Archive for July, 2006

Metro wildfire today
July 31, 2006

It looks like our recent drought is finally taking a toll as far as wildfires are concerned. We saw an explosive fire today in the metro. Lower humidities, strong winds, and excessive heat helped the blaze get out of control. Unfortunately, the conditions will remain like this tomorrow so be extra careful. We’re still holding out hope that a weak cold front will start working through the state Wednesday bringing slightly cooler temperatures and some rainfall.


Hurricane Real Estate
July 31, 2006

Two cities that were hit by hurricanes last year have vastly different real estate markets.

In New Orleans it is good news. Real estate is one of the few bright spots in the city’s struggling economy. Sales of single family homes are up 60 percent from the first quarter of 2005 to the first quarter of 2006. Over 4000 homes have been sold as residents who evacuated after Hurricane Katrina return to the city. Most of the real estate movement is in neighborhoods that did not have much damage during the hurricane. Areas that were devastated during the storm are still mostly desolate.

In Key West, people are leaving. The island was hit by Hurricane Wilma last fall and one quarter of the homes were flooded with at least a foot of water. Most of Florida is seeing a population boom, but Key West has had a population decline. The population dipped 2.16 percent from July 2004 to July 2005, and it has fallen more than four percent in the past five years. Hurricanes are a big part of the population decline. Insurance premiums are the highest in the state, and the island has been evacuated six times in the past two years.

Day 17 and counting….
July 30, 2006

Yep, so far we are at day 17 of 100 degrees or hotter weather here in the metro. Tomorrow we expect number 18 which will tie our number of days in 2003. It looks like we are on track to 2001 where we had 25 days of 100 degree weather. Hopefully it won’t be any worse than that.

If you haven’t done so, now’s the time to make sure your a/c is running at full throttle. Clean off the dirt and debris on the outside condenser by using a water hose. Inside, make sure you change the filters at least once a month. Both of those simple actions can help squeeze out some colder air and add money back into your pocket!


What the HAIL!?
July 30, 2006

I recently saw this on the internet and thought I would share it with you.

On this date back in 1979, a 40-minute hailstorm bombed Fort Collins, Colorado, with baseball to softball size hail. 2,000 homes and 2,500 automobiles were damaged, and about 25 persons were injured. Unfortunately, a 3 month old baby also died later of injuries received from the hailstorm.

Meteorologically this is a freak event but it also shows the unpredictablity of the atmosphere. I have personally chased storms that contained softball hail and other storms that have dropped nickel sized hail 3 inches deep in the middle of June in Southwest Oklahoma. Snow graters had to be called out to clear the roads.

Crazy Weather!!

Have a great Sunday,

Steve Carano

Ray’s of light
July 29, 2006

We’re on a roll with the Ticker guys at the Oklahoma Mesonet. Here’s another tidbit of info you might find interesting….

A Ray of Sunshine on a Friday Afternoon

Today, just an interesting picture taken from the front yeard of a
randomly chosen climatologist:

The ray of light is a crepuscular ray, which is Latin for “when a piece
of sunlight breaks through the clouds and makes a ray across the sky”,
or something like that.

Crepuscular rays are fun, but probably not as fun as anti-crepuscular
rays, which is Latin for “cool-looking ray-like shadow effect”. We wrote
about those last spring:

Heat Wave Again
July 29, 2006

Here we go again. Another stretch of 100’s in our state with little to no relief in sight.

Not counting today, there have been 16 100 degree days in OKC. The average is 10 days that we see 100s in OKC.

This weekend will be very hot with today near 101 and Sunday near 102. This doesn’t take into effect the humidity or heat index vales (what it feels like). They should soar to near 110 in some locations in the state.

So, dangerous heat is here. Take care of yourselves and stay cool!

Steve Carano

The last 10 years….
July 28, 2006

We turn once again to the Oklahoma Mesonet and the infamous Ticker staff to drum up interesting things about the weather here in the state. Today’s focus is on temperatures broken down for each month during a 10 year period. Would you guess we were warm or colder than normal averaging all of the months and years together? Well, here’s more:

The following graphics are the change in average temperature for each
day on the calendar, laid out in a meteogram-ish time-series format.
Individiual dots show the change in individual days. Colored areas show
the same info, smoothed over a week-long period. Red areas show when
1996-2005 was warmer than the long-term average, and blue areas show
when it was cooler.

Anyway, a few things jump out consistently across the board:

* Early spring has defintely been cooler as of late.
* February, especially late February, has been much warmer.
* Mid-may and late-August warm bumps suggest the summer season
is longer (starts earlier, finishes later)

A few other things:

* Buffalo, in the west, has warmed more overall than the eastern
stations. This trend (west OK slightly warmer, east OK slightly
cooler) is fairly consistent among the 30-something Oklahoma
stations not shown in this Ticker.

* If all this change stresses you out, relax. You could be in
southern Utah:


Hot Weekend Ahead
July 28, 2006

Good Friday morning, I am giving Frank a well deserved break today.

We had a few roughty storms yesterday and we could see some also today but less numerous. Not as hot as yesterday but the weekend will change that. Highs Saturday and Sunday will be over 100 for much of the state.

If you are interested in keeping up with the drought across the state, here is a website I use:

Take care and Happy Friday!!

Steve Carano

Damage in the Metro
July 28, 2006

Storms this evening really packed a punch. We were tracking an approaching storm heading toward Mustang and warned of 60+mph winds. Well, just after it crossed the town, a wet microburst occurred and out came 80mph winds! It happend in a very small square mile right along Hwy152 between Sarah road and Mustang Rd. See the images from Advantage Doppler HD. The event lasted less than 3 minutes.

Fire and water?
July 27, 2006

The Oklahoma Ticker staff are always publishing neat stuff about the weather.
Case in point an excerpt from below. Some really cool stuff can happen in meteorology
sometimes. Here’s an example:

One of the ingredients for convective development is a source of
lift. Usually, in our state, when we’re looking for lift, we’re thinking
about boundaries: cold fronts, drylines, outflow, etc.

However, these aren’t the only sources of lift. Mountains can spark a
thundercloud, and then there’s fire. Yes, fire. You need a lot of energy,
but that’s just what happened yesterday just southeast of Reno, Nevada.
Dr. Kelly Redmond of the Western Regional Climate Center snapped the
following pic of convective development across the Truckee Valley from
his location at the Desert Research Institute:

The brownish material beneath the cloud is smoke from forest fires, and
the developing convective plume is fueled in part by the associated heat.