In situ soil moisture coupled with extreme temperatures: A study based on the Oklahoma Mesonet

Trent W. Ford, Steven M. Quiring

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The relationship between the observed (in situ) soil moisture and the percent hot days (%HD) in Oklahoma is examined using quantile regression. Consistent with results from previous modeling studies and observational studies using precipitation deficits as proxy, soil moisture is found to most strongly impact air temperature in the upper quantile of the %HD distribution. The utility of soil moisture for forecasting extreme heat events in Oklahoma is also assessed. Our results show that %HD can be predicted with reasonable skill using soil moisture anomalies from the previous month. These soil moisture-based forecasts of extreme temperature events can be used to support public health and water resource planning and mitigation activities in the Southern Great Plain region of the United States. Key Points In situ-based study shows high impact of soil moisture on extreme temperatures Extreme temperatures predicted with skill using previous month soil moisture Soil moisture forecast of extreme temperatures can aid health and water planning

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4727-4734
Number of pages8
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number13
StatePublished - Jul 16 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Oklahoma
  • extreme temperature forecast
  • quantile regression
  • soil moisture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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