More tornadoes for the Plains

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 13:26 (GMT)

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Severe weather and tornadoes continued to pound the Plains yesterday, and more severe weather is on the way today. On Thursday, four tornadoes ripped through Oklahoma, including a twister that hit the northwest suburbs of Oklahoma City. This tornado damaged 50 buildings and injured four people. All of the injuries were were people in mobile homes or vehicles, as is typical for tornado victims. Thursday's four twisters came a day after 65 tornadoes swept through Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, and Nebraska, killing four people. A tornado in Holly, Colorado did extensive damage, killing one person and injuring eleven. It was the first tornado fatality in Colorado since 1960. The two tornado fatalities in Oklahoma Wednesday were that state's first deaths in five years. One other person died in a tornado that struck the Texas Panhandle Wednesday. Several of Wednesday's tornadoes were strong EF2s with winds of 111 - 135 mph. Damage surveys have not yet been completed on the Holly, CO tornado, and most of the other 65 tornadoes from that day.

Expect another significant severe weather outbreak late this afternoon in the Plains, according to the latest severe weather outlook from the Storm Prediction Center. They have placed Central Texas, including Dallas/Fort Worth, in their "Moderate Risk" area for severe weather. Four tornadoes have already touched down in Texas this morning, but none caused significant damage. Flash flooding and large hail--including baseball sized hail--have also occurred in Southwest Texas this morning. Keep an eye on the Central Texas radar (Figure 1) all day, as these severe thunderstorms grow in intensity and start spawning tornadoes.


Figure 1. Current radar for Central Texas.

Jeff Masters

Wild Night (treeman)
In the Kansas Colorado and Nebraska there were reported 60+ tornadoes
Wild Night

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89. RL3AO
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 16:47 (GMT)
This is nothing out of the norm DocBen. The Western Pacific Typhoon season is year round. You can have storms in any month of the year.
88. DocBen
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 15:46 (GMT)
Tropical Depression 01W in the northwest Pacific - and it's still MARCH! May become a Typhoon this week.

What is the earliest we have seen a northern hemisphere typhoon/hurricane?
Member Since: 16.05.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 98
87. hurricane23
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 15:43 (GMT)
Just updated we have the first tropical system to develope in the northeren hemisphere....

Forcast at this time to reach category 1 intensity in a few days and threaten the guam area.


Member Since: 14.05.2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13597
86. Frozencanuck
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 15:35 (GMT)
Eaglesrock and T2, don't you think Rand has the right to be upset. Here he is doing his best to post warnings of severe weather and people are still too stupid to have alert radios especially those living in such storm prone areas then have the nerve to chastize him for their problems....I would be upset too. Stupidity knows no bounds but being alert to weather conditions in your area is a must if you want to live on the Gulf coast, don't ya think???
Member Since: 8.12.2006 Posts: 42 Comments: 4738
85. tornadodude
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 13:57 (GMT)
One supercell thunderstorm produced many of the tornadoes of the day, tracking from northern Oklahoma and southeastern Kansas in the morning, across Missouri during the afternoon and early evening, across Illinois during the mid to late evening, into Indiana during the late evening, before finally losing severe characteristics in Michigan nearly 800 miles (1290 km) and more than 17.5 hours after it first formed. This is the longest path and duration supercell on record. The city of Springfield, Illinois saw a strong tornado track directly through the city from this storm. It also did damage near Sedalia, Columbia, and Mexico, Missouri. The strongest tornado, spawned by a different supercell, was a rare double tornado rated F4, but fortunately it remained in rural countryside.

Member Since: 28.06.2006 Posts: 24 Comments: 8185
84. Skyepony (Mod)
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 12:24 (GMT)
Baha~ Not to mention how many buoys never got replaced after '05.
Member Since: 10.08.2005 Posts: 156 Comments: 36074
83. Thunderstorm2
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 11:42 (GMT)
I know...he needs to calm down a little bit
Member Since: 22.12.2006 Posts: 129 Comments: 7608
82. eaglesrock
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 11:31 (GMT)
Rand is going crazy about the severe weather in his blog.
81. Thunderstorm2
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 11:28 (GMT)
TC Jaya is 85 knots and 955 hPa.

Formation for TD 92W to develop into a TS is GOOD
Member Since: 22.12.2006 Posts: 129 Comments: 7608
80. BahaHurican
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 11:28 (GMT)
On the new computer model:

It gorges on data? But isn't that vital satellite due to fail at any moment, with no replacement even envisioned?

Is this bass-awkward planning, or what?

Sheesh.

Morning, all.
Member Since: 25.10.2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20688
79. BahaHurican
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 11:24 (GMT)
Jaya is no longer a tropical storm, probably not Cat 2 either:

I have to agree, without even looking at any "official" data; that structure is too symetrical and organized for even a cat 2.

