Damaging freeze hits the Midwest U.S.

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:46 PM GMT on April 12, 2012

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Large portions of the Midwest U.S. shivered through a hard freeze (temperatures below 28°F ) this morning, and freezing temperatures extended as far south as Tennessee and North Carolina. Though the cold temperatures were not unusual for this time of year, they likely caused widespread damage to flowering plants fooled into blooming by last month's unprecedented "Summer in March" heat wave. Growers of apples, pears, peaches, nectarines, plums, and cherries worked during the night and early morning to minimize the damage by running large fans and propane heaters in their orchards, and some even rented helicopters in an attempts to keep temperatures a few degrees warmer. While freezing temperatures for an extended period will not kill the trees, they will destroy the flowers and fragile buds that are needed to produce fruit later in the year. Temperatures of approximately 28°F will kill about 10% of fruit tree buds and flowers, while temperatures of 25°F will produce a 90% kill rate. Temperatures of 25° were common over Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota this morning, and I expect that this morning's freeze was severe and widespread enough to cause tens of millions of dollars in damage to the fruit industry. There have been numerous freezes and frosts over the Midwest's fruit growing regions since late March, and orchards are definitely taking a major beating from the weather. It will be several weeks before the extent of the damage is known, but I think that so far it is unlikely that the industry has suffered a billion-dollar disaster, such as occurred in 2007. A warm spell in March that year was followed by cold temperatures in early April that were 10 - 20 degrees below average, bringing killing frosts and freezes to the Midwest and South that caused $2.2 billion in agricultural damage, wiping out apple, peach, winter wheat and alfalfa crops.


Figure 1. Temperatures this morning dipped below freezing across most the northeast quarter of the country, extending into Tennessee and North Carolina. Image taken from our wundermap with the new "go back in time" feature turned on.

History of billion-dollar U.S. freezes
Freezes can cause big damage to agriculture. According to NOAA's National Climatic Data Center, there have been six billion-dollar U.S. freezes since 1980, accounting for 5% of all billion-dollar weather-related disasters. Five of these freezes affected California or Florida; one hit the Midwest. Ranked by damages (in 2011 dollars), here are the six billion-dollar U.S. freeze events since 1980:

1) California Freeze of December 1990. Severe freeze in the Central and Southern San Joaquin Valley caused the loss of citrus, avocado trees, and other crops in many areas. Several days of subfreezing temperatures occurred, with some valley locations in the teens. $5.9 billion in direct and indirect economic losses, including damage to public buildings, utilities, crops, and residences.

2) Florida Freeze of December 1983. Severe freeze central/northern Florida; about $4.5 billion damage to citrus industry.

3) California Freeze of December 1998. A severe freeze damaged fruit and vegetable crops in the Central and Southern San Joaquin Valley. Extended intervals of sub 27° F temperatures occurred over an 8-day period; $3.5 billion estimated damages/costs.

4) Florida Freeze of January 1985. Severe freeze in central/northern Florida; about $2.5 billion damage to citrus industry.

5) East/Midwest freeze of April 2007. Widespread severe freeze over much of the East and Midwest (AL, AR, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, MS, MO, NE, NC, OH, OK, SC, TN, VA, WV), causing significant losses in fruit crops, field crops (especially wheat), and the ornamental industry. Temperatures in the teens/20's accompanied by rather high winds nullified typical crop-protection systems. Over $2.2 billion in damage/costs.

6) California Freeze of January 2007. For nearly two weeks in January, overnight temperatures over a good portion of California dipped into the 20's, destroying numerous agricultural crops, with citrus, berry, and vegetable crops most affected. $1.5 billion estimated in damage/costs; 1 fatality reported.

Record warmth in the Western U.S.
As is often the case when one part of the country is experiencing much cooler than average temperatures, the other half is seeing record warmth, due to a large bend in the jet stream that allows warm air to flow northwards. Much of Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, and Colorado experienced record warm temperatures yesterday. Most notably, Jackson, Wyoming hit 72°F, the earliest 70° reading in their history, and 27° above their normal high of 45°.


Figure 2. Severe weather risk for Saturday, April 14, 2012, from NOAA's Storm Prediction Center.

