Thursday, July 26, 2018

National Weather Service Confirms 2 Separate Tornadoes in the Blackstone Valley

The National Weather Service in Norton has confirmed that two separate tornadoes touched down in the Blackstone Valley early this morning.  The twin twisters were each rated at EF-1 with winds of 100 MPH.  The first touched down in Douglas and tracked through Uxbridge and into Northbridge before lifting up around Lasell Field and Pine Grove Cemetery.  A second tornado touched down in West Upton around Main Street.

Severe weather in Southern New England is just different than the rest of the country.  Rare is the big discrete supercell thunderstorm that is common in the Midwest and Southern US.  They do happen;  the 1953 outbreak that produced the infamous EF-4 Worcester tornado and the EF-3 Sutton-Northbridge-Mendon tornado (by my records the last tornado to track through Northbridge) were classic supercell thunderstorms.  This storm was anything but.  I didn't see a single flash of lightning.  But it is consistent with a few tornadoes that have hit Massachusetts in the past few years.  The Concord, MA twister of 2017 and the Revere tornado of 2014 immediately come to mind.
  But it really does sound like a train when a tornado moves through.  As I outlined in my last post, I was lucky enough to be thirsty for a drink of water around 2 AM last night.  I always envisioned my first tornado to be in the Midwest somewhere on a chase-vacation.  I missed one in 2013 in which friends and classmates of mine were able to see a tornado in Kansas (I think).  It was pitch black so I didn't see a classic tornado but I think I'm all set seeing one now that I can see what an EF-1 tornado can do.

Here is the NWS write-up for tornado number 1.
Here is tornado number 2.

To all my new readers who joined today welcome.  I blog full time in the winter but only sporadically in spring, summer, and fall.  But when life-threatening weather hits I will also post.   Here are some pictures from Douglas, Uxbridge, and Northbridge (I covered Upton this morning before I realized what actually happened in my own backyard).



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