Sure hope it recurves and stays out to sea.
Member Since: 25.10.2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20688
77. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 09:33 (GMT)
NWS GUAM

TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS POSSIBLE MONDAY OR TUESDAY FOR THE
MARIANA ISLANDS...

A TROPICAL DEPRESSION WEST OF POHNPEI IS EXPECTED TO DEVELOP AND
MOVE NORTHWEST TOWARD THE MARIANA ISLANDS...POSSIBLY BRINGING
TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS TO THE REGION LATE MONDAY OR TUESDAY.

AT 4 PM LST...THE BROAD CENTER OF THE DISTURBANCE WAS LOCATED NEAR
LATITUDE 7.2 DEGREES NORTH AND LONGITUDE 156.0 DEGREES EAST. THIS IS
ABOUT 150 MILES WEST OF POHNPEI...875 MILES EAST-SOUTHEAST OF GUAM
AND 885 MILES SOUTHEAST OF SAIPAN.

IT IS TOO EARLY YET TO SAY EXACTLY WHERE THIS DEVELOPING DISTURBANCE
WILL GO AND HOW QUICKLY IT WILL INTENSIFY...BUT HEAVY RAIN AND
TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS IN EXCESS OF 40 MPH ARE POSSIBLE BY LATE
MONDAY OR TUESDAY AS THE SYSTEM APPROACHES AND PASSES THE MARIANAS.

REVIEW YOUR STORM PREPAREDNESS PLANS NOW AND PREPARE TO TAKE NEEDED
STEPS TO PROTECT LIFE AND PROPERTY IF A WATCH OR WARNING IS ISSUED.
STAY INFORMED ON THIS EARLY SEASON TROPICAL CYCLONE THREAT BY
MONITORING THE LATEST FORECASTS AND STATEMENTS FROM THE NATIONAL
WEATHER SERVICE.
Member Since: 24.05.2006 Posts: 48 Comments: 43653
76. hurricane23
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 08:39 (GMT)
Intersting article here-Ultra computer to detect killer storm.

By Ken Kaye
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Posted March 31 2007

It can portray a hurricane in stunning detail. It's powered by a supercomputer that can perform 14 trillion calculations a second. And starting in June, it should help tropical meteorologists project whether a storm will arrive as a killer or a creampuff.

The sophisticated new forecast model could be the Holy Grail that forecasters have long sought to sharply improve their hurricane intensity predictions and give emergency managers and residents alike more time to prepare accordingly.

"This is the first time a hurricane model will have its own analysis of the center of the hurricane's structure," said Naomi Surgi of the National Weather Service, who spearheaded the model's development. "This is really pushing the frontiers of science."

Although forecasters at the National Hurricane Center in Miami-Dade County have achieved record accuracy in projecting the path of a storm, they still struggle to gauge its power. South Floridians received an unpleasant reminder of this meteorological soft spot in August when Tropical Storm Ernesto was predicted to plow ashore as a hurricane. After thousands of residents scrambled to put up shutters, the system arrived as nothing more than a squally nuisance.

"Often times, the intensity forecasts can be poor, and that's not because forecasters aren't doing the best they can," said John Gamache, field program manager of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Hurricane Research Division in Miami. "It's just that, to an extent, our understanding of the processes within a storm are kind of limited."

Enter the new model, officially called the Hurricane Weather and Research Forecast system, or "H-werf "for short. It will zero in on the ocean's interaction with a storm as never before and produce an elaborate three-dimensional picture of a hurricane's core, where the most vicious winds lurk.

Hopes are that it will outperform older storm intensity models, said Surgi, hurricane modeling program leader at the weather service's Environmental Modeling Center in Camp Springs, Md.

To function, the model needs to gorge on data: sea surface temperatures, wind conditions and barometric pressures, gleaned by hurricane hunter planes, satellites, buoys and other sensors.

After this banquet of information is ingested, it is sifted, studied and manipulated by NOAA's supercomputer in Gaithersburg, Md., which is capable of absorbing 240 million global weather observations daily and doing 14 trillion data operations in a single second.

To give some perspective, if a human were to undertake 14 trillion calculations at the pace of one per second, the job would be complete in 443,632 years.

The H-werf is sure to be a hot topic at the National Hurricane Conference, which starts Monday in New Orleans and helps meteorologists, emergency managers, government officials and others gear up for the coming storm season.

The model already has proven to be a powerful forecasting tool. While being tested, it accurately predicted that Hurricane Katrina would spin into a Category 5 monster as it marched across the Gulf of Mexico toward New Orleans in August 2005. It did "a really good job" tracking other major hurricanes that summer, including Dennis, Rita and Wilma, Surgi said.

Nevertheless, it will take a few seasons for forecasters to gain confidence in the new model, she said. While it should produce positive results this year, it will require annual adjustments and upgrades before it becomes a truly reliable prophet of a hurricane's development.

