High risk of a major tornado outbreak today; 13 dead from Leap Day outbreak

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:14 PM GMT on March 02, 2012

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A powerful spring storm system is gathering strength over Missouri this morning, and will track northeastward into Southern Michigan tonight. The atmosphere in the storm's warm sector, south of the the warm front and east of the cold front, is very unstable, thanks to a flow of warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico at the surface, and very cold, dry air aloft. A powerful jet stream with winds winds aloft blowing at 150 mph will interact with this unstable air, and the strong change of wind speed and direction with height (wind shear) associated with this jet will impart a strong twisting motion to updrafts that from in this afternoon's thunderstorms along the cold front. These are ideal conditions for tornado formation, and a large tornado outbreak with damaging long-track tornadoes is likely late this afternoon in the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys. NOAA's Storm Prediction Center has placed Central Kentucky, Northern Tennessee, and a small portion of Southern Indiana in their "High Risk" area for severe weather Friday afternoon and evening, and is warning of the possibility of long-track significant tornadoes. While the conditions are not as dangerous as those we saw in 2011 during the May 21 - 25 Joplin, Missouri and late April Southeast U.S. tornado outbreaks, the potential exists for a punishing tornado assault with many more strong and violent tornadoes than occurred during the Leap Day outbreak. A number of severe thunderstorms with damaging winds have already formed this morning along the storm's warm front, in Missouri, Indiana, and Illinois. Consult our Severe Weather Page and Interactive Tornado Page to follow the storms.


Figure 1. NOAA's Storm Prediction Center has placed Central Kentucky, Northern Tennessee, and a small portion of Southern Indiana in their "High Risk" area for severe weather Friday afternoon. This is highest level of alert.


Figure 2. NOAA's Storm Prediction Center is calling for a 30% chance of tornadoes today within 25 miles of each point in the pink shaded area. Within the hatched area, there is a 10% or greater probability of strong EF-2 and EF-3 tornadoes, or violent EF-4 and EF-5 tornadoes within 25 miles of a point.

Leap Day tornado outbreak death toll hits 13
The cleanup continues today from the round of deadly tornadoes that pounded the Midwest on Leap Day, killing thirteen people. The outbreak began on February 28, when nine confirmed tornadoes touched down. A pair of EF-2 tornadoes hit Buffalo, Missouri and Harveyville, Kansas, with each twister causing one death. Also on that day, a weak EF-0 tornado moved over open fields near Gandy, Nebraska--the first February tornado in Nebraska since record keeping began in 1950. The outbreak continued on Leap Day, February 29, with 27 more confirmed tornadoes. Hardest hit was Harrisburg, Illinois, where a violent EF-4 tornado with 180 mph killed six, injured approximately 100, and damaged 200 homes and 25 businesses. The tornado cut a path 26.5 miles long and 275 yards wide across the town, according to the NWS damage survey. The only EF-3 tornado of the outbreak hit Asherville, Missouri that day, killing one person. The other deadly tornadoes of the outbreak included an EF-2 tornado that killed one person in Cassville, MO; an EF-2 that killed two in Monterey, Tennessee, and an EF-1 that killed one person in Smithville, Tennessee. An EF-2 tornado also plowed through downtown Branson, Missouri on Leap Day, injuring 33 people. An NWS storm survey found the tornado was 400 yards wide and carved a path 22 miles long. Overall, damage from the two-day tornado outbreak will run in the hundreds of millions, and could add up to the first billion-dollar weather disaster of 2012 in the U.S. The 36 confirmed tornadoes from the outbreak make it the second largest February tornado outbreak since record keeping began in 1950. The biggest February tornado outbreak occurred on February 5 - 6, 2008, when 92 tornadoes touched down.


Figure 3. Damage at the Branson, Missouri Hilton after the Leap Day tornado. The tornado blew out or cracked windows in 219 of the hotel rooms in the 12-story/295 room Hilton Branson Convention Center, and extensively damaged three of Branson’s 50 plus theatres--Americana Theater, Branson Variety Theater and Dick Clarks’ American Bandstand Theater. Image credit: BransonRecovery Facebook page.

Portlight disaster relief charity responds to the Harrisburg, Illinois tornado
Portlight has a seasoned veteran from last year's tornado recovery efforts in Harrisburg, IL, and is looking for more people to volunteer their time. They are teaming with another disaster recovery charity, Team Rubicon, in the effort. As usual, they will be focusing efforts on the unserved, under served and forgotten. Please visit the Portlight Disaster Relief blog to learn more. Donations are always welcome!


