Second Wettest October on Record, Illinois State Water Survey

ISWS Press Release

For Immediate Release November 2, 2009
Second Wettest October on Record
Jim Angel - (217) 333-0729,
Lisa Sheppard - (217) 244-7270,

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – Based on preliminary data in Illinois, the statewide average rainfall was 8.9 inches, 6.0 inches above normal. This is the second wettest October on record for the state based on data going back to 1895. It almost beat the wettest October on record, 9.2 inches set in 1941, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (

Rainfall was heaviest in southern Illinois with many places reporting 8 to 12 inches for the month. A few standout reports included record-setting amounts of 13.98 inches at Jerseyville, 13.63 inches at Mt. Olive, and 13.31 inches at Riverton. Decatur and Bloomington/Normal set their all-time records with 10.09 and 10.18 inches, respectively.

While not record-setting, the following locations reported an exceptionally wet October. Rockford reported their fifth wettest October on record with 5.94 inches, while Chicago reported their ninth wettest with 6.04 inches. Champaign, Peoria, and Springfield reported their second wettest October on record with 8.79, 7.95, and 11.32 inches, respectively. Carbondale reported its third wettest with 10.01 inches.

Temperatures across Illinois averaged 49.8 degrees, 4.8 degrees below normal. Most locations reported a freezing temperature (32 degrees or less) for the month, signaling the end of the growing season. Elizabeth was the cold spot in the state with a low of 23 degrees on October 11.

"October was a gloomy month, especially in northern Illinois. Chicago reported two sunny days, and Rockford only one. Downstate was a little better with eight sunny days reported in Peoria and Champaign, nine in Springfield, and 14 in Carbondale," concludes Angel.

The Illinois State Water Survey at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign under the Institute of Natural Resource Sustainability is the primary agency in Illinois concerned with water and atmospheric resources.

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