Thunderstorms, a blizzard and strong wind top the list of Michigan weather events on this day in history. From the National Weather Service and Storm Prediction Center (SPC) archives here are the events that happened on January 2.
1876 - Record highs are set for the third day in a row at Lansing and Detroit as the temperature reaches 62° at both locations.
1999 - A blizzard hit Michigan and continued into the early morning hours of the 3rd. In West Michigan, the heavy snow and high winds shut down travel for the next several days. For the two-day storm, Grand Rapids receives 15.5 inches and in the Upper Peninsula, Marquette observes 28.2 inches. Detroit Metro Airport received 11.3 inches, Flint had 8.5 inches and Tri Cities Airport in Freeland received 13.2 inches. Between 10 and 15 inches of snow fell over many areas south of M-59, and between 5 to 13 inches across the Saginaw Valley and Thumb regions.
2000 - A winter storm moved northeast from Kansas, across Lake Michigan, and into Quebec, bringing heavy snow to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Snowfall totals were 9.6 inches in Negaunee, 10 inches in Escanaba, 10.5 in Iron Mountain, 11.0 in Munising, 11.5 inches in Melstrand, Newberry and Kingsford, 12.0 inches in Gwinn and Grand Marais, 12.7 inches at Pine Stump Junction, 14.0 inches in Two Heart, and 16.0 inches in Manistique. 10 to 12 inches of snow had fallen over western Chippewa county and extreme northwestern Mackinac County.
2005 - A low pressure system moved northeast from the central plains, crossing Lower Michigan during the morning hours. Meanwhile, cold high pressure was to the northeast, providing a chilly east wind to the area. Freezing rain broke out late in the evening of New Year’s Day, and continued into the early morning hours, before gradually switching to rain from south to north as temperatures slowly warmed above freezing. The southern portion of eastern Upper Michigan (south of M-28) was impacted, with Hessel and St Ignace receiving a quarter to a half inch of ice. Further north, the freezing rain was mixed with sleet and snow, with smaller ice accumulations. The ice accumulated on all surfaces, including roads, making travel almost impossible during the early morning hours. Significant ice accumulation of a quarter inch or more was reported over counties bordering Lake Michigan, while a half inch of ice coated U.S. Highway 2 from Ironwood to Wakefield in Gogebic County. Sleet accumulation of a half inch to an inch occurred across many other locations in west and central Upper Michigan. The ice and sleet accumulations created hazardous travel on area roadways as a few minor accidents were reported by law enforcement officials.
2006 – Severe thunderstorms pummeled the eastern half of the country with 18 reports of tornadoes and several injuries. In Michigan, the town of Paw Paw receives hail 1 inch in diameter. See slideshow on the top of this article for a few weather images from the day. Click this link for a radar animation of the storms.
2012 - A deepening low pressure system lifting northeast of the Upper Great Lakes generated storm force winds over portions of Lake Superior from the evening of the 1st into the early morning of the 2nd. Winds gusted at storm force throughout the period at Granite Island Light in Lake Superior with a peak wind gust of 57 knots at 1 am on the 2nd. Winds gusted above storm force at Rock of Ages Light throughout the period with a peak gust of 53 knots at 4 am on the 2nd.