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South Carolina State Climatology Office
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March 14, 2016 - March 20, 2016


Late afternoon storms on Monday produced hen egg-sized hail (2.0-inch diameter) that bombarded the Pebble Creek Subdivision near Taylors for nearly seven minutes and caused excessive damage to trees. Golf ball-sized hail (1.75-inch diameter) fell near Moore, Duncan and Reidville. The Spartanburg Memorial AP measured 0.67 inches of rain in 20 minutes. Rainfall amounts totaled 1.10 inches at Travelers Rest, 0.90 inches at Chester and 0.70 inches at York. Afternoon temperatures warmed to 83 degrees in Columbia and Beaufort. Most of South Carolina warmed into the 80's on Tuesday. Allendale and Walterboro recorded 86 degrees and 85 degrees was reported at Sumter and Orangeburg. Date record high temperatures were set on Wednesday with 88 degrees at Charleston AP and 86 degrees at Greenville-Spartanburg AP. Other high temperatures on Wednesday included 88 degrees for Shaw AFB and Summerville, 87 degrees for Florence and 86 degrees for Greenville Downtown AP. West winds gusted to 35 mph at Clemson-Oconee AP. At 4:00 p.m., Anderson AP noted 85 degrees with a relative humidity value of just 12 percent. Pine tree pollen counts peaked on Wednesday in Richland County and were described through outdoor night lighting as having the appearance of falling volcanic ash. A boundary of cooler air moved through the state overnight with temperatures at Chesnee plunging 48 degrees from a Wednesday high of 86 degrees to a Thursday morning low of 38 degrees. Thursday's high temperatures made it to 83 degrees at Sandhill and Clarks Hill. The Myrtle Beach International AP 4:00 p.m. observation included a relative humidity value of 14 percent. Friday's early morning thundershowers brought two separate Ridgeland CoCoRaHS volunteer observers 1.02 and 0.96 inches of rain. Cooler, maritime air on Friday resulted in only Johnston and Summerville reaching 80 degrees. On Saturday, overcast skies turned to showers. Laurens reported a high temperature of 74 degrees and Bamberg was the state's only 80-degree report. McEntire ANG AP received 0.30 inches of rain and 0.28 inches was reported at Springfield. The 2016 Vernal Equinox occurred at 12:30 a.m. on Sunday morning with the start of a new spring season.* At 8:55 a.m., the Conway Horry County AP noted heavy rain. Much colder air settled into the state through the day. Winnsboro and the Hartsville AP reported a Sunday high temperature of only 46 degrees. Wrap-around showers mixed with sharply falling temperatures at Caesars Head during the early evening hours to produce a light dusting of snow. At 9:58 p.m., the thermometer reading at Sassafras Mt. had dropped to 32 degrees.

The highest official temperature reported was 90 degrees at Marlboro County Jetport near Bennettsville on March 16. The lowest official temperature reported was 31 degrees at Sassafras Mt. on March 20 at 11:59 p.m. EDT. The heaviest official 24-hour rainfall reported was 1.53 inches at Spartanburg 3SSE ending at 7:00 a.m. on March 15. The state average rainfall for the seven-day period was 0.3 inches. The state average temperature for the seven-day period was nine degrees above the long-term average.

* The highest known "first day of spring" temperature in South Carolina is 91 degrees at Aiken and Batesburg March 21, 1907.


  Weekly Jan 1 Departure
Anderson AP 0.02 7.80 -2.8
Greer AP 0.70 9.55 -1.2
Charlotte, NC AP 0.22 7.18 -2.2
Columbia Metro AP 0.22 7.60 -2.1
Orangeburg AP 0.05 8.37 -1.8
Augusta, GA Bush AP 0.25 6.90 -3.7
Florence AP 0.07 8.29 -0.1
N Myrtle Beach AP 0.23 8.72 -0.9
Charleston AP 0.09 9.14 0.1
Savannah, GA AP 0.18 7.29 -1.6

Weekly rainfall totals ending midnight Sunday.


4-inch depth soil temperature: Columbia 62 degrees.


South Carolina river stages were near to below normal. The Charleston Harbor Ravenel Bridge reported a water temperature of 65 degrees. Springmaid Pier at Myrtle Beach reported a surf water temperature of 60 degrees.

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