Severe thunderstorms erupt along a swath 1,500 miles long, killing 2

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:48 PM GMT on July 27, 2012

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A huge outbreak of severe thunderstorms hit the nation on Thursday, causing damage in fifteen states and knocking out power to over 250,000 customers. Two people were killed, one by a falling tree in Pennsylvania, and one due to a lightning strike in New York. Two possible tornadoes touched down: one in Elmira, New York and another in Brookville, PA. The severe storms covered an unusually large area, erupting along a 1,500-mile long swath of the country from Texas to Connecticut. The intensity of the thunderstorms was increased by a very hot and moist airmass; temperatures in the mid to upper 90s were common across the region Thursday. A number of record highs for the date were set, including a 98° reading at Washington D.C.'s Dulles Airport. The threat of severe weather continues for Friday afternoon over portions of the Ohio Valley and mid-Atlantic, as NOAA's Storm Prediction Center has placed these regions in their "Slight Risk" area for severe thunderstorms.


Figure 1. A rare sight: at 7 pm EDT on July 26, 2012, severe thunderstorm warnings were in effect for 132 counties in 15 states along a swath 1,500 miles long.


Figure 2. Visible satellite image taken at 7:02 pm EDT July 26, 2012, of the line of severe thunderstorms that extended from Texas to Connecticut. Image credit: NASA/GSFC.


Figure 3. An imposing sight: A squall line of severe thunderstorms with two bowing segments takes aim at New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey on July 26, 2012. The tip of a bow echo typically has the most violent winds in a severe thunderstorm.

Was Thursday's outbreak a derecho?
Thursday's outbreak of severe thunderstorms was not nearly as violent as the June 29 - 30 Mid-Atlantic and Midwest derecho, since the atmosphere wasn't as unstable. The June 29 storm was one of the most destructive and deadly severe thunderstorm complexes in North American history. It killed 22 people, knocked out power to at least 3.7 million customers, and did hundreds of millions in damage. There were 871 reports of damaging winds logged by the next day, and 36 of the thunderstorms had wind gusts in excess of hurricane force--74 mph. In contrast, yesterday's event had only two thunderstorms with wind gusts in excess of 74 mph, and 383 reports of damaging winds. We can probably classify yesterday's severe thunderstorm event as a weak derecho, since it met the main criteria, as defined by NOAA's Storm Prediction Center: "A derecho is a widespread, long-lived wind storm that is associated with a band of rapidly moving showers or thunderstorms. Although a derecho can produce destruction similar to that of tornadoes, the damage typically is directed in one direction along a relatively straight swath. As a result, the term "straight-line wind damage" sometimes is used to describe derecho damage. By definition, if the wind damage swath extends more than 240 miles (about 400 kilometers) and includes wind gusts of at least 58 mph (93 km/h) or greater along most of its length, then the event may be classified as a derecho."


Figure 4. NOAA's Storm Prediction Center logged 374 reports of damaging winds from Thursday's severe thunderstorms. Two of these thunderstorms had winds in excess of hurricane force (65 knots, or 74 mph.)


Figure 5. The climatology of derecho events over the U.S. Image credit: NOAA Storm Prediction Center.

Quiet in the Atlantic
There are no tropical cyclone threat areas to discuss in the Atlantic. A strong tropical wave is expected to bring heavy rains to the Lesser Antilles Islands and Puerto Rico on Monday and Tuesday, but none of the models are developing the wave. The NOGAPS computer model is suggesting development of a second tropical wave between Africa and the Lesser Antilles Islands August 2 - 3.

Have a great Olympic weekend, everyone, and I'll be back Monday with a new post.

