2011: Year of the Tornado

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:25 PM GMT on December 27, 2011

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The year 2011 will forever be known as Year of the Tornado in the U.S. A series of violent severe storms swept across the Plains and Southeast U.S., bringing an astonishing six billion-dollar disasters in a three-month period. The epic tornado onslaught killed 552 people and caused $25 billion in damage. Three of the five largest tornado outbreaks on record hit in a six-week period, including the largest and most expensive tornado outbreak in U.S. history--the $10.2 billion dollar Southeast U.S. Super Outbreak, April 25 - 28. Even more stunning was the $9 billion late-May tornado outbreak that brought an EF-5 tornado to Joplin, Missouri. The Joplin tornado did $3 billion in damage and killed 158 people--the largest death toll from a U.S. tornado since 1947, seventh deadliest tornado in U.S. history, and the most expensive tornado in world history. In a year of amazing weather extremes, this year's tornado season ranks as the top U.S. weather story of 2011.


Video 1. Remarkable video of the tornado that hit Tuscaloosa, Alabama on April 27, 2011. Fast forward to minute four to see the worst of the storm.



Figure 1. A truly frightening radar image: multiple hook echoes from at least ten supercell thunderstorms cover Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee during the height of the April 27, 2011 Super Outbreak. A multi-hour animation is available here.

A record six EF-5 tornadoes confirmed in 2011
Six top-end EF-5 tornadoes hit the U.S. in 2011, tying this year with 1974 for the greatest number of these most destructive tornadoes. The EF-5 tornadoes of 2011:

1) The April 27, 2011 Neshoba/Kemper/Winston/Noxubee Counties, Mississippi tornado (3 killed, 29 mile path length.)

2) The April 27, 2011 Smithville, Mississippi tornado (22 killed, 15 mile path length.)

3) The April 27, 2011 Hackleburg, Alabama tornado (71 killed, 25 mile path length.)

4) The April 27, 2011 Rainsville/Dekalb County, Alabama tornado (26 killed, 34 mile path length.)

5) The May 22, 2011 Joplin Missouri tornado (158 killed, 14 mile path length.)

6) The May 24, 2011 Binger-El Reno-Peidmont-Guthrie, Oklahoma tornado. (9 killed, 75 mile path length.)


Figure 2. Aerial view of damage from the May 22, 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado. Image credit: Wikipedia.


Figure 3. EF-5 damage from the April 27, 2011 Neshoba tornado in Mississippi. The tornado was so powerful that it dug out the ground to a depth of two feet over an area 25 - 50 yards wide and several hundred yards long. Image credit: NWS.

A few other remarkable statistics on the tornado season of 2011, compiled from NOAA's official press release, the NOAA Extreme Weather 2011 page, and Wikipedia's excellent tornado pages:

- The tornado death toll of 552 in 2011 ties 1936 as the second deadliest year for tornadoes in U.S. history. Only 1925, with 794 fatalities, was deadlier. In 1936, violent tornadoes hit Tupelo Mississippi (216 killed), and Gainesville, Georgia (203 killed.) During the 1930s, the tornado death rate per million people was 60 - 70 times as great as in the year 2000 (Figure 4), implying that this year's tornadoes may have killed tens of thousands of people if we did not have our modern tornado modern warning system.


Figure 4. Death rate per million people per year in U.S., 1875-2011. Thin line with dots is raw rate, curved thick line is death rate, filtered by 3-point median and 5-point running mean filter, and straight solid lines are least squares fit to filtered death rate for 1875-1925 and 1925-2011. Dashed lines are estimates of 10th and 90th percentile death rates from 1925-2000. The death rate fell from 8 per million to .12 per million between 1940 and 2010. Image credit: A Brief History of Deaths from Tornadoes in the United States, Harold Brooks and Charles Doswell III, and updated by Harold Brooks in 2011.

- April 2011 had the most tornadoes of any month in U.S. history--753. The previous record was 542, set in May 2003. The previous busiest April was in 1974, with 267 tornadoes. The average number of tornadoes for the month of April during the past decade was 161, and the 30-year average for April tornadoes was 135.

- On April 27, 199 confirmed tornadoes touched down. This is the largest 1-day tornado total on record, beating the 148 recorded in 24 hours on April 3 - 4, 1974.

The year 2011 now has three of the top five tornado outbreaks on record (note, though, that reliable records for number of tornadoes only extend back in time to about the early 1990s):

- The April 25 - 28, 2011 Super tornado outbreak, with 343 tornadoes, is now the largest tornado outbreak in U.S. history. The previous record (3 days or less duration) was 148 tornadoes, set during the April 3 - 4, 1974 Super Outbreak.