Figure 4. Team Rubicon at work during last year's tornado recovery efforts.

Jeff Masters

HARRISBURG IL (catfish10)
HARRISBURG IL
HARISBURG IL. (catfish10)
Golden circle building
HARISBURG IL.

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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Tornadic supercell headed right towards the radar station. If it goes down, we won't be able to get radar from there.



That thing is toast.
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Excellent coverage on WHAS11.com; thanks for the link. What is really amazing about all of this is how fast the systems are moving along. Just mind-blowing.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Tornadic supercell headed right towards the radar station. If it goes down, we won't be able to get radar from there.

overlaying stations will have to do weaken sigs but still see
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live feed saying Henryville is destroyed..the town is GONE!..my gosh!
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"Henryville is gone": numerous reports.
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Henryville apparently has been 'destroyed' by reports.
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http://s1160.photobucket.com/albums/q496/TampaSpi n/



Check out these RADAR Captures thus far..
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Tornadic supercell headed right towards the radar station. If it goes down, we won't be able to get radar from there.

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Quoting Ameister12:
God. Never in my life have a seen anything like this. These storms are moving right for me and the Cincinnati area.
\

Protect yourself and your family and we're praying for ya!
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Quoting Ameister12:
God. Never in my life have a seen anything like this. These storms are moving right for me and the Cincinnati area.

Are you under any warnings right now?
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TWC Breaking ‏ @TWCBreaking

#Tornado EMERGENCY for Carrollton, Vevay, Waraw, KY. Large tornado w/ history of #damage headed that way!
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Derbies Ball on radar, heading for Haysville.
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Quoting Ameister12:
God. Never in my life have a seen anything like this. These storms are moving right for me and the Cincinnati area.
Stay safe Meister.
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CNN LIVE affiliate WAVE (Louisville,Kentucky) is going nuts trying to provide coverage of its area alone.
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Ugly ugly ugly...THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN NASHVILLE HAS ISSUED A * TORNADO WARNING FOR... GRUNDY COUNTY IN MIDDLE TENNESSEE... * UNTIL 300 PM CST * AT 224 PM CST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO. THIS DANGEROUS STORM WAS LOCATED 7 MILES NORTH OF TRACY CITY...OR 18 MILES SOUTHEAST OF MANCHESTER...AND MOVING NORTHEAST AT 50 MPH. * LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE... GRUETLI-LAAGER...COALMONT...ALTAMONT...BEERSHEBA SPRINGS AND PALMER. PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS... TAKE COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A STURDY BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME...A VEHICLE OR OUTDOORS...MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.
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...we should take a quiet moment to reflect on the nature of today's events, and plan to do all we can in the aftermath.

end of line
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God. Never in my life have a seen anything like this. These storms are moving right for me and the Cincinnati area.
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confirmed SERIOUS damage in Henryville, Indiana. Police offers reportedly in shock.
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This is only March 2nd, and we're facing a potential super outbreak. People need to get to shelter, NOW!!
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Quoting LargoFl:
cnn just said there are 19 reports of tornado's all over the place


Across three or four states at the same time.....
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Quoting hydrus:
I think moving TorCon up to a "10" is par for the course when there are tornadoes all over it,,..:)
how you holdin' up Hydrus? We have about 10 minutes until a couple cells come over the top of us..
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Quoting RicoBert1:
Is there anyway jamesrainier could stop posting every damn warning that goes up? Spam much?


No he can't, and I won't either. This stuff saves lives.
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SEVERE WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GREENVILLE-SPARTANBURG SC
351 PM EST FRI MAR 2 2012

GAC241-SCC073-022115-
/O.CON.KGSP.TO.W.0005.000000T0000Z-120302T2115Z/
RABUN GA-OCONEE SC-
351 PM EST FRI MAR 2 2012

...A TORNADO WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 415 PM EST FOR NORTHERN
OCONEE AND SOUTHEASTERN RABUN COUNTIES...

AT 349 PM EST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR CONTINUED TO
INDICATE A TORNADO. THIS TORNADO WAS LOCATED 2 MILES SOUTHEAST OF
LAKEMONT...OR 8 MILES SOUTH OF CLAYTON...MOVING EAST AT 40 MPH.