Tornado outbreak possible Saturday in Kansas and Oklahoma
A significant tornado outbreak is possible on Saturday, says NOAA's Storm Prediction Center. A warm, unstable airmass will collide with cold air funneling down from Canada, and strong jet stream winds will create plenty of wind shear. There is the potential for long-track strong tornadoes over Oklahoma and Kansas on Saturday, and SPC has has issued their second highest level of alert, a "Moderate Risk," for the region.

First named storm in the Atlantic possible next week
Both the GFS and ECMWF models are predicting that an extratropical "cut-off" low will separate from the jet stream early next week several hundred miles east of Bermuda, and linger for several days over subtropical waters with temperatures in the 22 - 24°C range. These ocean temperatures may be warm enough to allow the storm to organize into a named subtropical storm. However, climatology argues against such an occurrence; there has been only one named April storm in the Atlantic since 1851. If a subtropical storm does form next week, it would probably not affect any land areas.

Jeff Masters

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622. sunlinepr
8:06 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9882
621. TropicalAnalystwx13
7:30 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Jon Haverfield
‏ @JonDopplerFAST8
Follow
Reports saying SPC is considering an upgrade past high risk for tomorrow... Could be first time that it has happened.. #okwx #kswx
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32877
620. Jedkins01
5:31 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ScottLincoln:


Just think of how much people would listen to our warnings next event if this event we told them to stay in their basements all day...



How soon you see the moderate or high risks does not necessarily correspond to how bad the event will be nor the density of severe weather. It is more related to perceived confidence in the event.

Some of our biggest events in recent history did not have enhanced risks or wording until the day of the event. Some of our biggest bust events have had enhanced wording out far before the event. I wouldn't put meaning into how soon an area is highlighted as an indicator of severity. Many of ingredients for severe weather and even strong tornadoes are not known or observable until just before they occur.



Very true, a large majority of the severe weather I've had living here in Central Florida didn't have any severe risk wording, including 2 tornadoes I've seen. During the wet season any given day can spark severe weather. This is because most of the severe weather and thunderstorms/rainfall is triggered by meso-scale/surface events, which models really struggle forecasting and anticipating properly.
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8029
619. etxwx
5:21 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Not to distract from the ongoing severe weather discussion, but Irene has been retired.
Link

Long time lurker...first post. Appreciate all the info I've gather on this site. Thanks.
Member Since: September 4, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1529
618. BahaHurican
4:13 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Morning all.

Hard to believe this cloud formation



just gave us [Nassau] about 25 minutes of hard rain...

Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22736
617. MississippiWx
3:26 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ScottLincoln:


If you really think this W. Scott Lincoln fellow at the NWS is famous-enough for random people on the internet to try and copy with fake blog usernames (usernames that were created over 6 years ago, before said NWS employee was even done with college, let alone a famous NWS employee), you could always email him at his work address and see if he responds to you with:
A) what!? someone is copying my identity on some unpopular weather website called Weather Underground? or
B) Yes, I've had the handle "ScottLincoln" since my early years of weather-interest when I first had a home weather station and before I even finished my B.S., let alone became an NWS employee.


Scott,

Do you work at the Jackson, MS WFO? I noticed your picture was taken there, so I was just curious. BTW, I have no reason to believe you aren't who you say you are. Your posts are too intelligent and accurate to be an imposter. Keep up the good work!
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
616. ScottLincoln
3:13 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ncstorm:


listen I hear you guys and again I have nothing against ScottLincoln but I could up make up a handle and say I am Greg Forbes. If he is the real thing, then great for him but I will stick to my local NWS and local weather meterologists for life threatening issues concerning weather. I am not starting an argument so lets keep today and tomorrow drama free:)


If you really think this W. Scott Lincoln fellow at the NWS is famous-enough for random people on the internet to try and copy with fake blog usernames (usernames that were created over 6 years ago, before said NWS employee was even done with college, let alone a famous NWS employee), you could always email him at his work address and see if he responds to you with:
A) what!? someone is copying my identity on some unpopular weather website called Weather Underground? or
B) Yes, I've had the handle "ScottLincoln" since my early years of weather-interest when I first had a home weather station and before I even finished my B.S., let alone became an NWS employee.
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3327
615. ScottLincoln
3:09 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
I don't think I ever thought I'd have a blog comment battle over whether or not I existed or whether or not I was the real person behind the handle. Heck, i didn't even think that I was famous enough to be someone "covetable" in a fake blog name way. It's epic.
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3327
614. TheOnlyBravesFan
3:05 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ScottLincoln:


If needbe, maybe the particularly important or interesting part of the warning text could be posted.


