Showing posts from April, 2016

Daily Weather Briefing Friday April 29, 2016

(Editors note- I will slowly be adding content to these daily weather briefings until it is a well oiled machine.  Any feedback is appreciated.  I will start with a national outlook and then issue our Southern New England forecast after that before going into some other things)

Yesterday's Recap
We have to go back to Tuesday first.  After strong criticism from some corners of the meteorology world  about lots of hype but not a lot of tornadoes the National Weather Service has finished its storm surveys. They have found that 20 tornadoes formed during the event.  Now they weren't the devastating long track tornadoes like the April 27, 2011 event so in some peoples minds it is a bust.  But is it?  I don't think so. Thursday featured some severe weather in North Carolina and the Texas panhandle (among other places)
Notice the red dot in Indiana.  That is the days lone tornado report and it shows up just in a regular thunderstorm risk.  That goes to show that no matter the fore…

Daily Weather Briefing Thursday April 28, 2016

After all the hype Tuesday received for its tornado potential Wednesday actually exceeded Tuesday's tornado count!  The total number of severe reports and damage was much greater on Tuesday which goes to show its not just about tornadoes.  The SPC did pretty well yesterday.  I said watch out for Southern Illinois but it turns out the tornado activity was fairly widespread. Today the storm threat has shifted further south The main areas of severe weather are along the stationary boundaries in Texas and along the warm front in North Carolina.  Seasonable conditions are in place in the Upper Midwest and Northeast.  Rain will move northward into the Great Lakes, PA, NY and parts of Southern New England later today. Low pressure will slide well south of New England as high pressure is in control.  I can't see much rain unless its in Southern CT/RI and even then amounts will be very light. The reason is flow is pretty zonal so instead of storms lifting into New England they will con…

5 Years Later- April 27, 2011 Severe Weather Outbreak

(For Wednesday forecast/Tuesday recap see here)
The forecast for severe weather and tornadoes in the Plains yesterday brought back terrible memories for millions of people in the Southeast yesterday as we are at the 5 year anniversary of one of the worst severe weather outbreaks in US history.  2011 featured stunning extreme weather from January through October before warm Pacific flow finally calmed things down.  This outbreak plus Joplin, Hurricane Irene and the Halloween Blizzard all made 2011 one of infamy for many.
Meteorological Conditions
The severe weather outbreak began a few days earlier as tornadoes were spawned in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky and some other states as early as April 24.  A series of upper level disturbances dropped a trough deep into the south.  Here is the 500 mb pattern at 7 AM on April 27
Notice strong winds along the base of the trough.  Here is a composite of the 500 mb winds, 850 winds, dewpoints
The strong winds at 850…

Wednesday US Weather Briefing

I'm not sure how much hype the projected tornado outbreak received as I was sitting in the sun (sometimes the casino) in Las Vegas.  After seeing some of the reactions on twitter it seems the event under preformed.  Perhaps these were storm chasers who need these storms for income but in my opinion when there are less tornadoes than forecast that is a good thing.  I'm not sure we can call this a bust.  There was a 10% chance of tornadoes in the plains within 25 miles of a given point.  That's not huge odds.  Here are the storm reports over the 9 AM outlook.
I don't think this is the SPC's best forecast but its not bad.  The threat in the Mid Atlantic never materialized nor the tornado threat.  But lets not act like there wasn't a lot of damage from winds and the tornadoes that did drop from the sky.  For example in Grayson County, TX Why were there less tornadoes than anticipated?  The wind shear was not great enough nor was the upper low as strong as it should…

Severe Weather to Impact Millions Today

A pair of upper level disturbances will led to severe weather in multiple parts of the US today.  The most significant threat is for tornadoes in the Great Plains as an upper atmosphere low lifts out of the Rockies.  In the Northeast a warm front has lifted just south of New England which has led to periods of rain in Southern New England, snow in Northern New England.  As result of such cold air aloft the biggest threat in Philadelphia and surrounding areas is hail.  Here is the Storm Prediction Center threat graphic
Here is the surface analysis as of 8 AM EST
That stationary boundary is a clear divided of where the warm and cold air is in the lower 48.  Anyone in New England right now knows what I mean.
So by 2 PM the warm front will halt its progress north.  A wave of low pressure will slide south of New England leading to heavy rain until about 2 PM.  The good news for New England is that high pressure will take over and led to seasonable weather through the weekend.  All storm w…

Bill Nye Issues 20K Challenge to Joe Bastardi

Anyone born between 1980-1995 grew up watching Bill Nye the Science Guy either for fun (guilty) or in science class.  Bill had a way of taking something complicated and breaking into simple terms for simple minds to understand.  Recently Bill has been one of main faces of the global warming/climate change.  This is somewhat odd because Bill has a BS in Mechanical Engineering but its a smart play by the liberals.  They know young people know who he is and they know we will listen to his message.
Joe Bastardi on the other hand is the co-chief meteorologist at Weatherbell Analytics.  He has a BS in meteorology from Penn State and spent a long time at AccuWeather.  Joe is known for some excellent long range forecasts and for being a climate skeptic or denier.  I have subscribed to Weatherbell since it opened because Joe and his team look at the weather in a very unique way and I have learned a lot.  Joe is a darling of Fox News and the conservative movement against climate change legislat…

Fire Weather Watch Tuesday

Dry conditions and gusty winds will lead to an elevated risk of fine fuel fires this evening ad Tuesday.  As a result the National Weather Service in Taunton has issued a Fire Weather Watch.  Although a low will pass through Northern New England tonight bringing accumulating rainfall that will miss the southern portion of the region.  Humidity levels will drop as low as 25%.  It won't even be that warm tomorrow as max temps are near 60.  But some gusty winds and the low moisture content in the atmosphere pose a dangerous combo.
Although we have seen some rains lately there are still areas of PA, NY, CT, MA and NH that have abnormally dry drought conditions.  We have made big strides since September however (image 2)
Fire officials recommend avoiding outdoor burning at all costs.  If you must burn apply for a permit.  You shouldn't do this anyway but don't just chuck your cigarette out the window.  Make sure its out in an ashtray or a cigarette bucket.  Yes I kno…

Heavy Rains Flood Southeastern Texas

In general the weather is nice throughout the lower 48 on this Monday April 18.  The major exception is in Southeastern Texas where a slow moving system has dropped nearly 10" of rain in places.  Radar estimates of rainfall are over a foot in places west of Houston
This is what that much rain in a short amount of time will do
On the ground
Off an overpass
Unfortunately there are starting to be reports of fatalities.  Floods are the number one killer of Americans in a given year.  So what exactly is causing this?  At the surface a stationary boundary is situated across Central Texas with a upper low to the west in the Rockies and high pressure in the Eastern US
The counter clockwise flow around the low and the clockwise flow around the high are allowing for convergence in Southeast Texas.  This is better shown at the mid levels of the atmosphere
The upper low in the Atlantic is not moving and neither is the high in the Southeast.  As result of the upper low in the Rockies which dr…