Jeff Masters

Intense (jerseyshoretoo)
We had high winds and heavy rain, but fortunately not serious damage. Prayers for everyone in the path of this massive storm.
Intense
Crazy Lightning in Rhode Island (ExitPupilCreative)
Lightning from storms that slammed the Northeast today. This is at Charlestown Beach in Charlestown, Rhode Island.
Crazy Lightning in Rhode Island
BeforeTheStorm (CalicoBass)
at times there were gust of wind that would stir up the dirt as you can see to the right in this photo. We finally got a real good rain that lasted a while. Was under one Severe Thunderstorm Warning.
BeforeTheStorm
Swirling clouds (Crisred)
As the strom approaches the clouds are rolling over themselves and swirling into each other. Rapidly!
Swirling clouds
Shelf Cloud over the Bronx (JimTheWunder)
Taken just before thunderstorm.
Shelf Cloud over the Bronx

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Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
Quoting kmanislander:


10 is not too low. Ivan was classified as a TD at 9.8 N


Wish you had picked a less nasty example, Ivan was BAD and 2004 was also not a good year for Florida. Keep on thinking this year reminds me of 2004, with a beginning el nino and a Azores high in a bad position...Maybe I need to climb in the attic again and see if I can add hurricane straps to my house...
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1779. nigel20
Quoting kmanislander:
I'm out for tonight. Have a good one all.

Same here! Have a good night fellow bloggers.
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Hi Kman. What are your numbers for the season? Mines are 12/7/3.
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 15670
Deleted
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I'm out for tonight. Have a good one all.
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Quoting yoboi:


i think his back is messed up still he don't swim the same ya can see it..


i highly doubt it
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Head of internal medicine at Japan hospital astonished by Fukushima thyroid exams Immediate evacuation required in high contamination areas A violation of human rights for those exposed

Published: July 28th, 2012 at 10:07 pm


Title: Position Statement: What Is Currently Happening to Fukushima Children?

Source: Michiyuki Matsuzaki, M.D.Translated by: Fukushima

VoiceLinkDate: May 19, 2012Michiyuki Matsuzaki, M.D., Internal Medicine Department, Fukagawa Municipal Hospital, Hokkaido, Japan April 2010 Head of Internal Medicine Department, Fukagawa Municipal Hospital, Hokkaido April 2012 Professor of Clinical Administration, Asahikawa Medical University, Hokkaido May 2012 Special member of Cancer Policy Board, Hokkaido Prefecture [...]

When the above four studies are tallied in one table, it becomes obvious that the result of the thyroid examinations of children in the Fukushima Prefecture Health Management Survey is astonishing. This is because one-third of the children had developed cysts. A cyst is a fluid-filled sac. Cysts don t mean there is an immediate chance of developing thyroid cancer. However, it is apparent that something extraordinary is happening inside the thyroid gland, such as inflammation or changes in cellular properties.

[...] Summarizing the thyroid ultrasound examination results from Japan and overseas, prevalence of cysts detected in children around the age of 10 is approximately 0.5-1.0%. The fact that 35% of Fukushima children (average age around 10) have thyroid cysts strongly suggests that these children s thyroid glands are negatively affected by undesirable environmental factors. There is a strong concern that waiting for further analysis of above data and the completion of follow-up examinations will lead to irreversible health damages in these children. Consequently, it is strongly desired that small children living in Nakadori (adjacent to the coastal region) and Hamadori (the coastal region) in Fukushima receive immediate implementation of preventive measures such as evacuation and more frequent screening examinations. Based on above findings, a letter from Shunichi Yamashita to thyroid specialists all over Japan, instructing them not to offer second opinions to concerned families, can only be considered a repressive conduct: a violation of human rights for those exposed to radiation and current patients.

It is clear that an immediate evacuation from highly contaminated areas is imperative in order to prevent a possibility of irreversible health damages in children with future potential for life and improved health. This is the lesson we must all learn from the tragedy of Chernobyl.

Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9899
Quoting Chucktown:


Just a note, if you want to work for SPC, you have to start with the NWS and then work your way up. You just don't start at SPC. And don't forget, SPC, NHC, NWS all fall under NOAA. NOAA falls under the Chamber of Commerce. This may help.

Link


thats why i said end up in the SPC...
and its all part of NOAA..
thx for the link

wonder if they'll stay under commerce forever.
Some people want them to move
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Quoting Huracaneer:
Well the 18Z GFS does not show anything impressive. Is 10N a little too low for that wave to develop (the one at 30W)?