I agree, which is why I only post the wording of hail/wind size or what is said about a tornado. The average person isn't (or shouldn't be) looking at this blog for their severe weather info.
Member Since: January 30, 2012 Posts: 10 Comments: 224
613. kwgirl
3:03 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
NEW BLOG
Member Since: March 28, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1532
612. jeffs713
3:02 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
NEW BLOG
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891
611. ncstorm
3:00 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:



Scott Lincoln:

Career Summary
Hydrologist, Cartographer
NOAA/NWS Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center, Slidell, LA

Education Summary
M.S., Environmental Science, Iowa State University, 2007 – 2009
B.S., Environmental Science, Iowa State University, 2003 – 2007
Concentrations: Hydrology, GIS, Modeling, Meteorology

Summary of Research Experience
Operational Modeling of Small-scale Watersheds
NEXRAD Precipitation Estimate Analysis
Regional Climatic Changes Due to Agricultural Land-Use Change in Iowa

Summary of Research Skills
Use of HEC-HMS hydrological model
Use of ESRI GIS products
Experimentation with a regional climate model
Knowledge of Python, Matlab, Java, C++, Fortran

Awards and Honors
NOAA/NWS Local Award Recipient (2010)
NOAA/NWS Local Award Recipient (2011)
NOAA/NWS Southern Region Director's Award Recipient (2011)

*Full Curriculum Vitae available by request


and you can google him.
He is not a fake.



listen I hear you guys and again I have nothing against ScottLincoln but I could up make up a handle and say I am Greg Forbes. If he is the real thing, then great for him but I will stick to my local NWS and local weather meterologists for life threatening issues concerning weather. I am not starting an argument so lets keep today and tomorrow drama free:)
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16225
610. Chucktown
2:59 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting jeffs713:

I had no idea you were a TV Met, especially with how contrary and argumentative I've seen you here on the blog.

Learn something new every day.


Contrary and argumentative? Why, because I'm not with the majority of the blog when it comes to AGW or go along with the "gloom and doom" mantra whenever there is "weather". I just call them as I see them.
Member Since: August 27, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1785
609. ScottLincoln
2:59 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


Oh boy, a Saturday.
EEEVVERYONE will be here.
I think we should post warnings on very strong and dangerous storms.
On days like tomorrow, it really helps when someone points out a storm you were missing because you were looking at another supercell far away.
For example, i didnt even notice the west liberty cell on march 2 because i was looking at the line of storms instead of ahead of it.

For someone on the blog, they could see they are in the path of the storm, or someone they know is,
but you are right in that we do not need to post every little warning.


Talking about a storm that we are missing, or pointing it out... well that's different than posting an entire warning text verbatim. Most probably skip over the warning text. If needbe, maybe the particularly important or interesting part of the warning text could be posted.

But if we try and refrain from doing so, we wont end up with 3 or 4 of the same warning on the blog that we are not going to read anyway that just blocks us from reading the posts we are trying to get to.
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3327
608. ScottLincoln
2:57 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting WatchingThisOne:


ScottLincoln is a NWS meteorologist. I'm pretty sure when he said "our" he was referring to the NWS, not this blog - WHICH DOES NOT ISSUE OFFICIAL WARNINGS (and should never pretend to).

WTO


Technically I'm an environmental scientist/hydrologist/cartographer. Officially educated and work in similar things, but not officially a met. Just a minor in meteorology, although have been through the NWS radar/warning training courses and have given seminars on radar/severe weather.

