Thursday, February 26, 2009

Severe Storms Possible - Thursday 2/26

Severe storms are possible this evening if conditions come together. Large hail, damaging winds and a limited risk for tornadoes exists.

You should stay tuned to local weather forecasts. Make sure your NOAA All Hazards Radio is on and backed up by battery. If you don't own a NOAA All Hazards Radio, you should. Click the link for a previous blog post on selecting one.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Free No-Ads Weather Underground Offer

Weather Underground is giving away 1-year ad-free premium membership using coupon code BAVV5. Thanks RileyRR
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  4. After receiving a confirmation email with activation code, activate your account
  5. At payment page, enter coupon BAVV5
Update (Thanks Max!): If you are already a member of Weather Underground, just click on the upgrade link and then enter in that coupon code where it says redeem code.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Tuesday 2/10/09 EF-1 Tornado Update - Springfield, MO

Tuesday's unwarned tornado was no ordinary tornado. Kevin Lighty, Chief Meteorologist at KSPR, put together a great blog article describing why this tornado was different, and the reason why the radar was unable to detect it, preventing The National Weather Service from issuing a warning. Ted Keller, Chief Meteorologist at KOLR10/Ozarks Fox Weather Labs, also put together a blog article explaining why this was difficult to detect.

For those out there doubting the system, let me just say this...Steve Runnels, Warning Coordination Meteorologist at the National Weather Service said it best. Last year there were 64 tornadoes in the County Warning Area that the Springfield NWS office is responsible for. This is double the annual norm. The average lead time was 19.5 minutes. 19.5 minutes is a good amount of time to prepare and take shelter, and Doppler Radar plays a big part in that.

Radar works, it just doesn't work to predict all types of tornadoes. This reiterates the importance of SkyWarn and other spotter type groups. Radar can't do it all, but it does a great job. Having ground truth information from storm spotters works in conjunction with radar data and is used by the NWS to provide warnings. This event was at night, so spotting would have been difficult to impossible, depending on the rain. This particular storm was not anticipated to have any severe attributes, so there was not focus put on it.

In the end, this goes to show the importance of paying attention to Watches. A Tornado Watch, which we were under on Tuesday evening, means conditions are favorable for the development of severe thunderstorms capable of producing tornadoes. There's a reason tornado watches are issued, as we found out Tuesday night.

The posted picture courtesy of Daniel Hirsch. 4300 block of S. Glenn.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

EF-1 Tornado Causes Damage in Springfield

At approximately 10:50 PM on Tuesday, February 10th, a 200 yard wide EF-1 tornado caused damage in Springfield Initial survey reports show damage occurred just southwest of the intersection of Republic and Scenic, extending to Fremont and Catalpa. Winds were estimated around 100 MPH. Approximately two dozen homes and businesses were impacted, including the collapse of a duplex apartment garage collapse and Commerce bank at Republic and Scenic. No injuries were reported.

More info here at NWS site.

I have received a couple of first hand accounts. One from someone who lives in the area where it initially touched down. He heard the roar, and the house made a "whistling" sound. He commented to his wife that he wondered if it was a tornado, but they both wrote it off to wind and rain. He was quite surprised today. Additionally, two trained storm spotters, Rich Vogt (KB9YZE) and Rod Kittleman (K0ADI) witnessed the tornado cross in front of them. They assisted with blocking traffic due to debris in the road at National and Sunshine. Their vehicles are the two on the left in this picture I stole from KTTS.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Severe Storms Tue 2/10-Wed 2/11

The National Weather Service is calling for strong to severe storms Tuesday night into Wednesday. This includes the risk for:
  • Wind gusts to 70 MPH
  • Golf ball sized hail
  • Isolated tornadoes
  • Heavy rain/flash flooding

SE KS and SW MO will be affected around 6 p.m. moving into central MO by 9 p.m. Now is the time to prepare.

You should stay tuned to local weather forecasts. Make sure your NOAA All Hazards Radio is on and backed up by battery. If you don't own a NOAA All Hazards Radio, you should. Click the link for a previous blog post on selecting one.

If you have any questions, my email address can be found in the bottom right of this blog.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Wild Tornado Video

This is a video I remember from a VHS tape I watched years ago. The guy filming gets zapped by lightning, then goes back at filming the oncoming tornado. He ends up getting hit by debris while videoing his neighbors mobile homes shredding.

Crazy Stuff!