- The May 22 - 27, 2011 tornado outbreak, with 180 confirmed tornadoes, ranks as the 4th largest 6-day or shorter tornado outbreak on record. A May 2003 6-day outbreak had 289 tornadoes, and a May 2004 6-day outbreak had 229 tornadoes.

- The April 14 - 16, 2011 tornado outbreak, with 177 confirmed tornadoes, ranks as the second largest tornado outbreak of three days or less duration on record, and 5th largest outbreak of six or fewer days duration.

- The May 22, 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado killed 158 people and injured 1150, making it the deadliest U.S. tornado since 1947, and 7th deadliest in history. The $3 billion estimate of insured damage makes it the most expensive tornado in world history.

- Preliminary damage estimates from Munich Re insurance company put 2011's insured losses due to U.S. thunderstorms and tornadoes at $25 billion, more than double the previous record set in 2010.

- The year 2011 now ranks in 2nd place behind 1973 for greatest number of tornadoes greater than EF-0 strength (EF-1, EF-2, EF-3, EF-4 and EF-5 strength, Figure 5.)


Figure 5. Number of EF-1, EF-2, EF-3, EF-4 and EF-5 tornadoes from 1950 to 2011. The total shown for 2011 is preliminary and uses unofficial numbers through November 17, but 2011 now ranks in 2nd place behind 1973. There is not a decades-long increasing trend in the numbers of tornadoes stronger than EF-0, implying that climate change, as yet, is not having a noticeable impact on U.S. tornadoes. However, statistics of tornado frequency and intensity are highly uncertain. Major changes in the rating process occurred in the mid-1970s (when all tornadoes occurring prior to about 1975 were retrospectively rated), and again in 2001, when scientists began rating tornadoes lower because of engineering concerns and unintended consequences of National Weather Service policy changes. Also, beginning in 2007, NOAA switched from the F-scale to the EF-scale for rating tornado damage, causing additional problems with attempting to assess if tornadoes are changing over time. Data provided by Harold Brooks, NOAA/National Severe Storms Laboratory.

Other posts looking back at the remarkable weather events of 2011
Deadliest weather disaster of 2011: the East African drought
Tropical Storm Lee's flood in Binghamton: was global warming the final straw?
Wettest year on record in Philadelphia; 2011 sets record for wet/dry extremes in U.S.
Hurricane Irene: New York City dodges a potential storm surge mega-disaster

The NWS posted a summary of the records set during the tornado season of 2011 in February 2012.

Jeff Masters

Joplin Tornado Damage (thebige)
Joplin Tornado Damage
Tornado - Pine Apple,AL (EarlBcom)
Tornado just south of Pine Apple, AL on around 5:40pm. This storm was a part of the Alabama tornado outbreak on April 15, 2011. earlb.com VIDEO - See video of tornado at earlb.com
Tornado - Pine Apple,AL
As Is (teach50)
My husband and I were visiting my parents in Birmingham, Alabama. We decided to take a day trip to Tuscaloosa to see the damage from the April 27 tornado. It was a sight that I will never forget. Blocks and blocks of flattened houses and stores. This area has not been touched in 2 months. It was so moving that I started to cry thinking of all these poor people.
As Is

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Quoting SPLbeater:


sounds like my story lol. wants alot of activity but dont want any1 hurt. guess thats why 2010 was nice
09 was just...dead.At the supposed "height of the season" there was no cyclones to track.Even 06 had two tropical cyclones to track at that same time.Seeing less damage but more tropical cylones is always a plus in my book.
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Quoting SPLbeater:


im sure you have heard 'The Richelieu Apartment and Hurricane Camille' story?


If that was the infamous hurricane party place then yes.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 253
Miami NWS Discussion

EXTENDED FORECAST...
FOR THE FIRST WEEK OF 2012...A COLD FRONT WILL MOVE THROUGH SOUTH
FLORIDA BETWEEN MONDAY AND TUESDAY. THE ECMWF LONG RANGE MODEL IS NOW
SHOWING VERY COLD AIR BEHIND THIS FRONT MOVING INTO SOUTH FLORIDA
FOR THE MIDDLE TO END OF NEXT WEEK WITH THE 850 MB TEMPS GETTING
DOWN TO 0C TO -3C. HOWEVER...THE LONG RANGE GFS MODEL IS SHOWING
THE VERY COLD AIR WILL MOVE TO THE EAST INSTEAD OF SOUTH INTO THE
AREA WITH THE 850 MB TEMP ONLY GETTING DOWN TO 3C. SO UNTIL THE
LONG RANGE MODELS COME MORE IN LINE WITH EACH OTHER WILL GO THE
MIDDLE OF THE ROAD FOR TEMPS...AND THE HIGHS WILL BE IN THE 70S
WITH LOWS IN THE 40S INTERIOR AND WEST COAST METRO AREAS TO 50S
EAST COAST METRO AREAS.
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11512
Quoting washingtonian115:
I just pray we won't have a season like 09 again...Gawwwwd no.I mean with hardly no tropical cyclones to track it does lower the risk of someone being hit but I love tracking tropical cyclones.And I do agree seeing two in the atlantic again at the same time should be fun :).