THE AREA FROM LAKEMONT TO LONG CREEK TO MOUNTAIN REST WILL BE
DIRECTLY IN THE PATH OF THIS TORNADO. OTHER LOCATIONS IN THE WARNING
INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO PINE MOUNTAIN...MOUNTAIN REST...LAKE
KEOWEE AND SALEM.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

IN ADDITION TO THE TORNADO THREAT...DAMAGING HAIL TO THE SIZE OF
GOLFBALLS WILL PRECEDE THE TORNADO. WIND DRIVEN HAIL OF THIS SIZE
POSES A SIGNIFICANT RISK OF INJURY AND DAMAGE. MOBILE HOMES AND
VEHICLES SHOULD BE ABANDONED FOR STURDIER SHELTER. OTHERWISE...GO TO
AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST LEVEL OF YOUR HOME OR PLACE OF
BUSINESS.

A TORNADO WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 1100 PM EST FRIDAY EVENING
FOR NORTHEAST GEORGIA AND WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA AND CENTRAL SOUTH
CAROLINA.

&&

LAT...LON 3500 8312 3505 8291 3499 8294 3494 8290
3492 8291 3483 8290 3469 8334 3473 8337
3474 8345 3484 8348
TIME...MOT...LOC 2049Z 250DEG 33KT 3477 8336

$$

HG
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Quoting MAweatherboy1:

That's terrible.
A MAJOR concern is going to be places getting hit with tornadoes and then have another one come through with no power, people injured, and people wandering around totally unprotected. People need to be aware that this is a multi part event.


the feed I was watching saying phone lines were down..they have no idea what is coming back at them
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www.wunderground.com/tornado
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Quoting atmosweather:
All my prayers going out to the states affected today, this is April/May 2011 all over again...violent conditions and these could be even more widespread in a few hours.

Cincinnati and areas around there please take cover protect your life and property, that first tornado signature has powerful wedge written all over it.

Double wedges.

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Quoting weathermanwannabe:
Looking at the multi-state doppler radar on weather tap and I have never seen as many tornados/tornado warnings up at one time as at the present time..... Amazing.
cnn just said there are 19 reports of tornado's all over the place
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Quoting ncstorm:
Henryville HS flattened by the tornado. We don't know if kids are injured. Getting ready to get hit by tornado #2.

(twitter accuweather)

That's terrible.
A MAJOR concern is going to be places getting hit with tornadoes and then have another one come through with no power, people injured, and people wandering around totally unprotected. People need to be aware that this is a multi part event.
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Looking at the multi-state doppler radar on weather tap and I have never seen as many tornados/tornado warnings up at one time as at the present time..... Amazing.
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Quoting Patrap:
To remove any posts from view, use the ignore feature,

That Why itsa dere.


Lets not do this on a day like today, come on! Everyone post away. Information is needed whether its duplicated or not!
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TORNADO WARNING
INC079-022100-
/O.NEW.KIND.TO.W.0006.120302T2044Z-120302T2100Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE INDIANAPOLIS IN
344 PM EST FRI MAR 2 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN INDIANAPOLIS HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
NORTHEASTERN JENNINGS COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST INDIANA...

* UNTIL 400 PM EST

* AT 341 PM EST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO. THIS DANGEROUS
STORM WAS LOCATED NEAR NORTH VERNON...OR 16 MILES EAST OF
SEYMOUR...AND MOVING EAST AT 50 MPH.

* LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
BUTLERVILLE...
NEBRASKA...

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TAKE COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A
STURDY BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME...A VEHICLE OR
OUTDOORS...MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT
YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.

&&

LAT...LON 3907 8544 3896 8544 3893 8563 3911 8569
3916 8544 3916 8543 3908 8543
TIME...MOT...LOC 2044Z 256DEG 45KT 3904 8555

$$

AB/RYAN
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The anti-post Nea?
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All my prayers going out to the states affected today, this is April/May 2011 all over again...violent conditions and these could be even more widespread in a few hours.

Cincinnati and areas around there please take cover protect your life and property, that first tornado signature has powerful wedge written all over it.
Member Since: September 24, 2005 Posts: 33 Comments: 9265
To remove any posts from view, use the ignore feature,

That Why itsa dere.