"We will see an accelerated rate of improvement over the next five to 10 years," she said.

NOAA, the parent agency of both the weather service and the hurricane center, has made intensity forecasting a top priority because the Atlantic basin is entrenched in a period of heightened activity. That was clearly seen in 2005, the most destructive and active season since records began in 1851.

The fear is that more hyperactive seasons may lie ahead, and that off-target intensity predictions could lead to disaster. Yet, try as they might, forecasters have so far been unable to grasp the complex mechanisms that influence storm strength. As a result, the hurricane center last year erred by an average of 21 mph in predicting the sustained winds of storms three days in advance. That wasn't much better than the average error a decade and a half ago.

The most dreaded scenario for forecasters and emergency managers alike is for a system to rapidly intensify just prior to landfall, as Charley did in August 2004. In five hours, the system's sustained winds surged from 110 to 150 mph, from Category 2 to Category 4, before battering Punta Gorda, Port Charlotte and other Southwest Florida towns.

The reason Charley bulked up so quickly: It crossed over a patch of unusually warm water near the coast and feasted greedily on the thermal energy. Forecasters hadn't expected that. And, in general, they have difficulty foreseeing when a storm will suddenly spin up, said Nick Shay, of the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.

"Rapid intensification happens in only 10 to 15 percent of the systems," he said. "But those are the ones that give forecasters fits."

In its proposed $3.8 billion budget for next year, NOAA has requested $2 million specifically for hurricane intensity research. It has amassed an arsenal of technological tools to sample the atmosphere around hurricanes, including a high-flying Gulfstream jet equipped with Doppler radar. And it has conducted in-depth post-mortem studies of storms. For instance, during the 2006 storm season, it examined the entire lifecycle of some tropical systems to determine what makes them fluctuate in strength.

But the real optimism for progress lies with the new model, officials said. Although it is "one piece of the puzzle" in the hurricane center's ongoing campaign to improve forecast accuracy, it is a key one, said hurricane specialist James Franklin.

"That is our hope for the future," he said.
Member Since: 14.05.2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13597
75. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 07:37 (GMT)
Area of convection near 7.2N 156.0E, or 245 nm east of Chuuk. Imagery indicates that although the overall circulation is broad. convection is beginning to consolidate near 156E just west of Pohnpei. Analysis shows a well-defined convective banding wrapping from the southeast of the storm towards the low level circulation center. The system is in a region of moderate vertical wind shear, but has excellent equatorward outflow and improving poleward outflow due to a deepening upper level low well to its east.

Maximum sustained winds at the center is 18 to 22 knots with a minimum sea level pressure near 1002 mb

The potential of this disturbance to form into a significant tropical cyclone within the next 12 to 24 hours is upgraded to GOOD.
Member Since: 24.05.2006 Posts: 48 Comments: 43653
74. Madrid
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 04:58 (GMT)
Member Since: 17.01.2007 Posts: 36 Comments: 4348
73. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 04:46 (GMT)
Tropical Depression [1004 hPa] in the northwestern Pacific Ocean.



SST 28-29C, vertical wind shear low to moderate. (10 to 20 knots)
Member Since: 24.05.2006 Posts: 48 Comments: 43653
71. Skyepony (Mod)
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 02:22 (GMT)
Here's damage reports for that local area.
Member Since: 10.08.2005 Posts: 156 Comments: 36074
69. Skyepony (Mod)
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 01:57 (GMT)
That cell (Hondo duck now) headed toward San Antonio. Is the same one I commented about 3 hrs ago ago being long lived, jeez.
Member Since: 10.08.2005 Posts: 156 Comments: 36074
68. BahaHurican
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 01:51 (GMT)
New named sytem in the Indian Ocean, Jaya, is currently a tropical storm, but forecast to reach cat. 2. So far it looks headed for Madagascar again, though it has potential to recurve as it gets closer to the island.

What a hectic season for that part of the globe so far . . .
Member Since: 25.10.2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20688
67. disasterrelief
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 01:42 (GMT)
san antonio has a nice cell heading its way
Member Since: 22.07.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 0
66. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 01:07 (GMT)
central us in for f5 tornadic event possible 3 or more f5 tornado's occuring in next several hrs as dirual kicks up and the dreaded night storm approaches
Member Since: 15.07.2006 Posts: 163 Comments: 52253
65. hurricane23
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 00:49 (GMT)
Intence cell indeed jake436...

Member Since: 14.05.2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13597
64. jake436
31. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 00:19 (GMT)
74 dBz storm about 35 miles west of San Antonio, TX, moving due east. >4.0 inch hail with it.