Quoting ncstorm:


do you know how many people come on this blog claiming to be someone or something..Im sorry if I dont see you on my local weather station or your picture listed at the NWS with your name attached to it, I dont trust anyone saying who they are on this blog..nothing against ScottLincoln but I will stick to my local NWS and Local weather..no one should be taking advice from anyone on this blog about life and death issues with the weather


As a public employee, it would not be hard to verify my existence. Heck, I think they are even required by law to tell you how much I make a year. Point is, you can verify that I am who I say I am pretty easily.
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3327
607. 900MB
2:57 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Awfully toasty water temps up here off NYC/Montauk, 3 degrees c above avg!
Member Since: June 11, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 684
606. TheOnlyBravesFan
2:56 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
^^^ This is why I love the NWS and want to work with them one day. They're always level-headed and correct! lol

Seriously, I'd love to see one day on WU without arguing.

Tomorrow looks to be some kinda severe weather event that I wouldn't want to be in. Keep safe all.
Member Since: January 30, 2012 Posts: 10 Comments: 224
605. GeorgiaStormz
2:55 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ScottLincoln:


Also a good time to preemptively discuss what tends to happen on big days like tomorrow might be. We should try our very best to keep our posts short and sweet, but also not post too many of the same repetitive things so that we can't keep up with one another.
-We should refrain from posting new warnings copied verbatim. People can get that information easily if they want.
-We should refrain from off-topic stuff like we usually do during tropical weather. We can argue at each other once it winds down ;)


Oh boy, a Saturday.
EEEVVERYONE will be here.
I think we should post warnings on very strong and dangerous storms.
On days like tomorrow, it really helps when someone points out a storm you were missing because you were looking at another supercell far away.
For example, i didnt even notice the west liberty cell on march 2 because i was looking at the line of storms instead of ahead of it.

For someone on the blog, they could see they are in the path of the storm, or someone they know is,
but you are right in that we do not need to post every little warning.
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9760
604. jeffs713
2:54 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
I wasn't intending to argue. :(

But anyway, Scott is right. keep it short, keep it simple, and stay on topic.

We can argue during hurricane season, like usual.
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891
603. GeorgiaStormz
2:52 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
On HRRR for today i see two rounds of storms for OK today, about 4 hours apart.

The 2nd looks stronger.

21 utc and 1 utc, so not for another 8-12 hours,
Should start around 6/7 central tonight
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9760
602. ScottLincoln
2:49 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting Barefootontherocks:
Please be careful what you say on this blog today and tomorrow. People are under the gun just as some of you might be were a major 'cane bearing down on your home. Quit arguing and watch the weather.


Also a good time to preemptively discuss what tends to happen on big days like tomorrow might be. We should try our very best to keep our posts short and sweet, but also not post too many of the same repetitive things so that we can't keep up with one another.
-We should refrain from posting new warnings copied verbatim. People can get that information easily if they want.
-We should refrain from off-topic stuff like we usually try and do during tropical weather. Maybe just treat it like the rules during a land-falling storm. We can argue at each other once it winds down ;)
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3327
601. GeorgiaStormz
2:49 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
nope they are meant to alert those active outdoors and in areas away from access to local tv and radio its a warning to seek additional infomation and take action to protect life forget the property that can be fixed a life cannot

another good one would be

those in direct path of this storm faces certain death and destruction


and when they live through it, or the tornado weakens and lifts, we have another hype problem.
This is a good idea, but they have to be very careful when and how they use the wording.
You don't want them to end up sounding like TWC where every hook echo adn debris ball is "WOWWWWW, ALL OF YOU ARE GOING TO DIE!!!!"
No hype.
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9760
600. jeffs713
2:48 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting Chucktown:


Yes, our local NWS WFO (CHS) will host a conference call whenever there is the possibility for a widespread severe weather event, winter weather, or tropical event. All the local TV mets, emergency managers, and HAM operators within the CHS CWA (County Warning Area) are invited to attend. It is very informative and keeps the local media and NWS on the same page. We (TV mets) have a great relationship with our local NWS. They actually hold seminars a few times a year to keep us updated with the latest upgrades and models that are currently in use. Now this doesn't happen with every WFO, but I'm glad we have have it here in Charleston.

I had no idea you were a TV Met, especially with how contrary and argumentative I've seen you here on the blog.

Learn something new every day.
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891
599. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
2:45 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ScottLincoln:


One of the new warning templates says that the storm would be unsurvivable outdoors and not in substantial shelter. It is not meant as a blanket "anything you do, no matter what, you will die."

