Rare Japanese tornado kills 1, injures 48

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:28 PM GMT on May 07, 2012

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A rare strong tornado ripped through Ibaraki Prefecture in eastern Japan 30 miles northeast of Tokyo on Sunday, killing a teenage boy, injuring 48 people, and damaging or destroying 890 buildings. The tornado carved a path of destruction 15 km long and 500 meters wide, said the Japan Meteorological Agency. The tornado was given a preliminary rating of F-2, with winds of 113 - 157 mph (Japan uses the traditional "F" scale to rate tornadoes, not the "EF" scale used in the U.S.) The tornado also damaged homes in a housing complex in Tsukuba where 20 people from seven families from Fukushima Prefecture had evacuated following the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant, caused by the earthquake and tsunami of March 2011. I bet those families are feeling disaster-prone!


Video 1. A rare tornado in Japan hits approximately 30 miles northeast of Tokyo on May 6, 2012.

Japan's tornado climatology
Tornadoes are rare in Japan, due to the fact the nation is surrounded by ocean, which tends to stabilize the air. Between 1961 - 2010, an average of 15 tornadoes per year hit Japan, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency. Only four F-3 tornadoes have hit Japan. The most recent F-3 hit on November 7, 2006, in the Wakasa area of Saroma, Hokkaido. Nine people died and 26 were injured. Over 30 buildings, including a dwelling, warehouses and temporary structures were damaged or destroyed. No violent F-4 or F-5 tornadoes have been recorded in Japan, according the Japan Meteorological Agency, though other sources list a December, 1990 tornado as having been an F-4. Wunderground's weather historian Christopher C. Burt has more details in his latest post, Deadliest Tornadoes. Only one F-2 tornado hit Japan in both 2010 and 2011. A 1997 study published in the Journal of Climate found that Japanese tornadoes occurred most frequently in September and least frequently in March, and that typhoons were responsible for about 20% of all the tornadoes. A list of Asian tornado outbreaks maintained at Wikipedia lists the deadliest Japanese tornado as one on 6 September, 1881, which killed 16 people.


Figure 1. Distribution of tornadoes in Japan, 1961 - 2010. Image credit: Japan Meteorological Agency.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Patrap:
..relax, and enjoy a nice cold Fresca.

The Season is only weeks away.


Yes, indeed it is, as chaos spreads across the globe it will be fun to watch
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625
Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:
Rather benign Atlantic SST anomalies






North Atlantic cooled quite a bit compared to last week.



Here is today's SST Anomaly
Member Since: November 6, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 7480
..relax, and enjoy a nice cold Fresca.

The Season is only weeks away.



Courtesy: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio

'Towers in the Tempest' is a narrated animation that explains recent scientific insights into how hurricanes intensify. This intensification can be caused by a phenomenon called a 'hot tower'. For the first time, research meteorologists have run complex simulations using a very fine temporal resolution of 3 minutes. Combining this simulation data with satellite observations enables detailed study of 'hot towers'. The science of 'hot towers' is described using: observed hurricane data from a satellite, descriptive illustrations, and volumetric visualizations of simulation data. The first section of the animation shows actual data from Hurricane Bonnie observed by NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) spacecraft. Three dimensional precipitation radar data reveal a strong 'hot tower' in Hurricane Bonnie's internal structure. The second section uses illustrations to show the dynamics of a hurricane and the formation of 'hot towers'. 'Hot towers' are formed as air spirals inward towards the eye and is forced rapidly upwards, accelerating the movement of energy into high altitude clouds. The third section shows these processes using volumetric cloud, wind, and vorticity data from a supercomputer simulation of Hurricane Bonnie. Vertical wind speed data highlights a 'hot tower'. Arrows representing the wind field move rapidly up into the 'hot tower, boosting the energy and intensifying the hurricane. Combining satellite observations with super-computer simulations provides a powerful tool for studying Earth's complex systems.

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Quoting Patrap:
.."the times they are a-changing"..


Putin in Russia was re-elected, people outraged
Europe about to spin into another crisis
Wall Street about to spin into another crisis
America about to spin into another crisis
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625
.."the times they are a-changing"..
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Quoting aspectre:
15 Chucktown A little Monday morning comedy about farting dinosaurs and how it contributed to climate change!!

