(Dec. 28, 2018) The top story of the year for 2018 for northern Worcester County did not involve government, politics, individual achievement, notable people, crime, or good works.
The story of this year was rain. Soggy, miserable, soaking, stupid rain. Of the calendar’s 52 weekends, some form of precipitation occurred on 30 of them, according to Wunderground data collected from the Ocean City Municipal Airport.
Some days, it was a drizzle, on other days a deluge, but rain throughout the year added up to 53.17 inches as of Dec. 26, or 11 inches and change above the average 42 inches a year.
In addition, the frequency of wet weekends sank the budgets of the resort’s many weather-dependent tourist venues. May was the worst month of all with 10.56 inches of rain as compared to the historical average of 3.46 inches.
The lost weekends in the run-up to summer put many businesses behind the financial eight-ball coming out of the gate, with hundreds of thousands of dollars lost before summer truly began.
Precipitation totals from January through July, since 2014, show the resort hasn’t been this wet in quite a while.
Average precipitation for the area for the seven-month period is about 25 inches, according to multiple sources. This year, however, Ocean City’s official rain gauge showed 33.22 inches for that stretch.
The driest seven-months in recent years was in 2014, with 14.54 inches of precipitation. Last year saw not quite 24 inches, while 29.7 inches was recorded in 2016.