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Statistics from an exceptionally cold month

Last month was the coldest January since 1987.

Figures released by the Meteorological Office at Ronaldsway show the mean daytime maximum temperature was six Celsius, two degress below the long-term average.

On the seventh, thermometers at the airport dipped to minus 5.3 Celsius, the lowest figure in 28 years, and two days later the grass temperature dipped to minus 8.9 C.

With such low temperatures even some salty water in harbours and on beaches turned to ice.

The cold also meant the snow which fell on the morning of January 5 settled right down to beach level and took several days to clear. A brief spell of mild weather then caused the snow to thaw rapidly, which led to problems with flooding and landslips in various parts of the Island.

There were a total of nine days with sleet, snow or hail during the month but, because of the cold, dry air, there was 50 per cent more sunshine than normal, with 75 hours compared to the average of 50.

Wind speeds were significantly below normal and unusually for January no gales were recorded during the month.

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