sounds like my story lol. wants alot of activity but dont want any1 hurt. guess thats why 2010 was nice
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
Quoting AtHomeInTX:




Ummmmm...not exactly.


im sure you have heard 'The Richelieu Apartment and Hurricane Camille' story?
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
Cyclone Thane 180000Z

CI# /Pressure/ Vmax
4.4 / 981.8mb/ 74.6kt

Raw T# 3.6
Adj T# 4.4
Final T# 4.4

Scene Type: UNIFORM CDO CLOUD REGION
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
206. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Mauritius Meteorological Services
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #3
DEPRESSION TROPICALE 04-20112012
22:00 PM RET December 28 2011
===================================

At 18:00 PM UTC, Tropical Depression 04 (999 hPa) located at 12.0S 87.6E has 10 minute sustained winds of 30 knots with gusts of 45 knots. The depression is reported as moving west at 12 knots.

Dvorak Intensity: T2.5/2.5/S0.5/18 HRS

Near Gale Force Winds
=====================

90 NM radius from the center extending up to 150 NM in the southwestern semi-circle

Forecast and Intensity
=====================

12 HRS: 12.2S 85.5E - 35 knots (Tempête Tropicale Moderée)
24 HRS: 12.5S 83.2E - 40 knots (Tempête Tropicale Moderée)
48 HRS: 13.4S 79.2E - 50 knots (Forte Tempête Tropicale)
72 HRS: 14.9S 76.0E - 65 knots (CYCLONE Tropical)

Additional Information
=======================

The cloud pattern of the disturbance has little changed, the low level circulation is still on the eastern border of the cloud mass of deep convection. The low level flow pattern seems to be rather ill-defined. (CF SSMIS 37ghz at 14:00 PM UTC). Lower levels supply is currently good on the two faces of the system. However, system is still undergoing a moderate upper level east vertical wind shear.

The upper level constraint should progressively weaken within the next 36-48 hours. At 48 hours, an upper outflow channel should set up poleward. A second upper outflow should temporarily set up equatorward on Saturday and Sunday. Intensification should also remain moderate within the next 36 hours, but should heighten beyond. At the end of the forecast range (beginning of next week) upper level environmental conditions should become less favorable (strengthening of the upper level wind shear).

Available numerical weather prediction models are in good agreement for a west to southwestward track over the northern periphery of the subtropical high pressure and low and mid-troposphere.

The next tropical cyclone advisory from Mauritius Meteorological Services on Tropical Depression 04 will be issued at 0:30 AM UTC..
Member Since: May 24, 2006 Posts: 52 Comments: 46522
Quoting snowballing:

Interesting perspective. And hope you are correct. I not only would not mind another year with a similar pattern for my own personal weather tastes, but also to really get a good chance to examine two full tropical weather seasons in the Atlantic Basin under the pattern.

I'll bookmark this link. Thanks Skyepony.
I just pray we won't have a season like 09 again...Gawwwwd no.I mean with hardly no tropical cyclones to track it does lower the risk of someone being hit but I love tracking tropical cyclones.And I do agree seeing two in the atlantic again at the same time should be fun :).
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Quoting kwgirl:
Hi all. I wonder how chilly it will get in the Keys. Not that we need to worry about snow falling, it's the iguanas. They tend to fall out of the trees when it gets cold. I don't want to be hit with one of them LOL.


Min. Temps 1/4

Max. Temps 1/4
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11512

Quoting DavidHOUTX:


That is a great plan for Hurricanes and Blizzards. I rarely see measurable snow down here in SE Texas but we do get Hurricanes and when the come, it's party time!



Ummmmm...not exactly.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 253
Quoting Skyepony:


Though La Nia can't stay in place forever I don't think we've seen the peak yet. ESPI has plummeted to -1.61. I'm somewhere between the NASA GMAO outlier & the rest of the pack. Maybe neutral by height of season next year, hard to say with much confidence til La Nia peaks.

Interesting perspective. And hope you are correct. I not only would not mind another year with a similar pattern for my own personal weather tastes, but also to really get a good chance to examine two full tropical weather seasons in the Atlantic Basin under the pattern.

I'll bookmark this link. Thanks Skyepony.
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Hi all. I wonder how chilly it will get in the Keys. Not that we need to worry about snow falling, it's the iguanas. They tend to fall out of the trees when it gets cold. I don't want to be hit with one of them LOL.
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some real cold is comming to the east next week. ;).I'm real happy.Our high on Tuesday is suppose to only be in it's mid-upper 30's.Finally...
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Quoting palmbaywhoo:

wasn't that your plan for hurricanes too?


