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TheIronSheik

2019 Spring/Summer Severe Weather

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Spring storms came slightly early this year and wreaked havoc on Alabama this past weekend.  A wedge tornado that stayed on the ground for about an hour reaching EF4 and shrinking down to an EF1.  Lead time of the warning was an hour.  

Looks like this Saturday will have the possibility of more severe weather.  Pretty much the same area:  AR, MO, LA, AL, and MS.

(Fun fact: LA and AL are one of two states that use the same two letters.)

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Looks like the area that is looking juicy Saturday will hold together and move east Sunday.  This weekend could be a wild one in the Southeast.  

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A little advice, in this day and age, everyone has the ability to have severe weather alerts send to their phone free using apps.  And these apps know where you are so they can send alerts even if you are traveling.  Everyone should have these.  

Watches = Issued over a large area where there is a good chance of severe weather

Warnings = Issued to a small area where severe weather is happening or going to happen within the next couple of minutes

What to do?

Severe Thunderstorm Watch = Issued for large areas that last several hours.  If going to be outdoors, have a plan of where to go if severe weather arrives

Severe Thunderstorm Warning = If outside, get to shelter immediately.  If inside, stay away from windows or anything with water (sink, bath, shower, etc.)

Tornado Watch = This is pretty much the same as the Severe Thunderstorm Watch with the added element that storms have the potential to spin up several tornadoes.

Tornado Warning = Get to a safe space immediately! Either a tornado has been spotted on the ground, a funnel cloud has been seen in the air, or radar is indicating that there are swirling winds that are conducive to tornado formation.  These warnings are serious business and should not be ignored.  These will be pushed through your phone even if you don't have an app pushing weather alerts.  

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4 hours ago, TheIronSheik said:

A little advice, in this day and age, everyone has the ability to have severe weather alerts send to their phone free using apps.  And these apps know where you are so they can send alerts even if you are traveling.  Everyone should have these.  

Watches = Issued over a large area where there is a good chance of severe weather

Warnings = Issued to a small area where severe weather is happening or going to happen within the next couple of minutes

What to do?

Severe Thunderstorm Watch = Issued for large areas that last several hours.  If going to be outdoors, have a plan of where to go if severe weather arrives

Severe Thunderstorm Warning = If outside, get to shelter immediately.  If inside, stay away from windows or anything with water (sink, bath, shower, etc.)

Tornado Watch = This is pretty much the same as the Severe Thunderstorm Watch with the added element that storms have the potential to spin up several tornadoes.

Tornado Warning = Get to a safe space immediately! Either a tornado has been spotted on the ground, a funnel cloud has been seen in the air, or radar is indicating that there are swirling winds that are conducive to tornado formation.  These warnings are serious business and should not be ignored.  These will be pushed through your phone even if you don't have an app pushing weather alerts.  

:goodposting:

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This weekend risk doesn't look like it will be a crazy outbreak at this point.  But it only takes one as we saw last weekend.  One thing to watch is that the atmosphere may stay unstable overnight allowing storms to remain severe even after the sun sets.  Tornadoes at night are by far the worst case scenario.  Hard to spot, which means warning times are lowered.  And on top of that, people who are asleep miss alerts that come through.  

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Been a little crazy out west, too.  You guys probably don't pay much attention to horse racing, but famed track Santa Anita has been shut down because 21 (TWENTY ONE) horses have died this season after injuries on the track, well outpacing historic averages.  Why?  Track has been deluged with rain.  It's a catastrophe for our other four legged friends (vote: save horse). 

Average historic temps in Portland, Oregon should be in the low to mid 50s right now.  We are in the 30s and have had snow/freezing rain at a time which is very rare here.  

Something is up to something. 

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18 minutes ago, General Malaise said:

Been a little crazy out west, too.  You guys probably don't pay much attention to horse racing, but famed track Santa Anita has been shut down because 21 (TWENTY ONE) horses have died this season after injuries on the track, well outpacing historic averages.  Why?  Track has been deluged with rain.  It's a catastrophe for our other four legged friends (vote: save horse). 

Average historic temps in Portland, Oregon should be in the low to mid 50s right now.  We are in the 30s and have had snow/freezing rain at a time which is very rare here.  