I'd hope that the "reporter" knew that someone hadda be joking.
"The chief culprits...were 100-foot-long plant-gouging sauropods, which weighed up to 80 tons and had enormous appetites...[and]...over the course of 150 years, collectively produced 520 metric tons of methane, more than all of today's sources put together."
Which means that all of them thar dinosaurs were putting out a total of ~3.5tonnes of methane per year.

To start with, either there were less than a handful of the critters, or they had unbelievably efficient digestive systems. Then there's...
"Globally, ruminant livestock produce about 80million metric tons of methane annually, accounting for about 28% of global methane emissions from human-related activities."



Different "facts" in this version, 520 tons annually.
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Quoting WxGeekVA:


Oh I listen to my doctor all right. I mean, he IS paid 6 figures to know what he is doing... He says MCL tear but possible ACL damage too, MRI is later this week to let swelling to down but I'm on crutches and no sports for 8 weeks. God I hope this doesn't end my sports career before it even starts!


Sssssss. I hope it is not too ssssssssserious.
I am the only one who ssssssseems to never have hurt anything. :)......sssss.
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9467
Rather benign Atlantic SST anomalies






North Atlantic cooled quite a bit compared to last week.


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15 Chucktown A little Monday morning comedy about farting dinosaurs and how it contributed to climate change!!

I'd hope that the "reporter" knew that someone hadda be joking.
"The chief culprits...were 100-foot-long plant-gouging sauropods, which weighed up to 80 tons and had enormous appetites...[and]...over the course of 150 years, collectively produced 520 metric tons of methane, more than all of today's sources put together."
Which means that all of them thar dinosaurs were putting out a total of ~3.5tonnes of methane per year.

To start with, each cow emits ~65kilograms of methane per year. So all of those critters combined would have had to produce about as much methane as 53 cows.
A sauropod must have had an unbelievably efficient digestive system for that to be true. And even if they did, there couldn't have been more than a handful of them.

Then there's " Globally, ruminant livestock produce about 80million metric tons of methane annually, accounting for about 28% of global methane emissions from human-related activities."
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Quoting hydrus:
Hang in there. They have come a long way in knee surgery. A skiing accident in the very early 80,s left a friend of mine in really bad shape because there was not much they could do back then. He suffers to this very day. Day 6 shows a front hanging in the gulf.


I think that's what the GFS is trying to make something out of. But seems to lose it as it moves east. Would be interesting to see if they call this right. Getting that time of year.

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Quoting nigel20:
May 7, 2012 SST Anomaly



The warm anomaly near Peru might be the start of an El Nino. Too early to tell yet, but more than 1,200 dead pelicans and 800 dead dolphins have recently been found washed up on the shore there. Preliminary investigations suggest malnutrition. The anchovies have moved away due to the warmer SSTs.

The waters off Peru are usually teeming with fish due to a nutrient rich upwelling cold current. This supports a huge population of sea birds. During the 1997 El Nino, sea bird populations crashed to around just 1% of normal.

If we are in for an El Nino this year, the combination of that and the peak of the solar cycle in 2013 could well set us up for a record breaking global average temperature in 2013.

http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/peru-m arine-animal-die-offs-a-1/64883
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Quoting WxGeekVA:


Oh I listen to my doctor all right. I mean, he IS paid 6 figures to know what he is doing... He says MCL tear but possible ACL damage too, MRI is later this week to let swelling to down but I'm on crutches and no sports for 8 weeks. God I hope this doesn't end my sports career before it even starts!

With proper recovery, you should be good. 8 weeks is "if you're lucky". Your knee muscles will be rather atrophied after 8 weeks laid up, so you probably won't be 100% for 4 months or so. Plan on not being 100% until 6 months, so you don't push yourself too hard, and blow your ACL.

Also, don't be shocked if he wants to do surgery, or an exploratory scope of your knee. At your age, better to be safe than sorry. If you have any questions, feel free to WUmail me... I will try to put my nursing knowledge to use for ya. :)

Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5793
May 6, 2011

May 6, 2012
Member Since: November 6, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 7480
NASA Weather 'Eye in the Sky' Marks 10 Years

ScienceDaily (May 7, 2012) — For 10 years, it has silently swooped through space in its orbital perch 438 miles (705 kilometers) above Earth, its nearly 2,400 spectral "eyes" peering into Earth's atmosphere, watching. But there's nothing alien about NASA's Atmospheric Infrared Sounder, or AIRS, instrument, a "monster" of weather and climate research that celebrates its 10th birthday in orbit May 4.............