That is a great plan for Hurricanes and Blizzards. I rarely see measurable snow down here in SE Texas but we do get Hurricanes and when the come, it's party time!
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Quoting IceCoast:


00z ECMWF 2mAG shows conditions 2 meters above the surface. This is the 180hr forecast. The Color fill portrays Temperature.



Full Size
Link


2 meters=6'6" above the surface!

If the euro continues this trend, we could see lows dipping between 18-25 degrees fairenhight come Wednesday and Thursday morning in ECF(probably a few degrees warmer in urbans centers)!
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Quoting palmbaywhoo:

wasn't that your plan for hurricanes too?


well....ah....well...
Member Since: August 13, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10492
Quoting presslord:
the only rational thing to do when it snows is drink heavily...therefore, snow causes alcoholism...therefore, snow is evil...

wasn't that your plan for hurricanes too?
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the only rational thing to do when it snows is drink heavily...therefore, snow causes alcoholism...therefore, snow is evil...
Member Since: August 13, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10492
194. Skyepony (Mod)
Quoting snowballing:
We'll see what the future holds with La Nina. It can't stay in place forever. Link


Though La Niña can't stay in place forever I don't think we've seen the peak yet. ESPI has plummeted to -1.61. I'm somewhere between the NASA GMAO outlier & the rest of the pack. Maybe neutral by height of season next year, hard to say with much confidence til La Niña peaks.
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Quoting weatherbro:


What does an 850 MB temp of -8 translate to the surface for highs and lows(according to the 00z Euro, that line is expected to reach around Disney by Tuesday/Wednesday)?


00z ECMWF 2mAG shows conditions 2 meters above the surface. This is the 180hr forecast. The Color fill portrays Temperature.



Full Size
Link
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Quoting snowballing:

I'm not entirely sure (ST2K would know for sure), but I'm willing to guess that translates into some below or near freezing temps for Central Florida for lows. Probably not nearly as extreme as what that region experienced last December (2010) though...

This time last year we already had 3 cold snaps of below freezing already. Will be nice to have my new plants for a few more weeks at least
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Quoting IceCoast:


It was definitely something else. I don't recall seeing such an isolated and perfect looking supercell like that too often up here. The very few tornadoes we do get usually occur embedded in severe lines of thunderstorms.

The tornado that struck Worcester, MA back in 1953 was an EF-4, and i've heard some crazy stories about that one. Of course, back then Meteorological Radar was in it's primitive stages.

Wiki Link-1953 Worcester Tornado
Link

Right, exactly. Those large, wedge tornadoes that drop out of mesocyclonic supercells generally are not accustomed to that region like they are in the Great Plains. Most are embedded within straight-line winds of a bow-echoeing squall line.

Thanks for the link. Would have killed to have seen that 1953 monster on Doppler though!!
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Quoting snowballing:

Very rare to experience a twister of such strength impacting a geographical area (Massachusetts) that far north. What a year of the tornado it truly has been...


It was definitely something else. I don't recall seeing such an isolated and perfect looking supercell like that too often up here. The very few tornadoes we do get usually occur embedded in severe lines of thunderstorms.

The tornado that struck Worcester, MA back in 1953 was an EF-4, and i've heard some crazy stories about that one. Of course, back then Meteorological Radar was in it's primitive stages.

Assumption College, Worcester



Wiki Link-1953 Worcester Tornado
Link
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Quoting weatherbro:


What does an 850 MB temp of -8 translate to the surface for highs and lows(according to the 00z Euro, that line is expected to reach around Disney by Tuesday/Wednesday)?

I'm not entirely sure (ST2K would know for sure), but I'm willing to guess that translates into some below or near freezing temps for Central Florida for lows. Probably not nearly as extreme as what that region experienced last December (2010) though...
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I see almost all of the weather forecasters (weather.com, accuweather, weatherbug etc...) are dropping any chance of snow for the PA area next week... very cold air but no white stuff
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Quoting StormTracker2K:


Man the Euro has one heck of a cold snap for the east. The OZ Euro below.



What does an 850 MB temp of -8 translate to the surface for highs and lows(according to the 00z Euro, that line is expected to reach around Disney by Tuesday/Wednesday)?
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186. BDAwx
Quoting Neapolitan:

There are a (luckily decreasing) number of people convinced against all logic that caring for our environment makes one a socialist ala Stalin. You know: imposing fuel consumption standards, say, or asking Big Energy to divert just a tiny portion of its hundreds of billions of dollars in annual highly destructive profit toward researching alternate forms of energy generation = door-smashing, jack-booted fascism. Or something like that.

Some folks would do themselves a favor by switching from the (un)fair and (anything but) balanced network. At least once in a while...