Something is up to something. 

The old "Pineapple Express".

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One other thing to note when it comes to "rare weather", is that rare weather happens all of the time.  It doesn't mean that something is affecting the weather.  I remember talking with a friend after Hurricane Sandy hit and they said that Sandy proved Global Warming was happening.  When I asked why, she said because it was a rare weather event.  And really I blame news media for blaming every weather event on GW.  (And I'm not arguing for or against it in here.  Not the reason for this thread.) 

But the point is, yes, it was rare.  Hurricanes that go up the east coast almost always go out to sea.  The jet stream flows west to east so it's logical to assume that it will blow the storm out to sea.  But the jet stream had a buckle in it and the bottom of the buckle moved further east than the top of the buckle.  This happens all of the time all over the globe.  Not rare.  But a hurricane timing it perfectly to hit the bottom of the buckle which would pull the storm back west?  I mean, that is crazy timing.  Doesn't happen that often.  Pretty rare.  But, the hurricane is not rare.  And the negatively tilted trough is not rare.  It is just the timing of the 2 that makes it rare.  No other outside forces.

If I roll a 20 sided die each time I see a car, I might go years before I see a roll of 19 when a black Maserati drives by.  But no outside effect had anything to do with that result.  

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40 minutes ago, General Malaise said:

Been a little crazy out west, too.  You guys probably don't pay much attention to horse racing, but famed track Santa Anita has been shut down because 21 (TWENTY ONE) horses have died this season after injuries on the track, well outpacing historic averages.  Why?  Track has been deluged with rain.  It's a catastrophe for our other four legged friends (vote: save horse). 

Average historic temps in Portland, Oregon should be in the low to mid 50s right now.  We are in the 30s and have had snow/freezing rain at a time which is very rare here.  

Something is up to something. 

I was reading about this the other day. That's crazy. Poor horsies. :( 

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MN and NM

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Don't know if this has anything to do with anything but the jet stream has been unusually fast lately. My flight from Denver to DC Tuesday only took 2:30. That rules. And apparently a Virgin Atlantic 787 set at record at 801 mph recently.

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20 minutes ago, Apple Jack said:

Don't know if this has anything to do with anything but the jet stream has been unusually fast lately. My flight from Denver to DC Tuesday only took 2:30. That rules. And apparently a Virgin Atlantic 787 set at record at 801 mph recently.

It's been very "flat" this winter.  It's the same reason there have been no big Nor'easters this winter.  Everything that comes ashore from the Pacific zooms straight across the country and out to sea.  

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Call me crazy but I miss living in a location with actual weather.  SoCal "weather" is SO BORING.  68 and partly cloudy 75% of the time.  We've had a good bit of rain in 2019, but no thunderstorms.  I want to move back to TX or maybe even LA.  I know, I'm weird.  

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Saturday's bulls-eye is going to be right along the AL-AR border.  The thought is that if we see tornadoes, the atmosphere would be ideal for large tornadoes to form.  

If you live in this area, you should pay very close attention to weather alerts on Saturday.   

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On 3/8/2019 at 7:51 AM, TheIronSheik said:

Saturday's bulls-eye is going to be right along the AL-AR border.  The thought is that if we see tornadoes, the atmosphere would be ideal for large tornadoes to form.  

If you live in this area, you should pay very close attention to weather alerts on Saturday.   

where, now?

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On 3/9/2019 at 11:31 AM, Nathan R. Jessep said:

where, now?

This is what happens when you type something out, go back and edit it, and then don't proof read it.  :lol:

Originally, I had typed out a much larger area including a couple states and then decided to go back and just narrow it down to make it more concise.  Bang up job on that one. TIS.

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You have to love Colorado weather. It is 60 degrees outside now and we are less than 24 hours from what they are calling one of strongest blizzards to hit Colorado in decades coming. 

And then it will be in the 50’s two days later. 