Tornado sirens are not meant to be heard inside of restaurants, or any building, for that matter.
nope they are meant to alert those active outdoors and in areas away from access to local tv and radio its a warning to seek additional infomation and take action to protect life forget the property that can be fixed a life cannot

another good one would be

those in direct path of this storm faces certain death and destruction
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 178 Comments: 56141
598. Chucktown
2:44 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
NOAA has a conference afternooon concerning tomorrow?

Has that ever happened before?


Yes, our local NWS WFO (CHS) will host a conference call whenever there is the possibility for a widespread severe weather event, winter weather, or tropical event. All the local TV mets, emergency managers, and HAM operators within the CHS CWA (County Warning Area) are invited to attend. It is very informative and keeps the local media and NWS on the same page. We (TV mets) have a great relationship with our local NWS. They actually hold seminars a few times a year to keep us updated with the latest upgrades and models that are currently in use. Now this doesn't happen with every WFO, but I'm glad we have have it here in Charleston.
Member Since: August 27, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1785
597. Neapolitan
2:43 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ncstorm:


do you know how many people come on this blog claiming to be someone or something..Im sorry if I dont see you on my local weather station or your picture listed at the NWS with your name attached to it, I dont trust anyone saying who they are on this blog..nothing against ScottLincoln but I will stick to my local NWS and Local weather..no one should be taking advice from anyone on this blog about life and death issues with the weather
Generally speaking, I'd trust something Scott Lincoln told me way before I'd trust something told me by, say, the local TV station's weather reader. Just saying...
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13806
596. GeorgiaStormz
2:40 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ncstorm:


do you know how many people come on this blog claiming to be someone or something..Im sorry if I dont see you on my local weather station or your picture listed at the NWS with your name attached to it, I dont trust anyone saying who they are on this blog..nothing against ScottLincoln but I will stick to my local NWS and Local weather..no one should be taking advice from anyone on this blog about life and death issues with the weather



Scott Lincoln:

Career Summary
Hydrologist, Cartographer
NOAA/NWS Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center, Slidell, LA

Education Summary
M.S., Environmental Science, Iowa State University, 2007 – 2009
B.S., Environmental Science, Iowa State University, 2003 – 2007
Concentrations: Hydrology, GIS, Modeling, Meteorology

Summary of Research Experience
Operational Modeling of Small-scale Watersheds
NEXRAD Precipitation Estimate Analysis
Regional Climatic Changes Due to Agricultural Land-Use Change in Iowa

Summary of Research Skills
Use of HEC-HMS hydrological model
Use of ESRI GIS products
Experimentation with a regional climate model
Knowledge of Python, Matlab, Java, C++, Fortran

Awards and Honors
NOAA/NWS Local Award Recipient (2010)
NOAA/NWS Local Award Recipient (2011)
NOAA/NWS Southern Region Director's Award Recipient (2011)

*Full Curriculum Vitae available by request


and you can google him.
He is not a fake.

Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9760
595. ScottLincoln
2:39 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting MahFL:
The new tornado warnings now even say "This storm is not survivable", so I am not sure what you do in that situation, maybe get drunk real quick ?
Also many who died in Joplin were in restaurants and never even heard the sirens. By the time they realized a big tornado was coming it was too late for some.


One of the new warning templates says that the storm would be unsurvivable outdoors and not in substantial shelter. It is not meant as a blanket "anything you do, no matter what, you will die."

Tornado sirens are not meant to be heard inside of restaurants, or any building, for that matter.
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3327
594. Barefootontherocks
2:37 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting Barefootontherocks:
Thanks. Well, that's so true. I am near Norman, a hair S of the high risk area.
Just got one more thing to say. How many of you have ever been under a high risk, PDS tornado watch? Tomorrow will be my third in not quite two years. The other two panned out.

This is the most heads up ever given by SPC for potential high-end severe.

Please be careful what you say on this blog today and tomorrow. People are under the gun just as some of you might be were a major 'cane bearing down on your home. Quit arguing and watch the weather.

Best wishes to all Okies and our neighbors up in Kansas who are in this high risk with us.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I got other things to do right now.
Member Since: April 29, 2006 Posts: 159 Comments: 19397
593. weatherh98
2:36 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
NOAA has a conference afternooon concerning tomorrow?

Has that ever happened before?