I see. I'm highly concerned for humanity. :|

Meanwhile, I find it very disturbing that humans likely have altered the Earth enough to begin to have consequential effects (eg. climate change).
Member Since: August 3, 2009 Posts: 51 Comments: 545
Quoting SPLbeater:


the thing for me is, i dont want anything below 40 unless there is some of that powdery white stuff on the ground. LOL

At least then, there's stuff to do! Or I guess if you don't have to drive it in, you can take in the beauty...

There's also snowmobiling and skiing, but I'm doubting there's very many folks in your neck of the woods with Ski-Do's, Arctic Cats and Paloris snowmobiles ready to fire up!! lol

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HPC Days 1-3 sure has the PAC Northwest's number.

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Quoting snowballing:

For central NC, absolutely.

For me, it doesn't matter whether I'm visiting friends in the Lone Star state in late November or fishing up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan on a calm early May morning; - anything barely above the freezing mark (Fahrenheit) is cold!!


the thing for me is, i dont want anything below 40 unless there is some of that powdery white stuff on the ground. LOL
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
Quoting SPLbeater:


GFS forecasting 33 where im at in central NC...and that, is cold for me! a high of 33!

For central NC, absolutely.

For me, it doesn't matter whether I'm visiting friends in the Lone Star state in late November or fishing up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan on a calm early May morning; - anything barely above the freezing mark (Fahrenheit) is cold!!
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From the National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office in Chicago, IL...

Rather interesting, considering the brutal winter Chicago experienced last year, including the Great Chicago Blizzard that stranded thousands of motorists up and down Lake Shore Drive. Of course, that event was on February 2nd.

Nonetheless, the Windy City is yet another upon the long list of northern destinations lacking the white stuff.

Also funny to see visible satellite images of the upper Midwest (MN, WI, and the Dakotas) without any snow cover present on the ground at the moment.

Chicago Temperature Plot:


Rockford Temperature Plot:


From the Chicago, IL NWS Office:

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CHICAGO IL
556 AM CST WED DEC 28 2011 /656 AM EST WED DEC 28 2011/

...NUMBER OF DECEMBER 40 DEGREE DAYS COMPARED TO THE RECORDS AND
WHAT IT MIGHT MEAN GOING FORWARD...

WHILE THE AVERAGE HIGH ON THE 1ST OF DECEMBER IS AROUND 40
DEGREES IN CHICAGO AND ROCKFORD...THAT AVERAGE FALLS ALMOST TEN
DEGREES BY THE END OF THE MONTH. THIS DECEMBER HAS NOT FOLLOWED
THAT CLIMATOLOGICAL DECLINE...CONTINUING TO SEE 40S AND EVEN A FEW
50S THROUGH THE MONTH.


CHICAGO...

THROUGH DECEMBER 27TH...17 DAYS HAVE REACHED AT LEAST 40 DEGREES
THIS MONTH COMPARED TO THE DECEMBER AVERAGE OF TEN. THIS IS TIED
FOR THE 19TH MOST IN DECEMBER SINCE 1872. GIVEN FORECAST
TEMPERATURES THROUGH THE NEXT FOUR DAYS...THREE MORE DAYS IN AT
LEAST THE 40S ARE EXPECTED. THIS WOULD PLACE CHICAGO AT 20 DAYS
THIS MONTH WHICH WOULD TIE FOR 6TH MOST IN DECEMBER. OF THE FIVE
DECEMBERS THAT WOULD RANK HIGHER...FOUR OF THEM WERE PRIOR TO 1942
WHEN THE OFFICIAL OBSERVING SITE WAS DOWNTOWN. THE MOST NUMBER OF
40 DEGREE OR WARMER DAYS OBSERVED IN A DECEMBER WAS 26 IN 1923.

LOOKING AT THIS FACTOID GOING FORWARD...WHAT MIGHT THIS MEAN FOR
JANUARY AND FEBRUARY? ON AVERAGE...THE REST OF METEOROLOGICAL
WINTER SEES 16 DAYS OF 40 DEGREES OR WARMER. THE NUMBER OF 40
DEGREE DAYS OBSERVED THE REST OF WINTER AFTER THE HIGHER RANKING
DECEMBERS THAN 2011 SO FAR WAS 20. AS FOR THE TOP FIVE...WHICH
ARE LIKELY THE ONLY ONES THAT WILL FINISH HIGHER...THE REST OF
WINTER AVERAGED 27 DAYS OF 40 DEGREES OR WARMER...BASICALLY ONE
HALF OF THE REST OF WINTER.


ROCKFORD...