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The Lee County Alabama tornado cut through the Georgia border about 6 miles south of my house.  What is sad is that people in our county(Harris County, GA) are posting photos on facebook that they found scattered about. One is the family of one of the ladies( http://www.wsfa.com/2019/03/06/longtime-east-alabama-medical-center-nurse-among-victims-tornado/ ) who died in Lee County, AL - which is about 20 miles away. It was really sad seeing the photos like that and someone subsequently realizing it belonged to her. There is a facebook page where people are posting a lot of the lost and found items from the homes that were torn up. Just be careful out there.

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I was reading an article the other day about the tornadoes from 2 weeks ago.  

The SPC began outlining the potential area for the severe weather 5 days in advance.  3 days in advance, they began warning that the area would see a very good chance for large tornadoes.  Several hours before, the SPC issued a mesoscale discussion outlining the exact area that needed to be concerned for large tornadoes.  An hour later, a Tornado Watch was issued for the area.  An hour before the the tornado went through the town killing people, a Tornado Warning was issued for that area. 

Yet when they asked people in the town, many said there was no warning before the tornadoes hit.

 

It makes you think.  Does it matter how much warning is given?  Do people understand the warnings?  And are all of these warnings understood by the public?

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3 hours ago, TheIronSheik said:

It makes you think.  Does it matter how much warning is given?  Do people understand the warnings?  And are all of these warnings understood by the public?

I don't know if people take warnings seriously anymore or as seriously as they should.  When I was a kid, if the siren blew that meant a tornado was in the area and you headed to the basement.  Now if the siren blows people head outside to get a video.  I know this because I'm usually outside also.  :oldunsure: 

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Just now, illiterate said:

I don't know if people take warnings seriously anymore or as seriously as they should.  When I was a kid, if the siren blew that meant a tornado was in the area and you headed to the basement.  Now if the siren blows people head outside to get a video.  I know this because I'm usually outside also.  :oldunsure: 

That's a good point.  Unfortunately, with most warnings, people who live through them almost always say they had no idea it would be that bad.  You can show the death and destruction of a tornado and 9 out of 10 people think, "Wow.  Wish I could have been there to video that."

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I didn't know much about it - I sat in my media room watching a NHL Centre Ice game from Colorado. I don't really watch the local news because it sucks - it's total amateur hour. Only after the hockey game did I switch over to Fox and the NASCAR Race and see what had happened. My phone was up in my office - it had 1 alert. People aren't as "in-tune" with what is happening locally with the number of places you can turn to for info.

The area that got hit is not really a "town" - its a loose conglomeration of rural roads with large farm/ranches - and side roads here and there.  A siren in the "area" doesn't really get heard.  These were for the most part mobile homes and manufactured homes with no where for people to go when it gets bad. That is what doomed these people. Most are lower income groups and they can't afford shelters. It ripped right through our county(Harris County GA) and people were complaining that they never heard a siren. Luckily we aren't as populated as the Lee County side(Being close to Auburn/Opelika) - we are mostly Georgia Paper tree farms and that is what caused our main problem was giant pine trees being knocked down especially with all the rain we have had this spring.

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7 minutes ago, ffldrew said:

I didn't know much about it - I sat in my media room watching a NHL Centre Ice game from Colorado. I don't really watch the local news because it sucks - it's total amateur hour. Only after the hockey game did I switch over to Fox and the NASCAR Race and see what had happened. My phone was up in my office - it had 1 alert. People aren't as "in-tune" with what is happening locally with the number of places you can turn to for info.

The area that got hit is not really a "town" - its a loose conglomeration of rural roads with large farm/ranches - and side roads here and there.  A siren in the "area" doesn't really get heard.  These were for the most part mobile homes and manufactured homes with no where for people to go when it gets bad. That is what doomed these people. Most are lower income groups and they can't afford shelters. It ripped right through our county(Harris County GA) and people were complaining that they never heard a siren. Luckily we aren't as populated as the Lee County side(Being close to Auburn/Opelika) - we are mostly Georgia Paper tree farms and that is what caused our main problem was giant pine trees being knocked down especially with all the rain we have had this spring.

But even the poorest people have phones nowadays.  And tornado alerts go off based on your GPS location even without apps installed.

As for where to go, that's another problem.  

 

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1 hour ago, TheIronSheik said:

But even the poorest people have phones nowadays.  And tornado alerts go off based on your GPS location even without apps installed.

