Today in Weather History: 30th anniversary of the third coldest low in Barnwell County’s history – in Williston
Today and tomorrow are important weather anniversaries – and yes, both of 30-year anniversaries.
It may have been a spring-like 60°f for a max temp today, but 30 years ago today, that was not the case.
On January 20, 1985, the day started off as a normal winter day temperature-wise – the max was 43°f. However, a Banana Front so powerful was shredding its way through the nation, little did some know what would be in store for the town of Williston, or Barnwell County for that matter.
After sunup, the skies clouded up first.
After that, while the daytime talk shows were on, the divebomb began.
While there was only a trace of snow, it was enough to deal a devastating blow to the temperatures.
When the snow began in Williston, at roughly 11am, the temperature was 40°f. When the front blew the doors off Blue Devil Country the next hour, the temperature dropped all the way down to 18°f at high noon.
At sundown, roughly 17:45 on the day, the temperature fell to 10°f at the Williston School District.
At 20:00, it was down to 8°f.
By 22:30, it was down to 0°f at the School District 29.
Finally, at the very last minute of the day, it was –2°f.
That temperature was briefly the second coldest day in county history, only behind the –3°f set in Blackville on Valentine’s Day 1899. January 20, 1985 would be the last day that the 1899 record would stand as the county’s coldest ever.
At Orangeburg Municipal Airport, the low temperature was 9°f; at the Regional Airport in Augusta, Ga., the low was 8°f; and at Columbia Metropolitan Airport, the low was 5°f. All three were record lows that still stand to this day.
Coming up Wednesday…it’s the 30th anniversary of the coldest day in Barnwell County’s history. We’ll have more on some of the numbers from that day.