AS OF DECEMBER 27TH...13 DAYS HAVE SEEN A HIGH TEMPERATURE OF AT
LEAST 40 DEGREES THIS MONTH COMPARED TO THE DECEMBER AVERAGE OF
EIGHT. THIS IS TIED FOR 21ST MOST SINCE 1905. GIVEN FORECAST
TEMPERATURES THROUGH THE NEXT FOUR DAYS...THREE MORE DAYS IN AT
LEAST THE 40S ARE EXPECTED. ROCKFORD WOULD THEN HAVE 16 DAYS WHICH
WOULD BOOST DECEMBER 2011 IN A TIE FOR 8TH PLACE. THE MOST NUMBER
OF 40 DEGREE OR WARMER DAYS OBSERVED IN A DECEMBER WAS 25 IN 1923.

WHAT THIS IMPLIED IN THE PAST FOR LOOKING FORWARD WAS SOMEWHAT OF
A MIXED SIGNAL FOR ROCKFORD. ON AVERAGE...JANUARY AND FEBRUARY
HAVE 13 DAYS OF 40 DEGREES OR WARMER TOTAL. THE NUMBER OF 40
DEGREE DAYS OBSERVED THE REST OF WINTER AFTER THE HIGHER RANKING
DECEMBERS THAN 2011 SO FAR WAS 15. AS FOR THE TOP SEVEN...WHICH
ARE LIKELY THE ONLY ONES THAT WILL FINISH HIGHER THAN THIS
DECEMBER...THERE ACTUALLY WAS A BELOW AVERAGE AMOUNT...WITH ONLY A
MEAN OF 12 DAYS OF 40 DEGREE OR WARMER.

$$

MTF
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Quoting snowballing:

Yep, old man winter is headed your way. It appears now that by this time next week into the latter part of next week you'll be shivering. And not that 23F is awfully cold or anything, but it'll sure feel like it from what you have been used to all through the first month of meteorological winter.


GFS forecasting 33 where im at in central NC...and that, is cold for me! a high of 33!
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488
Quoting BDAwx:
I'm sorry, what does socialism have to do with the climate change debate?

There are a (luckily decreasing) number of people convinced against all logic that caring for our environment makes one a socialist ala Stalin. You know: imposing fuel consumption standards, say, or asking Big Energy to divert just a tiny portion of its hundreds of billions of dollars in annual highly destructive profit toward researching alternate forms of energy generation = door-smashing, jack-booted fascism. Or something like that.

Some folks would do themselves a favor by switching from the (un)fair and (anything but) balanced network. At least once in a while...
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Quoting hydrus:
Here is another horrific tornado disaster ..Excerpt Wiki......The 1947 Glazier–Higgins–Woodward tornadoes was system of related tornadoes that swept through Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas on April 9, 1947. Most of the damage and all the deaths are still blamed on one large F5 tornado, known as the Glazier-Higgins-Woodward Tornado, that traveled nearly 125 miles from Texas to Oklahoma. This tornado was often compared to the Tri-State Tornado, because it was originally thought to have left a 220 mile path, but it is now believed to have a been part of a family of 5 or 6 tornadoes. These tornadoes, although deadly, did not match the astounding death toll of the earlier event, nor did they match the record speed of that tornado, although at over 40 mph (64 km/h), they qualified as a fast tracking storm.

Unreal. Wow. Thanks for sharing. I've been meaning to dig into the archives and find similar systems that spawned such fierce, long-lived monsters as the proverbial Tri-State.

And like the hospital in Joplin, MO, the courthouse still looks standing, albeit major non-structure damage. I couldn't imagine picking up all that glass.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

Regardless of whether we get the "Superstorm" the ECMWF has been predicting, it is going to get significantly colder towards the beginning/middle of next week. The HPC has a low of 23F with a high of 42F here in southeastern North Carolina on Wednesday.

Yep, old man winter is headed your way. It appears now that by this time next week into the latter part of next week you'll be shivering. And not that 23F is awfully cold or anything, but it'll sure feel like it from what you have been used to all through the first month of meteorological winter.
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Quoting snowballing:

Very rare to experience a twister of such strength impacting a geographical area (Massachusetts) that far north. What a year of the tornado it truly has been...
Here is another horrific tornado disaster ..Excerpt Wiki......The 1947 Glazier–Higgins–Woodward tornadoes was system of related tornadoes that swept through Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas on April 9, 1947. Most of the damage and all the deaths are still blamed on one large F5 tornado, known as the Glazier-Higgins-Woodward Tornado, that traveled nearly 125 miles from Texas to Oklahoma. This tornado was often compared to the Tri-State Tornado, because it was originally thought to have left a 220 mile path, but it is now believed to have a been part of a family of 5 or 6 tornadoes. These tornadoes, although deadly, did not match the astounding death toll of the earlier event, nor did they match the record speed of that tornado, although at over 40 mph (64 km/h), they qualified as a fast tracking storm.
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Quoting HurrikanEB:
Wow. The US has not had a major hurricane strike since Wilma '05, but with $25 Billion in damages, this year's tornadoes have easily been the equivalent of the 4th most costly Hurricane on record... a spot ahead of Wilma, herself.