Link



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Good rain in Wimberley too.
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31. hydrus

Amazing imagery. :) I couldn't imagine a cold cyclone.
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Quoting WxGeekVA:


Oh I listen to my doctor all right. I mean, he IS paid 6 figures to know what he is doing... He says MCL tear but possible ACL damage too, MRI is later this week to let swelling to down but I'm on crutches and no sports for 8 weeks. God I hope this doesn't end my sports career before it even starts!


Please be careful. My son was in a similar situation but the issue was with his shoulder. Even though we followed doctor's advice he didnt come out so well. Was an awesome baseball player and was throwing low nineties in high school ...now he has had a partial shoulder replacement and has kissed his baseball career goodbye ..although he is now a college coach.

Dont know if you work out or not but make sure you dont concentrate on just certain muscle groups ...hit them all. My son was a lot stronger in his chest than he was in his back and that caused some issues. Also, the stretching excersises are a great way to balance things out ...should consider yoga

I truly wish you the best and will keep you in my positive thoughts
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Quoting WxGeekVA:


Oh I listen to my doctor all right. I mean, he IS paid 6 figures to know what he is doing... He says MCL tear but possible ACL damage too, MRI is later this week to let swelling to down but I'm on crutches and no sports for 8 weeks. God I hope this doesn't end my sports career before it even starts!


You don't have that much to worry about even if it is a serious tear. Medical procedures in sports related injuries have come so far. I have had two arthroscopic knee surgeries, the first coming when they were a relatively new procedure. 6 - 8 week recovery time, now its down to about 3 - 4 weeks. Anyways, best of luck, here's to hoping its not that serious!
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Quoting WxGeekVA:


Oh I listen to my doctor all right. I mean, he IS paid 6 figures to know what he is doing... He says MCL tear but possible ACL damage too, MRI is later this week to let swelling to down but I'm on crutches and no sports for 8 weeks. God I hope this doesn't end my sports career before it even starts!
Hang in there. They have come a long way in knee surgery. A skiing accident in the very early 80,s left a friend of mine in really bad shape because there was not much they could do back then. He suffers to this very day. Day 6 shows a front hanging in the gulf.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 19606
Quoting RitaEvac:


All the way to Halletsville
Nice!
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Quoting entrelac:
It took us totally by surprise. It was not forecasted and once the storms were underway they were not expected to last as long as they did. It rained from about 11:30pm to around 3am and then drizzled up until around 9am on the north side of Austin.

My garden was grateful.


All the way to Halletsville
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625
Quoting jeffs713:

An ACL tear is the one you have to worry about. MCL has the shortest recovery time, but you have to be very careful, as when you are recovering, your ACL and PCL are at increased risk of a tear. More than anything.. LISTEN to your Dr.


Oh I listen to my doctor all right. I mean, he IS paid 6 figures to know what he is doing... He says MCL tear but possible ACL damage too, MRI is later this week to let swelling to down but I'm on crutches and no sports for 8 weeks. God I hope this doesn't end my sports career before it even starts!
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May 6, 2011

May 6, 2012

Member Since: November 6, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 7480
Surface analyses at 12 UTC and 18 UTC (below) indicated that there was a strong pressure gradient over the region, between the High over the Arctic Ocean and a deepening Low over far northern Canada. The effect of this tightening pressure gradient was strong offshore (easterly) winds %u2014 the closest available observation site was Sachs Harbour on Banks Island, where they had easterly winds of 25 knots with gusts to 30 knots, and zero visibility with heavy snow and heavy blowing snow at 22 UTC.From CIMMS-AWIPS images of Suomi NPP VIIRS 0.64 %uFFFDm visible channel data (above) and 11.45 %uFFFDm IR channel data (below) showed cloud and ice features over the Arctic Ocean on 28 April 2012. For geographic reference, station identifier CWMD is Mould Bay, located on Prince Patrick Island in the far northwestern portion of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago.

