Edmonton has a fairly dry climate. On average, it receives 476. 9 millimetres (18. 78 in) of precipitation, of which 365. 7 millimetres (14. 40 in) is rain and 111. 2 millimetres (4. 38 in) is the melt from 123. 5 centimetres (48. 6 in) of snowfall per annum. Precipitation is heaviest in the late spring, summer, and early autumn. The wettest month is July, while the driest months are February, March, October, and November. In July the mean precipitation is 91. 7 mm (3. 61 in). Dry spells are not uncommon and may occur at any time of the year. Extremes do occur, such as the 114 mm (4. 49 in) of rainfall that fell on July 31, 1953. Summer thunderstorms can be frequent and occasionally severe enough to produce large hail, damaging winds, funnel clouds, and occasionally tornadoes. Twelve tornadoes had been recorded in Edmonton between 1890 and 1989, and eight since 1990. A F4 tornado that struck Edmonton on July 31, 1987, killing 27, was unusual in many respects, including severity, duration, damage, and casualties. It is commonly referred to as Black Friday due both to its aberrant characteristics and the emotional shock it generated. Then-mayor Laurence Decore cited the community's response to the tornado as evidence that Edmonton was a "city of champions," which later became an unofficial slogan of the city.
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