That is incredible. It is almost impossible to fathom. And these monsters took aim on populated areas. Put these twisters on the great plains of Kansas or Nebraska and those estimated losses and damage figures would be dwarfed. Not that I or anyone would ever wish the force of Mother Nature upon anyone, anywhere. At least not like that!! Unreal. The Joplin, MO one alone caused more damage than an average hurricane strike upon the CONUS.
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174. BDAwx
I'm sorry, what does socialism have to do with the climate change debate?
Member Since: August 3, 2009 Posts: 51 Comments: 545
We'll see what the future holds with La Nina. It can't stay in place forever. Link
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NASA's Cassini Delivers Holiday Treats from Saturn

ScienceDaily (Dec. 23, 2011)- No team of reindeer, but radio signals flying clear across the solar system from NASA's Cassini spacecraft have delivered a holiday package of glorious images. The pictures, from Cassini's imaging team, show Saturn's largest, most colorful ornament, Titan, and other icy baubles in orbit around this splendid planet.

Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9882
I can see a dip in the center of the convection with Thane...starting to match up with microwave imagery
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4488

ESO optician Guillaume Blanchard captured this marvellous wide-angle photo of Comet Lovejoy just two days ago on Dec. 22, 2011. Comet Lovejoy has been the talk of the astronomy community over the past few weeks. It was first discovered Nov. 27 by the Australian amateur astronomer Terry Lovejoy and was classified as a Kreutz sungrazer, with its orbit taking it very close to the Sun, passing a mere 140,000 kilometres from the Sun’s surface. (Credit: G. Blanchard (eso.org/~gblancha) / ESO)
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9882
Quoting IceCoast:
Springfield Massachusetts tornado on June 1st. Some of the worst storms i've seen in this area in my lifetime. It was a bad year for everybody.








Very rare to experience a twister of such strength impacting a geographical area (Massachusetts) that far north. What a year of the tornado it truly has been...
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Quoting TampaSpin:
If i looked at a wall in a house covered with paint and textured and someone told me to find a nail......and i find it i believe. Then i take a hammer to put another nail in the wall and the Nail won't drive into the wall it just bends. Do you think i really found a nail by just assuming it was a wall made of wood, but was a concrete block wall with no nails?



Are you using the wrong nails again? ;-)
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Quoting hydrus:
We still have plenty of time to pin down a forecast It will be interesting as always. I am curious to see how much moisture will be associated with this event.
depends on the waning of la nina and how much those pac sst's rebound....
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Quoting trunkmonkey:


I admit, I do not have command of the english language as you do, I commend you for it, I also like your pie baking, that's awsome!
But there are so many varibles when it comes to global warming, we can't be that smart.
Here are some of my issues with the global warming
theories.
1. Grant monies to colleges to promote a political scheme to further socialism.
2. Polairity shifts.
3. the number of active volcano's were at 122 now, the largest in many years, goes with the polairity issues.
4. Political fodder.
5. Solar storms.
6. The demise of the Amazon forest and the effects it has created.
7.Just plain old weather cycles.

I admit there is global warming, just like we had global cooling when I was in college in the 70's.
But all of this being man made, and the majority of the global warming coming from the United States of America, I just don't buy it.
I never hear anything about the enviormental conditions china is doing, nor Russia, nor India, or South America, it's all about the United States.
I work with issues concerning enviormental spills and enforcement of cleanup of such tragadies,So I'm enviormentally friendly, I believe in government controls to protect us, but I'm against the lining the pockets of college professors, Schools, and others at the expense of my hard earned money.

Thank you!


"there are so many varibles when it comes to global warming, we can't be that smart." - First off, you do not have to be a genius to know that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. This is basic science.

"Here are some of my issues with the global warming theories."

1. Grant monies to colleges to promote a political scheme to further socialism."
- What evidence do you have to support this claim? The AGWT is not based on how much or how little money is spent on the research. The theory is based on the science. One could just as easily state that grant monies, subsidies, tax breaks and tax refunds given to the carbon based energy sectors are used to show that the AGWT is real because these sectors spend an enormous amount of monies lobbying our representatives and putting forth their own economic agenda to the public to further their own economic gains. You may very well say that at least they are not spending our tax dollars to do this. Yes, in a very real sense, they are. Remember the grants, subsidies, tax breaks and tax refunds they get? We are also probably paying higher prices at the pump for their continued efforts to finance their efforts to disavow the AGWT. Even so, are they really disavowing the AGWT when they say they are becoming "greener" and making financial commitments towards renewable energy sources? New Energy What about their efforts to start making claims on drilling rights once the Arctic has become ice free? Do their actions, in this direction, really show that they do not believe in the AGWT? Drilling for oil in Arctic Ocean ... and then this ... Arctic Melting May Lead To Expanded Oil Drilling. .. I would think the carbon based energy sector is quite certain that AGWT is real and its effects are being seen today. They tell us one thing, while they plan for the opposite. .. Who do you trust now? The scientists or the ones that have the most to profit from discrediting the scientists? Once again, it should not take a genius to figure this one out.