The meteorological cloud features at this time were fairly benign, with some low stratus seen over the northern portion of the satellite scene, and multi-level clouds associated with a cyclone developing to the south. Of particular interest was the amount of sea ice motion during this relatively short 8-hour period %u2014 several ice leads opened up and became very prominent features on both the visible and the IR imagery.
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Quoting RitaEvac:


I can't believe that all happen that night, that wasn't forecasted and it was all the way east down I-10 not too far from SE TX
It took us totally by surprise. It was not forecasted and once the storms were underway they were not expected to last as long as they did. It rained from about 11:30pm to around 3am and then drizzled up until around 9am on the north side of Austin.

My garden was grateful.
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Quoting hydrus:
If it is a tear, your tendon will probably not heal to be as strong as it was. Let me know how the MRI turns out. Big dip in the jet bringing cooler weather this week..


Yes keep these weak fronts coming to FL as we need the rain!!
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Quoting hydrus:
GFS in a week looks rather tranquil..


Up north yes but from TX to FL looks very wet for a long time to come. Yes we may have a dry day here or there but overall the pattern is looking very unsetteled.

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Quoting MahFL:


er no, lightning causes fires, not puts them out.....
This was impressive cloud to cloud. The non-fire-starting-enjoyable-to-watch kind.
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Quoting nigel20:
Interesting system north of Puerto Rico in 84 hours.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 19606
GFS in a week looks rather tranquil..
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 19606
May 7, 2012 SST Anomaly
Member Since: November 6, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 7480
Quoting WxGeekVA:


I'm 17 so that's not good to hear right now lol! But thanks for the support everyone, glad to know I have friends in the Wunder Community! :)

An ACL tear is the one you have to worry about. MCL has the shortest recovery time, but you have to be very careful, as when you are recovering, your ACL and PCL are at increased risk of a tear. More than anything.. LISTEN to your Dr.
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5793
GOES Imager Cloud Top Pressure
May 07, 2012 - 13:45 UTC
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 19606
Can anyone provide insight into the atmospheric dynamics for the Japan twister? Same SW-NE travel we see? Same Shear/Cape values?

I noticed in the Toulouse, France video last week that the sky was very blue just outside the cyclone. And no real signs of shelf clouds, etc...
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Member Since: November 6, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 7480
Quoting DavidHOUTX:


lmao yes I am pretty sure. It was quite a lightning show. I saw the storms out in Mason County around 6:30 that night and didn't think it would make it to Austin, but it sure made it and strengthen as it got to Austin. I had a friend down from NY and he was saying he has never seen lightning like that in his life haha. I guess they don't get that stuff up there


Would be like us never seeing the Auroras
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625
Good morning all...thanks Dr. Masters. On the EF scale, could the Japanese tornado be classified as An EF3?
Member Since: November 6, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 7480
China pollution is choking southern Japan. The borderline between clear sky and smog is where the tornado happened. I don't know if it's related, but it certainly could be.

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Quoting entrelac:
Central TX is finally going to see some rain. Thank goodness because all the dry weeds from Spring were starting to make everyone nervous about wild fires.

Hopefully it's also a spectacular light show like the storms Sat night/Sun morning were.


er no, lightning causes fires, not puts them out.....
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A little Monday morning comedy about farting dinosaurs and how it contributed to climate change !!

Link
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Quoting RitaEvac:


You sure all that lightning wasn't just in your drunken head on 6th St?!


lmao yes I am pretty sure. It was quite a lightning show. I saw the storms out in Mason County around 6:30 that night and didn't think it would make it to Austin, but it sure made it and strengthen as it got to Austin. I had a friend down from NY and he was saying he has never seen lightning like that in his life haha. I guess they don't get that stuff up there
Member Since: August 18, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 597
Quoting DavidHOUTX:


That was very impressive Saturday night. I was down on 6th street in Austin Saturday night until about 2:30 am and I was in ahhh watching that lightning show. It was quite impressive and Austin finally got some much needed rain. They could still use a whole lot more!


You sure all that lightning wasn't just in your drunken head on 6th St?!
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625
Quoting entrelac:
Central TX is finally going to see some rain. Thank goodness because all the dry weeds from Spring were starting to make everyone nervous about wild fires.

Hopefully it's also a spectacular light show like the storms Sat night/Sun morning were.


That was very impressive Saturday night. I was down on 6th street in Austin Saturday night until about 2:30 am and I was in ahhh watching that lightning show. It was quite impressive and Austin finally got some much needed rain. They could still use a whole lot more!
Member Since: August 18, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 597
Quoting hydrus:
If it is a tear, your tendon will probably not heal to be as strong as it was. Let me know how the MRI turns out. Big dip in the jet bringing cooler weather this week..


