Archive for April, 2011

April 27th Tornado Outbreak Preliminary Comparison…
April 29, 2011

Everyone is asking about the comparison of this weeks Tornado Outbreak to that of May 3, 1999.  Well so far, what we do know is just bases on fatalities, the Tornado Outbreak east of us on April 27, 2011, was worse.  The damage assessments are still being conducted as we speak, so we will know more in days to come. The number of fatalities on April 27th, far exceeds that of May 3, 1999, even including the Tornadoes that were part of that outbreak in other states in 99′.  The May 3 tornado outbreak in Oklahoma took 43 lives and 10 more in other states.  So far the death toll from the April 27th Tornado Outbreak is nearing 300.  This could be the 2nd most deadly Tornado outbreak ever.  The most deadly is the Tri-State Tornado on March 18, 1925 that killed 695 people.  The Tri-State Tornado was on the ground for 219 miles, and one thing that is notable is how long the Tornado that hit Tuscaloosa stayed on the ground as well. The official information has not been compiled but this tornado may have been on the ground more than 150 miles, however it may have lifted up at times. What needs to be assessed is how strong it was at each point in its evolution.  These are just some of the questions that need to be answered before we make a final comparison.  The May 3,1999 tornado was on the ground for 38 miles straight at one point but lifted up in other areas before and after that stretch.  Here is a look at the graphic from May 3, 1999, the strongest Tornado that I detailed in this blog is indicated by Storm A in dark green.

We will know more in a few weeks when the damage assessment is done.

Sarah

The Weekend…
April 29, 2011

Today will be warm and windy with high fire danger in Western Oklahoma.

The weekend looks unsettled with a very slight chance for showers late Saturday and a good chance for rain early Sunday.  With lots of activities this weekend, the Walk for Hemophilia the MS Walk, and the Memorial Marathon, all eyes are on the weather. Saturday will be nice for the walks but Sunday will be cool, soggy, and dreary for the marathon.

Sarah

A Wet Start…
April 27, 2011

This morning will be soggy but the afternoon looks dry and Thursday looks great!  Highs on Thursday will rebound to 77.

Sarah

Did You Expect This?
April 27, 2011

We know April has been busy, but were you expecting it to be this busy??? I don’t think anyone was! So far this month we have had 6559 severe weather reports and I would not be the least bit surprised if we reach 7000 reports by the end of the day as there is now a HIGH RISK for severe weather in the southeast. As a matter of fact, there has only been one day during the entire month that did not see severe weather. When was it? How about April 6th.

-Damon

How’s The Drought Looking Now?
April 26, 2011

No doubt about it, we needed the rain. No one will argue with that! But, how has the recent rain impacted the drought? For some parts in the state, it made a huge impact, while in others, nothing. Here is what I mean:

Eastern Oklahoma had no problem picking up rainfall and perhaps even a little bit too much. But, check out Western Oklahoma. I know I put ” LESS THAN 1″” but it should read more like ” LESS THAN A QUARTER INCH”. However, all hope is not lost as there is 1 more shot of rain for the state that comes in tonight. And, if we take the models for their word, then those areas that haven’t seen that much rain, mainly Northwest and Western Oklahoma, then those areas could see a decent amount of rain.(Perhaps a few inches) So, with the rain that has already fallen and the potential rainfall that could fall, how will the drought look come the next drought monitor? It’ll actually be a tough call.

The rainfall reports that are used to tabulate the drought monitor will be collected this afternoon, and the drought monitor will be worked on and released by Thursday. So, tonight’s rainfall will not be included in this weeks drought monitor. Regardless, this is what we’re still dealing with:

Drought conditions will improve east of I-35, and depending on how much rain we see tonight, we may see conditions improve to the west, but the drought will not be erased completely and will likely persist for the rest of the spring season.

-Damon

Ready or Not… Here May Comes…
April 26, 2011

It’s the time of the year where Oklahoma meteorologists are told not to leave town. Why? Because we’re heading into the peak of tornado season. Check out the graphic above and notice when certain states peak. East of here, it’s usually April, which would make a lot of sense given the recent reports of tornadoes. But, here in Oklahoma, it’s May and Early June for our peak. So, how will this May look compared to April?

For the time being, most of the models are showing that the storm track will remain north and other than a few embedded disturbances moving across the south, we should see a low chance for severe storms between now and the first few days of May.

-Damon

Hello There Day 3 Moderate Risk…
April 25, 2011

If you have been in Oklahoma long enough, then you’re well aware of the terms ” slight risk, moderate risk, high risk”. But, how familiar are you with seeing a MODERATE RISK on a DAY 3 outlook from The Storm Prediction Center? If you’re unsure, then let me go ahead and answer that thought for you. It’s very unusual to see a MODERATE RISK ON A DAY 3 OUTLOOK!

To get an idea, this is only the 11th time in the last 11 years that there has been a DAY 3 MODERATE RISK issued.

But, perhaps even more interesting, this is the first time ever that all outlook days had a MODERATE RISK associated to them.

Who said this was suppose to be a quiet spring?

-Damon

What Happens Next?
April 25, 2011

It’s been great to see the rain over the past few days. But, what comes next? We have today’s rain chances and then a chance for rain Tuesday Night/Wednesday Night and after that..things begins to change. So, what can we expect. Let the graphic do the talking:

Sadly, things look like they will be returning to more of the “same ‘ole same ole” where moisture return is shallow from The Gulf of Mexico and storms develop to the east. So, a dry weather pattern with a good chance of seeing below normal rainfall will take us into the month of May. Enjoy the rain while it’s here… because it may not return for a while.

-Damon

The Reports Keep Coming…
April 25, 2011

Welcome to spring time in The United States, Yes, it’s normal to see tornadoes in April, but did anyone ever imagine that we would see this many? Preliminary reports so far put us at nearly 560 tornado reports for the month. Impressive? You better believe it! Especially since our 3 year average is only 185. And, we’re not even done yet with the month! It is important to note that many of these reports may indeed be the same tornado reported twice. So, even if we took just 70% of these tornado reports, we would still be approaching 400 reports.

Are we shocked by these numbers? In one way yes, but in other ways not really since La Nina can typically generate higher than normal tornado reports. Just imagine what May could look like if we kept the pattern this active. May is usually the most active tornado month of the entire year! Could we see 600 tornado reports next month? If April is trying to teach us anything, then I would say there is a good possibility.

-Damon

Tornado Watch #201….
April 25, 2011

EFFECTIVE THIS MONDAY MORNING AND EVENING FROM 1100 AM UNTIL 600
   PM CDT.
   
   TORNADOES...HAIL TO 3 INCHES IN DIAMETER...THUNDERSTORM WIND
   GUSTS TO 70 MPH...AND DANGEROUS LIGHTNING ARE POSSIBLE IN THESE
   AREAS.
   
   THE TORNADO WATCH AREA IS APPROXIMATELY ALONG AND 105 STATUTE
   MILES EAST AND WEST OF A LINE FROM 5 MILES EAST SOUTHEAST OF
   CORSICANA TEXAS TO 20 MILES WEST NORTHWEST OF FORT SMITH
   ARKANSAS.

-Damon