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Quoting Neapolitan:
Reports of up to 30 people trapped in Henryville HS Link
School was apparently in session at the K-12 school in Henryville when that school was hit...
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Henryville HS flattened by the tornado. We don't know if kids are injured. Getting ready to get hit by tornado #2.

(twitter accuweather)
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from twitter (henryville ID)
HoosierWX.com ‏ @HoosierWX

Public Safety Vehicles destroyed up to 30 people possibly trapped in Henryville HS #INwx
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TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MEMPHIS TN
243 PM CST FRI MAR 2 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MEMPHIS HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
NORTHWESTERN BENTON COUNTY IN NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI...
NORTH CENTRAL MARSHALL COUNTY IN NORTHWEST MISSISSIPPI...
SOUTHEASTERN FAYETTE COUNTY IN SOUTHWEST TENNESSEE...
HARDEMAN COUNTY IN SOUTHWEST TENNESSEE...

* UNTIL 315 PM CST

* AT 243 PM CST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM PRODUCING A TORNADO 9 MILES WEST OF MICHIGAN
CITY...OR 14 MILES NORTH OF HOLLY SPRINGS...MOVING NORTHEAST AT 60
MPH.

* LOCATIONS IN THE WARNING INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO BOLIVAR.
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Is there anyway jamesrainier could stop posting every damn warning that goes up? Spam much?
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TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PADUCAH KY
244 PM CST FRI MAR 2 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN PADUCAH HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
EASTERN HOPKINS COUNTY IN NORTHWEST KENTUCKY...
SOUTHEASTERN MCLEAN COUNTY IN NORTHWEST KENTUCKY...
NORTHERN MUHLENBERG COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL KENTUCKY...

* UNTIL 315 PM CST.

* AT 242 PM CST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO. THIS DANGEROUS
STORM WAS LOCATED 6 MILES EAST OF MADISONVILLE...AND MOVING
NORTHEAST AT 60 MPH.

IN ADDITION...AT GOLFBALL SIZE HAIL WAS REPORTED IN MADISONVILLE
WITH THIS STORM.

* LOCATIONS IN THE WARNED AREA INCLUDE...
CENTRAL CITY...GRAHAM...LIVERMORE...SACRAMENTO...BREMEN... SOUTH
CARROLLTON AND ISLAND.
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Reports of up to 30 people trapped in Henryville HS Link
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Were not even at Max Heating nor forcing.

This event has many Hours to go, and darkness will be a hindrance later. Be vigilante, call Loved ones in the way,text, FB, etc.

Use the net to save lives.

Some may be unaware.

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0346 PM TORNADO MILTON 38.71N 85.37W
03/02/2012 TRIMBLE KY TRAINED SPOTTER

FIRE DEPARTMENT DAMAGED.

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TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE INDIANAPOLIS IN
344 PM EST FRI MAR 2 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN INDIANAPOLIS HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
NORTHEASTERN JENNINGS COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST INDIANA...

* UNTIL 400 PM EST

* AT 341 PM EST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO. THIS DANGEROUS
STORM WAS LOCATED NEAR NORTH VERNON...OR 16 MILES EAST OF
SEYMOUR...AND MOVING EAST AT 50 MPH.

* LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
BUTLERVILLE...
NEBRASKA...
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TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WILMINGTON OH
347 PM EST FRI MAR 2 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN WILMINGTON HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
RIPLEY COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST INDIANA...

* UNTIL 415 PM EST.

* AT 342 PM EST...RADAR INDICATED A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF
PRODUCING A TORNADO. THIS DANGEROUS STORM WAS LOCATED 10 MILES WEST
OF HOLTON...MOVING EAST AT 50 MPH. IN ADDITION TO THE TORNADO...
THIS STORM IS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING QUARTER SIZE HAIL AND DESTRUCTIVE
STRAIGHT LINE WINDS.

* LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
OSGOOD...
VERSAILLES...
BATESVILLE...
MILAN...

IN ADDITION...NEW MARION...HOLTON...OTTER VILLAGE...NAPOLEON...
VERSAILLES LAKE...PENNTOWN AND SUNMAN ARE NEAR THE PATH OF THIS
DANGEROUS THUNDERSTORM.

THIS INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING INTERSTATE...
I-74 BETWEEN MILE MARKERS 149 AND 157...
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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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