You serious!? Who knows I'll google it
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6539
592. jeffs713
2:32 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
And I need to chill with my posting today.
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891
591. jeffs713
2:31 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
NOAA has a conference afternooon concerning tomorrow?

Has that ever happened before?

I think so, but I also know that the NWS is trying out different methods of getting the word out. So I wouldn't use the conference as a sign that the event will be more severe than others. It isn't a precedent-setting event... just an experiment in communication.
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891
590. jeffs713
2:29 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ncstorm:


do you know how many people come on this blog claiming to be someone or something..Im sorry if I dont see you on my local weather station or your picture listed at the NWS with your name attached to it, I dont trust anyone saying who they are on this blog..nothing against ScottLincoln but I will stick to my local NWS and Local weather..no one should be taking advice from anyone on this blog about life and death issues with the weather

Your choice, but ScottLincoln has been pretty well vetted here.

There is insight here that you can't get elsewhere, but I do partially agree with you. When it comes to life or death situations - the NWS is your best bet. (I don't have much respect for local mets outside of the NWS, since they hype things up a LOT more than they need to be, at least the talking heads on TV do)
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891
589. jeffs713
2:27 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ncstorm:


well, they shouldnt be listening to OUR warnings..they should be listening to their local NWS and local media. If you live in a two story house and you trying to make it downstairs to your basement with only a 15 minute warning with children in the bed, you most likely wont make it..I can remember the people in tuscaloosa saying they didnt have a warning? So waiting on a warning that might not ever materialize would be a huge price to pay because just because of someone looking ridiculous in sitting in a basement waiting on a storm. Dont you sit in your house and wait on a hurricane to pass through all day and all night?

Actually, before a hurricane arrives, I am working on getting my home prepared for the storm. And if I'm fully prepared, I'm helping the neighbors.

Once the storm arrives, yes, I'm in my house, because its the safest place. (just like you wouldn't go outside in the hail core of a tornadic thunderstorm)
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891
588. ncstorm
2:27 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting WatchingThisOne:


ScottLincoln is a NWS meteorologist. I'm pretty sure when he said "our" he was referring to the NWS, not this blog - WHICH DOES NOT ISSUE OFFICIAL WARNINGS (and should never pretend to).

WTO


do you know how many people come on this blog claiming to be someone or something..Im sorry if I dont see you on my local weather station or your picture listed at the NWS with your name attached to it, I dont trust anyone saying who they are on this blog..nothing against ScottLincoln but I will stick to my local NWS and Local weather..no one should be taking advice from anyone on this blog about life and death issues with the weather
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16225
587. TropicalAnalystwx13
2:24 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
NOAA has a conference afternooon concerning tomorrow?

Has that ever happened before?
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32877
586. RTSplayer
2:23 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting MahFL:
The new tornado warnings now even say "This storm is not survivable", so I am not sure what you do in that situation, maybe get drunk real quick ?
Also many who died in Joplin were in restaurants and never even heard the sirens. By the time they realized a big tornado was coming it was too late for some.


It means you cannot survive it above ground in the majority of buildings.

You MUST either find a basement or just run for your life and hope you guess the right direction.


there is nothing you can do vs the types of storms you saw in Mississippi/Alabama border last year, except get out of the way.

A normal basement isn't going to protect you against a storm that can uproot asphault or grass in a field, and then scour the ground 12 to 18 inches deep.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
585. MAweatherboy1
2:22 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
The only time you could try to drive away from a tornado would be if you are already in a car and judge that you can safely drive away without becoming a hazard on the road (basically if you need to go 100 mph to out run the tornado just pull over and get in a ditch)

If you are at home and have a basement it is always the best option. The next best option is to move to a small interior room like a closet or bathroom. If you can see a tornado from in your house and try to drive away you run the risks of:
* Your car not starting and you being trapped in your garage
* Your car not getting away in time and getting picked up and tossed around by the tornado
* Getting hit and injured/killed by flying debris

Bottom Line: Don't try to out run a tornado- Your house is much bigger and much safer
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 84 Comments: 8049
584. WatchingThisOne
2:22 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ncstorm:


well, they shouldnt be listening to OUR warnings..they should be listening to their local NWS and local media. If you live in a two story house and you trying to make it downstairs to your basement with only a 15 minute warning with children in the bed, you most likely wont make it..I can remember the people in tuscaloosa saying they didnt have a warning? So waiting on a warning that might not ever materialize would be a huge price to pay because just because of someone looking ridiculous in sitting in a basement waiting on a storm. Dont you sit in your house and wait on a hurricane to pass through all day and all night?