I'm 17 so that's not good to hear right now lol! But thanks for the support everyone, glad to know I have friends in the Wunder Community! :)
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10. MTWX
Quoting hydrus:
If it is a tear, your tendon will probably not heal to be as strong as it was. Let me know how the MRI turns out. Big dip in the jet bringing cooler weather this week..


Looking foward to the rain forecasted here for today, and the cooler temps!! Yesterday it hit 93 with a 98 heat index!
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Quoting entrelac:
Central TX is finally going to see some rain. Thank goodness because all the dry weeds from Spring were starting to make everyone nervous about wild fires.

Hopefully it's also a spectacular light show like the storms Sat night/Sun morning were.


I can't believe that all happen that night, that wasn't forecasted and it was all the way east down I-10 not too far from SE TX
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625
Quoting WxGeekVA:


Thanks Hydrus. Hoping to not have surgery, depends on what grade tear it is. I'm about to have an MRI to tell but the doctor says probably just rest, crutches, and a brace for a few weeks unless it looks really bad on the MRI.

Yep, looks like a pretty large slight risk area today too. Plenty of strong boomers around today!
If it is a tear, your tendon will probably not heal to be as strong as it was. Let me know how the MRI turns out. Big dip in the jet bringing cooler weather this week..
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 19606
Thanks for the update Dr. Masters. Japan just can't seem to catch a break right now. Happily its raining a long slow rain here in Memphis this morning!!
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Couple more hours of heating and thunderstorms should explode as clouds are already building here.

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Quoting RitaEvac:
Central TX is finally going to see some rain. Thank goodness because all the dry weeds from Spring were starting to make everyone nervous about wild fires.

Hopefully it's also a spectacular light show like the storms Sat night/Sun morning were.
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AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MELBOURNE FL
913 AM EDT MON MAY 7 2012


.DISCUSSION...

...FEW STRONG/ISOLATED SEVERE STORMS THIS AFTERNOON/EVENING...

CURRENT-TONIGHT...LOW (STRATUS) CLOUDS NEAR AND NORTH OF THE I-4
CORRIDOR WILL BREAK UP OVER THE NEXT COUPLE HOURS...THOUGH EXPECT
SKIES OVERALL TO BECOME CONSIDERABLY CLOUDY ACROSS MUCH OF EAST
CENTRAL FLORIDA THIS AFTERNOON. WEAK FRONTAL BOUNDARY DRAPED ACROSS
THE NORTHERN COVERAGE WARNING AREA THIS MORNING. THIS FEATURE SHOULD
SLOWLY SAG SOUTHWARD THROUGH THE DAY AND BE A FOCUS FOR AFTERNOON
SHOWER AND THUNDERSTORM DEVELOPMENT. MORNING 10Z KXMR SOUNDING SHOWS
A PWAT OF 1.45 INCHES AND A 500 MB TEMPERATURE OF -11.5C. A VERY
WEAK PRESSURE GRADIENT WILL ALLOW FOR BOTH THE EAST/WEST SEA BREEZE
BOUNDARIES TO PENETRATE INLAND EARLY IN THE DAY. MID-LEVEL IMPULSES
WILL ALSO AID IN CONVECTIVE DEVELOPMENT THROUGH THE DAY.
SCATTERED
SHOWER AND LIGHTNING STORM DEVELOPMENT SEEMS LIKE A GOOD BET TODAY
INTO THE EVENING DUE THE ABOVE MENTIONED AND VARIOUS BOUNDARY
COLLISIONS EXPECTED. COIN SIZE HAIL...TORRENTIAL
DOWNPOURS...FREQUENT LIGHTNING STRIKES AND GUSTY DOWNBURST WINDS TO
AROUND 50 MPH WILL ALL BE IN PLAY FOR AFTERNOON/EVENING STORMS.
GREATEST CHANCES FOR STORMS WILL EXIST ORLANDO METRO NORTHWARD AND
TOWARD THE COAST.

STILL A WARM DAY EXPECTED AND WILL SEE IF INCREASED CLOUD COVER HAS
AN IMPACT ON FORECAST TEMPERATURES IN THE MID/UPPER 80S ALONG THE
COAST AND UPPER 80S/LOW 90S INTO THE INTERIOR.
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651

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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.