes incidents involving automobiles left idling in a home’s garage, which does not fall under CPSC’s jurisdiction. Each year from 2007 to 2009, there were nearly 170 deaths involving consumer products under CPSC’s jurisdiction, including portable generators and home heating systems.
* Carbon monoxide is called the invisible killer, because you cannot see or smell it. This poisonous gas can come from a variety of sources and quickly incapacitate and kill its victims.
* If you do not have CO alarms, get them. CO alarms should be installed on every level of the home and outside sleeping areas. Like smoke alarms, CO alarms need fresh batteries every year. They should be tested once a month to make sure they are working.
* Combination smoke and CO alarms are also available all in one unit.
And from the St. Johns River Water Management District:
PALATKA, Fla., March 6, 2013 — With springtime planting under way and dry conditions forecast for spring and summer in north and east-central Florida, year-round water conservation is one of the most important strategies to help meet Florida’s water supply needs now and in the future.
Watering restrictions are in place throughout the year within the St. Johns River Water Management District’s 18-county region to ensure the efficient use of water for lawn and landscape irrigation.
Coinciding with the return to daylight saving time on March 10, landscape irrigation is allowed up to two days a week before 10 a.m. or after 4 p.m. Landscape irrigation is limited to the following days:
o Wednesday and Saturday for residential landscape irrigation at addresses that end in an odd number or have no address
o Thursday and Sunday for residential landscape irrigation at addresses that end in an even number
o Tuesday and Friday for nonresidential landscape irrigation
In addition, irrigation is limited to ¾ inch of water per irrigation zone and to no more than one hour per irrigation zone on each day that irrigation occurs.
The restrictions apply to water withdrawn from ground or surface water, from a private well or pump, or from a public or private water utility. Some exceptions -- click here -- apply, such as the use of water from a reclaimed water supply, which is allowed any time except when a local government restricts the use of reclaimed water.
Landscape irrigation is limited to one day a week during Eastern Standard Time, which resumes the first Sunday in November.
Currently, rainfall averages across the region vary widely — Volusia County is more than 11 inches below normal rainfall for the past 12 months, while Baker County is 12.5 inches above normal rainfall for the same period.
Regardless of temporary conditions, watering wisely year-round promotes healthier lawns and landscapes and can save thousands of gallons of water per month, as well as saving homeowners money. To help homeowners save water, the District’s online plant database -- click here -- provides a comprehensive and searchable listing of plants most suitable for a variety of growing conditions. Inside the home, fixing leaks and replacing older high-water-use plumbing fixtures with newer water-saving ones can save significant amounts of water.
The District also focuses on year-round conservation by requiring all permit holders to use water efficiently, encouraging the use of reclaimed water and storm water to conserve potable water.
Additional details about the watering restrictions are available at floridaswater.com/wateringrestrictions.
Earth Gauge: National Severe Weather Preparedness Week
Are you ready for the kinds of severe weather that could impact the area where you live? National Severe Weather Preparedness Week takes place from March 3-9, 2013. This is a great time for you and your family to “Be a Force of Nature” by learning the importance of planning for severe weather events and practicing how and where to take shelter before severe weather strikes.
Viewer Tip: In 2012, the United States experienced ten hurricanes, 936 reported tornadoes, numerous devastating wildfires and many other natural disasters. Some storms, such as tornadoes, can strike quickly and without warning. Being prepared can save lives. Visit NOAA’s Weather-Ready Nation website for severe weather preparedness tips and resources to encourage your social network to prepare by texting, tweeting or posting a Facebook status update.
For state-by-state severe weather preparedness information visit Ready.gov.
(Sources: NOAA, “Weather-Ready Nation,”; FEMA)
Climate Fact: Jet Stream Secrets
Link: ** here ** (Video available)
Jet streams are the air traffic controllers of Earth’s weather. These fast-moving “rivers of air” meander through the atmosphere’s landscape, pushing around mountains and valleys of high and low pressure. The jet stream’s position can be a great clue for predicting some types of extreme weather. An international team of scientists showed that when the average position of the Polar Jet falls below 44°N in winter months, the chances of an extreme cold snap nearly double for the Mountain West and triple across Europe. And these odds remain in place for nine days – even if the jet stream moves! Even more amazingly, these odds quadruple in Europe for the most severe, record-breaking cold snaps that represent the coldest one percent of all recorded temperatures from 1957 to 2001. However, when the Polar Jet inches northward between 44°N and 53°N, the odds of a European cold snap actually decrease and the U.S. remains unaffected. These jet stream secrets could be strong, medium-range forecasting tools for meteorologists since these results are derived from almost 50 years of observational data. But climatologists can use these results as well. As our climate changes, the zonal mean Polar Jet is expected to shift northward, and that could reduce the frequency of extreme cold snaps across Europe and Greenland. That could be good news for ice since the southerly Polar Jet position (below 44°N) greatly increases the chance of very mild temperatures in Greenland.
(Source: Mahlstein, I., O. Martius, C. Chevalier, and D. Ginsbourger, 2012. “Changes in the odds of extreme events in the Atlantic basin depending on the position of the extratropical jet.” Geophysical Research Letters, 39:L22805, doi:10.1029/2012GL053993)
Climate in the News: “Early Warning System Provides Four-Month Forecast of Malaria Epidemics in Northwest India” – ScienceDaily, March 3, 2013 - Sea surface temperatures in the tropical South Atlantic Ocean can be used to accurately forecast malaria epidemics thousands of miles away in northwestern India.
Have a great & safe weekend!