Int. J. Climatology 31, 115-126, doi:10.1002/joc.2047
The distribution of outliers is used as a tool for finding the extreme value distribution of meteorological parameters and to provide return values for large return periods from short records. Its potential is demonstrated for 5 cases. For extreme winds in the Northern Hemisphere (NH) the method shows that appropriately transformed annual maximum wind speeds can be described by a Gumbel distribution; for extreme waves it rejects the proposed adoption of an exponential distribution and points to a Gumbel distribution; for extreme daily European precipitation R it confirms the theoretically predicted value k = 2/3 in its Weibull distribution and it also justifies the application of the Gumbel distribution to R2/3 up to return periods of about 50 000 years; for seasonal precipitation in the Netherlands it highlights enhanced extreme precipitation in the coastal area in December-January-February (DJF) and failure of the k = 2/3 hypothesis outside June-July-August (JJA); for sea levels in the Southern North Sea it points to the Gumbel distribution and provides improved estimates for the 104-return value of the sea level at coastal stations, which is elaborated for the Dutch tidal station Scheveningen.