Several news websites posted reports today that the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the federal agency in charge of recording and studying earthquakes, issued a "rare earthquake warning" for Oklahoma. They did issue a statement saying that a strong earthquake could happen in the future, but using the term "warning" is pure hype.
If you look off towards the eastern horizon around 4 AM local time tomorrow and Wednesday, you might be able to see a couple of meteors thanks to the Eta Aquarids, caused by dust left behind by Halley's Comet. However, thanks to widespread cloud cover, it might be worth it to catch a few extra hours of sleep instead.
Numerous fires are burning across portions of the Plains this afternoon, including one north of Oklahoma City that officials are describing as quite large. This animated satellite image shows where the fires are located (bright spots), followed by a visible satellite image showing the smoke spreading northeast.
Today is the 15th anniversary of the devastating F5 tornado that tore through Moore, Bridge Creek, and Newcastle in Oklahoma on May 3, 1999. The tornado remains the strongest ever observed (a Doppler-on-Wheels measured winds of 301 MPH) and the analog to which all major tornadoes were compared up until Joplin in 2011. Over ten thousand structures were damaged or destroyed in the storm, and three dozen people lost their lives.
When you check the day's temperature or see if it's going to rain on your way to work, the answer can vary widely depending on where you look. Luckily, the website ForecastAdvisor—which grades the accuracy of U.S. forecasting outlets such as The Weather Channel, National Weather Service (NWS), CustomWeather, and AccuWeather—can help you sort the good from the bad. If you head over to their site you can plug in your zip code and see your local numbers, but they were kind enough to provide us with their raw data for 2013, and the results are pretty surprising.
Check out this excellent interactive feature created by Brian Crumpler on the Mayflower/Vilonia, Arkansas EF-4 tornado that touched down on Sunday. The feature blends together radar images, maps, and pictures of the damage to give you an in-depth look at how the tornado evolved along its 40-mile path.
An office worker took this insane video of a tornado that reportedly hit an office building in Nonatola, Italy yesterday afternoon. The guy foolishly stands by a window while the twister tears up nearby buildings, before running for safety just as windows break and debris start crashing through the office.
A high resolution satellite image of the thunderstorms that produced historic amounts of rain on the northern Gulf Coast on Tuesday. Pensacola recorded over 15" of rain and Mobile recorded nearly 12". When the storms first began, Mobile Regional Airport recorded rainfall rates of 12 inches per hour for a few minutes.
Dozens of National Weather Service offices around the country issued 1,232 severe weather warnings as dangerous storms raked the eastern two-thirds of the United States. The map beautifully illustrates where the worst outbreaks occurred, as well as the general southwest-to-northeast path that the severe storms took.
I knew the tornado outbreak across the south on Monday was bad, but damn.
The worst tornado outbreak to strike the Deep South in nearly two years came to an end yesterday after killing almost three dozen people and damaging hundreds of buildings. Meteorologists for the National Weather Service did an incredible job predicting the outbreak days before it happened, and they're directly responsible for saving countless lives.
Between 10 and 15 inches of rain fell along the northern Gulf Coast in less than 24 hours yesterday, resulting in catastrophic flash flooding in cities along Interstate 10 from Mobile, Alabama to Pensacola, Florida. The National Weather Service issued a "flash flood emergency" for much of the area as both waterways and infrastructure were overwhelmed by the copious amounts of rain.