As for where to go, that's another problem.  

 

I read some of the stories about the victims - I believe a couple of them worked late shifts at the car plants/hospital/etc and were sleeping. They may have ignored it or maybe it wasn't in the room with them to stir them up.

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1 hour ago, Bucky86 said:

This blizzard is crazy here in Denver. :scared: 

Yep the wind here in Colorado Springs is just shaking the house. Gusts over 97 mph just recorded here. Every major road closed.  Lights flickering on and off. I told the family to prepare for PB&Js for dinner. ;)

This is a powerful storm and I can only imagine the damage it is going to cause as it marches across the country. 

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1 minute ago, Courtjester said:

Yep the wind here in Colorado Springs is just shaking the house. Gusts over 97 mph just recorded here. Every major road closed.  Lights flickering on and off. I told the family to prepare for PB&Js for dinner. ;)

This is a powerful storm and I can only imagine the damage it is going to cause as it marches across the country. 

Eeesh. I'm in Denver and I can hardly see the houses behind me from my balcony. Sirens going like crazy. Feels like the zombie apocalypse. Lights are flickering, but still have power..for now.

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7 minutes ago, Bucky86 said:

Eeesh. I'm in Denver and I can hardly see the houses behind me from my balcony. Sirens going like crazy. Feels like the zombie apocalypse. Lights are flickering, but still have power..for now.

We have lost power twice already.  

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It is important to note that with the current weather pattern, the setup is perfect for severe weather outbreaks in the southeast this spring.  The past couple springs have been relatively quiet on severe spring weather, but this setup could change that.  

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11 minutes ago, Bucky86 said:

Eeesh. I'm in Denver and I can hardly see the houses behind me from my balcony. Sirens going like crazy. Feels like the zombie apocalypse. Lights are flickering, but still have power..for now.

It's been a crazy day.  Current Nebraska 511 map.   The roads in the west are closed for snow.  The roads in the east are closed for flooding.  My normal route home is closed (flooding), and they are close to closing my best alternate route.  If the alternate route is closed I'm looking at a 3 hour commute.

We will get the high winds tomorrow.

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It is days like these that makes me realize how ill prepared I am if anything major were to happen. I am looking at all our food options and every main meal we have needs to be cooked or microwaved.  I could grill, but going outside is not smart at this point.  I have a Coleman camp stove I could fire up I guess :P

As a Colorado native, we used to say we can't wait for Spring and get past all the snow and ice, but after last year and the hail we aren't so sure what to be hoping for.  Being displaced from our house and living in a hotel for half the summer due to baseball/softball sized hail absolutely destroying our place and cars was not fun. 

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9 minutes ago, illiterate said:

It's been a crazy day.  Current Nebraska 511 map.   The roads in the west are closed for snow.  The roads in the east are closed for flooding.  My normal route home is closed (flooding), and they are close to closing my best alternate route.  If the alternate route is closed I'm looking at a 3 hour commute.

We will get the high winds tomorrow.

Our isn't much better it seems.

 https://www.cotrip.org/map.htm#/default?TravelAlertId=298980

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48 minutes ago, Courtjester said:

This is a powerful storm and I can only imagine the damage it is going to cause as it marches across the country. 

At this point, it shouldn't be too bad.  A SLIGHT risk for a long swath of the MI-MS border.  Just kidding.  But from MI to MS, there's a chance of severe weather.  But no big outbreaks.  

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On 3/7/2019 at 11:02 AM, TheIronSheik said:

One other thing to note when it comes to "rare weather", is that rare weather happens all of the time.  It doesn't mean that something is affecting the weather.  I remember talking with a friend after Hurricane Sandy hit and they said that Sandy proved Global Warming was happening.  When I asked why, she said because it was a rare weather event.  And really I blame news media for blaming every weather event on GW.  (And I'm not arguing for or against it in here.  Not the reason for this thread.) 