Link
Member Since: 31.08.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 271
63. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 23:47 (GMT)
THE AREA OF CONVECTION PREVIOUSLY LOCATED NEAR 6.1N 158.1E
IS NOW LOCATED NEAR 6.3N 156.9E, APPROXIMATELY 300 NM EAST OF CHUUK.
RECENT ANIMATED MULTISPECTRAL SATELLITE IMAGERY AND A 302002Z SSMI
IMAGE REVEAL FLARING CONVECTION ON THE NORTHERN QUADRANTS OF A DEV-
ELOPING LOW LEVEL CIRCULATION CENTER EVIDENT IN A 301937Z QUIKSCAT
IMAGE. UPPER LEVEL ANALYSIS INDICATES A FAVORABLE ENVIRONMENT FOR
DEVELOPMENT WITH GOOD POLEWARD OUTFLOW AND LOW TO MODERATE VERTICAL
WIND SHEAR.
Member Since: 24.05.2006 Posts: 48 Comments: 43653
62. Skyepony (Mod)
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 23:29 (GMT)
It's worse smelling than swamp fire.
Member Since: 10.08.2005 Posts: 156 Comments: 36074
61. HIEXPRESS
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 23:27 (GMT)
Showing at the Orlando, Fl Science Center in the Dr. Phillips CineDome:
Experience the world's largest I/werks domed theater and Digistar II planetarium, with 28,000 watts of digital sound.
Hurricane on the Bayou - Orlando Science Center
Member Since: 13.10.2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 2155
59. Inyo
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 23:19 (GMT)
that looks like it smells a lot worse than burning chaparral
Member Since: 3.09.2002 Posts: 42 Comments: 867
58. Skyepony (Mod)
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 23:03 (GMT)
Inyo~ my local dump is on fire...
Member Since: 10.08.2005 Posts: 156 Comments: 36074
57. PGIFL
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 23:01 (GMT)
There was a major amount of African dust over the Caribbean around 1980. The sky was occluded for a long period. It was almost like a heavy haze. The only memories are: I do not remember a hurricane @ that time & ther was no
Christmas wind that winter. Seas were calm through Dec. & Jan, with no trade winds.
56. Skyepony (Mod)
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:56 (GMT)
DocBen~ We probibly haven't gone 2 weeks the whole off season without an invest in that area. It's been the year of the never ending invests for that area.
Member Since: 10.08.2005 Posts: 156 Comments: 36074
55. Inyo
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:54 (GMT)
Hey, it looks like despite La Nina, the area of the East Pacific where hurricanes usually form is still above average. Will La Nina still repress those storms? Also, it looks like the water off of California is quite cold.. I hope this means we will get some fog to help with the fire danger. There's a fire TODAY by the hollywood sign.. fires in March are almost unheard of!
Member Since: 3.09.2002 Posts: 42 Comments: 867
54. Skyepony (Mod)
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:54 (GMT)
This tornado vorticy has been around a while. A long lived monster perhaps.
Member Since: 10.08.2005 Posts: 156 Comments: 36074
53. Patrap
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:38 (GMT)

Bad storms again from the same system..a very slow mover.
Member Since: 3.07.2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125562
52. DocBen
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:34 (GMT)
Thanks Michael - a northern hemisphere invest this early? WOW!
Member Since: 16.05.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 98
51. Thunderstorm2
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:10 (GMT)
He posted on his own blog in April Last year, i think
Member Since: 22.12.2006 Posts: 129 Comments: 7608
50. anvilhead
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:07 (GMT)
First time ive seen you post in your own blog jeff!
Member Since: 14.09.2006 Posts: 128 Comments: 5257
49. jake436
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:05 (GMT)
Link
Member Since: 31.08.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 271
48. jake436
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 22:03 (GMT)
That storm is huge in size, but looks to be dying down a bit. According to NEXRAD's storm tracks on this site, there is no tornado with it, and only small hail. Good thing.
Member Since: 31.08.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 271
46. Thunderstorm2
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 21:42 (GMT)
They need to buckle down and prepare for the worst
Member Since: 22.12.2006 Posts: 129 Comments: 7608
45. Dr. Jeff Masters , Director of Meteorology (Admin)
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 21:38 (GMT)
Waco could get a direct hit by a tornado at about 5:10 pm CDT--latest radar storm velocity shows a strongly rotating supercell thunderstorm bearing down on the city.

Jeff Masters
43. Thunderstorm2
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 21:29 (GMT)
Hi guys.

MTS Jaya is going to blow up intensification wise
Member Since: 22.12.2006 Posts: 129 Comments: 7608
41. DocBen
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 21:16 (GMT)
Thanks - still southern hemisphere. Makes sense.
Member Since: 16.05.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 98
39. RL3AO
30. maaliskuuta 2007 klo 21:06 (GMT)
Here you go DocBen. Its in the west pacific.

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About JeffMasters

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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