Variability of rainfall from tropical cyclones in the eastern USA and its association to the AMO and ENSO
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Tropical cyclone (TC) rainfall along the eastern USA exhibits a high degree of variability with the potential to produce precipitation amounts in excess of 100 % of the annual mean at locations ranging from the immediate coastline to hundreds of kilometers inland. However, the spatiotemporal distribution of TC rainfall variability has not yet been fully characterized for this region, particularly with regard to large-scale climate teleconnections (e.g., El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and Atlantic multidecadal oscillation (AMO)). The objectives of this study are to (1) assess temporal variability and trends in TC rainfall since 1960, and (2) characterize the spatial variability of TC rainfall during varying AMO and ENSO regimes. Kendall tau-b analysis highlighted the presence of statistically significant positive trends in TC rainfall at a number of locations. Principal components analysis revealed that AMO exhibited significant linkages to TC rainfall in northern New England as well as along the US Gulf Coast, while ENSO was most strongly linked to TC variability in Texas. Results illustrate the varied nature of TC rainfall across the eastern USA and the complex linkages to large-scale climate mechanisms at interannual and decadal time scales.