10 is not too low. Ivan was classified as a TD at 9.8 N
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Quoting Tazmanian:



ike has his own life this like the rest of us do he likey got in too busy too blog


Blogging is a hobby. Night time stuff and the odd post during the day, depending on what's happening out there. Seems to be a new generation of WU bloggers though. I do not know many that post here now.
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Quoting ilovehurricanes13:
tropical wave update!!


THE NEW LEVI! true it does have a nice spin
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Well the 18Z GFS does not show anything impressive. Is 10N a little too low for that wave to develop (the one at 30W)?
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


hoping to end up in the SPC and work my way up...
hopefully ill be able a PHD and eventually do some research.


Just a note, if you want to work for SPC, you have to start with the NWS and then work your way up. You just don't start at SPC. And don't forget, SPC, NHC, NWS all fall under NOAA. NOAA falls under the Chamber of Commerce. This may help.

Link
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Quoting ENSO2012:


Yes, and MLC, 456, I can go on, and on, and on.

At any rate, IDK, truthfully. He stopped posting after '09. I hope he and his wife are doing well. They're from the Florida panhandle.


MLC was on yesterday.
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Quoting kmanislander:


I do, and guys like Nash. Whatever happened to Ike ?



ike has his own life this like the rest of us do he likey got in too busy too blog
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5095 Comments: 116138
Quoting yoboi:


phelps just don't look the same....


unlike the other wimpy sports...(jk).....swimming is a sport in which you cant take any breaks.
It takes nearly 4 times as long as you were gone to get back to the shape you were in before you stopped swimming.
So even a 1 week vacation is a bad idea.
His follies in taking a break in 2009/2010 should not affect him as much in shorter events.
But enough on Michael.
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Quoting ENSO2012:
Hey K, ya expecting any Caribbean cruisers this fall?


Hard to say. Looking like an average season.
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1756. nigel20
Quoting yoboi:


phelps just don't look the same....

Agreed.
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Quoting kmanislander:


With the MJO absent we are in for a quiet spell.

Or we may be dealing with Ernesto in 4 days.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 34218
Quoting ENSO2012:


Speaking of which, remember Ike?


I do, and guys like Nash. Whatever happened to Ike ?
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Quoting Tribucanes:
Who is the new JFV all are speaking of?




jfv been a round sic 2007 but the admins have bannd is jfv name but he keeps comeing back with new names so he dos not norml last long here


he is now called ENSO2012
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5095 Comments: 116138
Quoting Huracaneer:


If it can survive the very dry conditions, maybe that's the one the GFS it's talking about. It's got a long way to go to threaten any land but it should give this forum something to think it's teeth into, heck we could be tracking it for many days (or not).


With the MJO absent we are in for a quiet spell.
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Where are my storm shutters...... forget it, its only Nogaps...

Link

Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9899
Who is the new JFV all are speaking of?
Member Since: April 18, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 2437
Quoting yoboi:


it's got to be hard to just give up they train all there life for it....


I know what you mean. Nothing worse than looking in the mirror and seeing reality.
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1742. JLPR2
Quoting yoboi:


???


Eh... don't pay attention to him, trying to start a problem with someone who also speaks Spanish. Bleh...
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Quoting JLPR2:


Really Taz? You think we didn't figure that one out? XD




lol i all realdy reported him too wunder blog admin so am fast when it comees too reporting jfv
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5095 Comments: 116138
Quoting ENSO2012:


Highly doubtful with you around, Big K!


Many new faces here but lots of regulars gone. Very sad.
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Quoting kmanislander:


It is a spin. Surface low with that feature.


If it can survive the very dry conditions, maybe that's the one the GFS it's talking about. It's got a long way to go to threaten any land but it should give this forum something to think it's teeth into, heck we could be tracking it for many days (or not).
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1738. nigel20
Quoting yoboi:



phelps also been fighting back problems...he not the same..

Bolt had the same problem, but he said that he's 95 Percent fit in an interview with the BBC.
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yup
Member Since: April 18, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 2437
Quoting ilovehurricanes13:
Link watch the low spin on this link and zoom in to
I agree. It has an obvious spin.
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Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

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