But the point is, yes, it was rare.  Hurricanes that go up the east coast almost always go out to sea.  The jet stream flows west to east so it's logical to assume that it will blow the storm out to sea.  But the jet stream had a buckle in it and the bottom of the buckle moved further east than the top of the buckle.  This happens all of the time all over the globe.  Not rare.  But a hurricane timing it perfectly to hit the bottom of the buckle which would pull the storm back west?  I mean, that is crazy timing.  Doesn't happen that often.  Pretty rare.  But, the hurricane is not rare.  And the negatively tilted trough is not rare.  It is just the timing of the 2 that makes it rare.  No other outside forces.

If I roll a 20 sided die each time I see a car, I might go years before I see a roll of 19 when a black Maserati drives by.  But no outside effect had anything to do with that result.  

Kinda funny...If there is a hurricane, it is due to climate change

If there is a big snowstorm or a large cold spell, it cant be climate change because one event does not define climate change.   Weather is not climate!

The hypocrisy sometimes is silly.

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6 minutes ago, supermike80 said:

Kinda funny...If there is a hurricane, it is due to climate change

If there is a big snowstorm or a large cold spell, it cant be climate change because one event does not define climate change.   Weather is not climate!

The hypocrisy sometimes is silly.

Not really.

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15 hours ago, supermike80 said:

Kinda funny...If there is a hurricane, it is due to climate change

If there is a big snowstorm or a large cold spell, it cant be climate change because one event does not define climate change.   Weather is not climate!

The hypocrisy sometimes is silly.

If I understand what you're saying, you're 100% correct.  The same group that screams one event doesn't disprove/prove climate change will just as quick point to another event to make the opposite claim.  

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The area that was listed as SLIGHT yesterday got a slight bump in spots to ENHANCED.  Mainly in the Ohio and Tennessee valleys.  I think it's out of an abundance of caution, but it'll take the perfect setup to get it too bad.  Still, the line of storms moving east should be fairly strong.

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19 minutes ago, TheIronSheik said:

If I understand what you're saying, you're 100% correct.  The same group that screams one event doesn't disprove/prove climate change will just as quick point to another event to make the opposite claim.  

And to those that are getting offended--this isn't me denying climate change.....Least not in this thread.

I just find it hypocritical.  And i will call that out when I see it.

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18 minutes ago, supermike80 said:

And to those that are getting offended--this isn't me denying climate change.....Least not in this thread.

I just find it hypocritical.  And i will call that out when I see it.

Both sides are guilty of doing it.  Not everyone.  But people from both sides are definitely guilty of this.  I see it all the time.

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1 minute ago, TheIronSheik said:

Both sides are guilty of doing it.  Not everyone.  But people from both sides are definitely guilty of this.  I see it all the time.

Sure are.....Doesn't matter what "side" youre on....it happens a lot.  

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So this is kind of odd.  I had to refresh my screen a couple of times because you don't see things like this often.  There's a Tornado Watch for that same pesky AR-AL border ;) right now.  But half of that area isn't even listed in the MARGINAL risk area for today.  (MARGINAL being the lowest level of the severe scale.)

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Another bit of info that gets kind of lost and I think confuses people is: What makes a thunderstorm "Severe" by NWS standards?

Most people would assume lightning would be high on that list.  But this is why it's confusing.  There are two factors that for a storm to be considered SEVERE and only one of the two has to be met:

1) Hail that is 1 inch in diameter or larger

2) Winds of 58 mph or greater (nice round number)

That's it.  Lightning is considered severe no matter what so it's ASSUMED that every thunderstorm would reach that criteria.  But in fact, it become confusing because we can see (usually in the fall) a line of strong storms (notice I didn't say thunderstorms) roll through that will meet the wind requirements for severe.  So it is possible to have a Severe THUNDERstorm Warning with absolutely no thunder.  Totally makes sense, right?

Truth is, if you can hear thunder, get to shelter.  Lightning is dangerous no matter what time of year it is.  And lightning can strike over 20 miles away from where the thunderhead is.  People die every year from lightning strikes in areas that have clear blue skies.  They call it "Lightning From the Blue."  

Also, there is no such thing as "Heat Lightning."  What you are seeing is actually real lightning from a storm hundreds of miles away due to the curvature of the earth. (Suck on that, flat earthers!)  It's easily seen at night because the sky lights up.  But if you are seeing the sky flash in PA one summer night, it could actually be a thunderstorm happening in TN.  

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