ScottLincoln is a NWS meteorologist. I'm pretty sure when he said "our" he was referring to the NWS, not this blog - WHICH DOES NOT ISSUE OFFICIAL WARNINGS (and should never pretend to).

WTO
Member Since: July 15, 2005 Posts: 3 Comments: 1270
583. Barefootontherocks
2:21 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting jeffs713:

Keep safe up there. It is one thing to be reviewing information about storms, but another thing entirely to be reviewing information about storms you can see out your window.
Thanks. Well, that's so true. I am near Norman, a hair S of the high risk area.
Member Since: April 29, 2006 Posts: 159 Comments: 19397
582. ncstorm
2:21 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Didnt Dr. Masters post a video with a disclaimor saying not to get in your car and flee from a tornado?
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16225
581. ncstorm
2:19 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting ScottLincoln:


Just think of how much people would listen to our warnings next event if this event we told them to stay in their basements all day...


well, they shouldnt be listening to OUR warnings..they should be listening to their local NWS and local media. If you live in a two story house and you trying to make it downstairs to your basement with only a 15 minute warning with children in the bed, you most likely wont make it..I can remember the people in tuscaloosa saying they didnt have a warning? So waiting on a warning that might not ever materialize would be a huge price to pay because just because of someone looking ridiculous in sitting in a basement waiting on a storm. Dont you sit in your house and wait on a hurricane to pass through all day and all night?
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16225
580. RTSplayer
2:19 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting hurricanehunter27:
I just saw the text forecast from the SPC and it has been a while sense I last saw that strong of wording. This will most likely be the main event of the entire tornado season. Also Sunday seems like it may turn out to be a nasty outbreak.


Max Tor:Con for Saturday is a 7 at the moment, and that's about 30hours out from the forecast period. Pretty high number for 30 hours out.

4 for Missourri over night tomorrow night.
5,6,7 for parts of Nebraska, Oklahoma(6), Kansas, and Texas.


Max Tor: Con for Sunday is a 6 in Iowa and Minnesota!, so 48 hours out and giving it a 6 already is a big deal.



So it's looking pretty bad, could rival last year's events depending on how things come together.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
579. hurricanehunter27
2:16 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting Barefootontherocks:
Hey, bloggers.
People have survived driving away from violent tornadoes. Doing it in a city a rush hour, not gonna work. It's not the best alternative, but it can work if you have no underground shelter and you understand the storm motion. Underground or one of those vault-like, poured all in one cast concrete above ground shelters are the only places you can consider "safe" in a violent tornado. Reality is, not many have true storm shelters, especially those in lower income groups.

People survived Joplin by getting into crawl spaces under buildings.

Now is the time to make a contingency plan, and know what you will do, not ten minutes before a violent (EF4 or 5) tornado is coming at you.
That is why EF4/EF5 tornadoes are so terrifying. There is really nothing you can do to fully protect yourself other than have a full fledged storm shelter. Sadly tomorrow will have fast moving supercells so it will be difficult to outrun them. Also the fast moving storms give a little less warning time for people to react/take cover.
Member Since: July 22, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 3853
578. Tazmanian
2:16 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting Barefootontherocks:
Hey, bloggers.
People have survived driving away from violent tornadoes. Doing it in a city a rush hour, not gonna work. It's not the best alternative, but it can work if you have no underground shelter and you understand the storm motion. Underground or one of those vault-like, poured all in one cast concrete above ground shelters are the only places you can consider "safe" in a violent tornado. Reality is, not many have true storm shelters, especially those in lower income groups.

People survived Joplin by getting into crawl spaces under buildings.

Now is the time to make a contingency plan, and know what you will do, not ten minutes before a violent (EF4 or 5) tornado is coming at you.


thank you
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115456
577. GeorgiaStormz
2:16 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting jeffs713:

That is what I was trying to get at, too... I just didn't want people to feel that a basement was not a good option. It is a good option. The best option is a true storm shelter, but that isn't available to most people.

