Thursday, March 1, 2007

March 1, 2007 - Severe Wx

March certainly came in like a Lion. With severe weather predicted for February 28th and March 1st, I expected to end up spotting during this event. As usual for our area, the weather came in after dark. WAY after dark.

At around 3:30 AM the weather alert went off for counties to the west of Christian. My wife started monitoring for their safety, and I headed out. There was a reported wall cloud moving from the Republic area to the South Springfield area. I headed up 160 highway and monitored from the Weaver Road area. I never did see a wall cloud or funnel (that I heard was reported).

At one point I thought I saw a lowering in the cloud base and headed east on James River. I couldn't confirm it, and it was moving way to fast to catch. Skywarn started reporting a storm coming out of Crane that was expected to go through the Highlandville area that was showing signs of rotation.

I headed back south to Nixa and was in the area of my neighborhood about 2 miles south of 14 highway in the 160 area, when I started getting pelted with dime to nickel size hail and very heavy rain. I popped into my house to check radar and saw a storm that was just to my south with signs of rotation. Just about the time I wondered why there wasn't a tornado warning, the box popped up. I sent the wife and kids back to the basement shelter and headed back out. By the time I could go about a mile south, net control indicated this thing was already 9 miles east of me. Wow! It was moving fast.

As it turned out, that was the storm coming out of Crane. There was no way I imagined that storm would have been already to the Nixa area by the time I got back from Springfield. Anyway, hats off to the guys manning Skywarn throughout the night. Nice work.

Note: This storm event ended up killing a 7 year old girl in the Cauldfield area. It hit much harder NW and SE of my area. My heart goes out to her family, and all of the families in the SE part of the country who were pummeled by this event. The NWS has a good review of the Cauldfield area tornado.

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