2. Polairity shifts. Really? When was the last time you saw such a shift in polarity? Yesterday? Last week? Last month? Last year? Last decade? Last century? Last millennium? When was the last shift in polarity? ... Pole shift hypothesis.

3. the number of active volcano's were at 122 now, the largest in many years, goes with the polairity issues. - As far as the polarity issue goes, see the the comment in #2. As far as the volcanic activity goes, we have not seen any volcanic activity out of the "norm". An eruption of the scale of Krakatoa will have a short lived effect on the climate. ... 1883 eruption of Krakatoa. A more lasting climate effect would come from the eruption of a super caldera. Super volcano ... Have you seen any such events lately?

4. Political fodder. - Could you be more specific on this? Political fodder seems to be very common and on so many levels. Does political fodder have any effect on what is actually observed concerning AGW? AGW does not have any concerns as to what your politics, emotions or beliefs are. They make absolutely no difference at all.

5. Solar storms. - Space Weather – Solar Storm Heads Toward Earth.

6. The demise of the Amazon forest and the effects it has created. - This does have an impact when we start removing nature's natural sinks. Most of this deforestation is done by man. So, once again, we are showing that man is having an impact on climate. This tends to further support the AGWT, does it not? Is this the only impact man is making on climate? ... Look, before you leap.

7. Just plain old weather cycles. - How can this be when you have already agreed that deforestation of the Amazon has an impact? Weather cycles are driven by climate. When you change the climate you also the weather patterns. We will see new "norms" in what we view as weather cycles.

I admit there is global warming, just like we had global cooling when I was in college in the 70's.
But all of this being man made, and the majority of the global warming coming from the United States of America, I just don't buy it."
- You may not "buy it" but, we will all be paying for it. The "global cooling" was a theory presented by a few scientist and not widely supported by the vast majority of the scientist. Perhaps this theory of global cooling did serve a purpose when it brought more scientist into the field of the study of climate only showed that it is the opposite of this theory that is true. When it comes to the point of the U.S. creating the most CO2, well ... List of countries by carbon dioxide emissions. ... Remember, China just very recently surpassed the U.S. in CO2 emissions. Until then, the U.S. was the supreme ruler of all things CO2.

"I never hear anything about the enviormental conditions china is doing, nor Russia, nor India, or South America, it's all about the United States." - May I suggest that you just have not been paying attention?

"I work with issues concerning enviormental spills and enforcement of cleanup of such tragadies,So I'm enviormentally friendly, I believe in government controls to protect us, but I'm against the lining the pockets of college professors, Schools, and others at the expense of my hard earned money." - That is a fair enough statement. Tell me, if you will, how your statement negates the AGWT?
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Quoting sunlinepr:
Link Between Earthquakes and Tropical Cyclones: New Study May Help Scientists Identify Regions at High Risk for Earthquakes
enlarge
Roadway in Leogane, Haiti. (Credit: Estelle Chaussard)

ScienceDaily (Dec. 8, 2011) - A groundbreaking study led by University of Miami (UM) scientist Shimon Wdowinski shows that earthquakes, including the recent 2010 temblors in Haiti and Taiwan, may be triggered by tropical cyclones (hurricanes and typhoons), according to a presentation of the findings at the 2011 AGU Fall Meeting in San Francisco.

"Very wet rain events are the trigger," said Wdowinski, associate research professor of marine geology and geophysics at the UM Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. "The heavy rain induces thousands of landslides and severe erosion, which removes ground material from the Earth's surface, releasing the stress load and encouraging movement along faults."

Wdowinski and a colleague from Florida International University analyzed data from quakes magnitude-6 and above in Taiwan and Haiti and found a strong temporal relationship between the two natural hazards, where large earthquakes occurred within four years after a very wet tropical cyclone season.

During the last 50 years three very wet tropical cyclone events -- Typhoons Morakot, Herb and Flossie -- were followed within four years by major earthquakes in Taiwan's mountainous regions. The 2009 Morakot typhoon was followed by a M-6.2 in 2009 and M-6.4 in 2010. The 1996 Typhoon Herb was followed by M-6.2 in 1998 and M-7.6 in 1999 and the 1969 Typhoon Flossie was followed by a M-6.2 in 1972.

More Link

Not going to shed much light on the infamous New Madrid seismic zone though. Maybe tens of thousands of years ago when the mid-Mississippi valley up through the extreme southern tip of Illinois (Cairo, IL) was ocean front property!! lol
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T hane is a deadly storm heading into India..
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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