If faced with basement vs. driving, I'm going to choose basement almost every single time.

That said, I'm in the same situation as GeorgiaStormz... I don't have a basement, so my happy rear end will be hiding under the stairs in the middle of my house.


a small interior room.......
I always hope that a the tornado isnt a stone slab leaving tornado.

But my house is a sturdy 2-story so an ef3 would probably leave the bottom floor alone.

I dont have a special storm shelter in my community of 400 homes, and i dont think they would appreciate me digging one. :)
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9760
576. severstorm
2:14 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:



I dont have a basement, so if my house gets wiped clean, im gone too.

Nope your not wiped out find a ditch to lay in. I live in a modular home no basement. Gots a 4 foot ditch behind the house to hide in.
Member Since: November 25, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 992
575. Barefootontherocks
2:12 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Hey, bloggers.
People have survived driving away from violent tornadoes. Doing it in a city a rush hour, not gonna work. It's not the best alternative, but it can work if you have no underground shelter and you understand the storm motion. Underground or one of those vault-like, poured all in one cast concrete above ground shelters are the only places you can consider "safe" in a violent tornado. Reality is, not many have true storm shelters, especially those in lower income groups.

People survived Joplin by getting into crawl spaces under buildings.

Now is the time to make a contingency plan, and know what you will do, not ten minutes before a violent (EF4 or 5) tornado is coming at you.
Member Since: April 29, 2006 Posts: 159 Comments: 19397
574. DavidHOUTX
2:10 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting Barefootontherocks:
One storm is all it takes for a high-end event. I'm still kind of in denial here. How's this for a Severe wx reminder...

"Remember Joplin!"

Some more perspective from the 1 am CDT Day 2 outlook..

THE MAIN CONCERN FOR THIS FORECAST IS CONVECTIVE COVERAGE. MANY OF
THE MODELS DO NOT DEVELOP NUMEROUS THUNDERSTORMS ALONG THE DRYLINE.
IN SPITE OF THIS...THE MODELS DIMINISH THE CAP ACROSS THE SRN AND
CNTRL PLAINS LATE SATURDAY AFTERNOON SO THIS BRINGS THE MODELS INTO
QUESTION.
IN ADDITION...THE MODELS DRIVE A BAND OF LARGE-SCALE
ASCENT ACROSS CNTRL KS DURING THE EARLY EVENING SUGGESTING MANY
STORMS SHOULD INITIATE WITH STORMS INITIATING SWD WITH TIME EARLY
SATURDAY EVENING AS THE LOW-LEVEL JET STRENGTHENS. THESE FACTORS
COMBINED WITH SFC DEWPOINTS IN THE LOWER TO MID 60S F AND VERY
FAVORABLE LOW-LEVEL SHEAR PROFILES SHOULD PRODUCE AND ENVIRONMENT
FAVORABLE FOR A TORNADO OUTBREAK. AFTER COLLABORATION WITH WFOS
WICHITA...NORMAN...TOPEKA...TULSA AND DODGE CITY...A HIGH RISK WILL
BE ISSUED DUE TO THE POTENTIAL FOR A HIGH-END LIFE THREATENING EVENT
ACROSS THE SRN AND CNTRL PLAINS.


Maybe this will show risk areas a little closer up.



I cannot remember if I have ever seen 60% like that on that map. That is astonishing. People there need to be alert
Member Since: August 18, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 635
573. Tazmanian
2:08 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
.
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115456
572. jeffs713
2:06 PM GMT on April 13, 2012
Quoting Minnemike:
that shelter you showed was clearly the best option.. if one has a Lot of lead time, they can drive away from an area if they know where other storms are..
but making the best decision in short time involves limited options for many.
your original point has merit! basements are not equal to the safety of true storm shelters.

That is what I was trying to get at, too... I just didn't want people to feel that a basement was not a good option. It is a good option. The best option is a true storm shelter, but that isn't available to most people.

If faced with basement vs. driving, I'm going to choose basement almost every single time.

That said, I'm in the same situation as GeorgiaStormz... I don't have a basement, so my happy rear end will be hiding under the stairs in the middle of my house.
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891

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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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