Gone are the days of temperatures in the 90s as the southern U.S. finally joins the rest of the country in the damp, dreary experience that is the arrival of fall. A ribbon of moisture direct from the tropical Pacific Ocean will team up with an approaching low to dump loads of heavy, much-needed rain on the south in the coming days.
Have you had a chance to dry out from Rainpocalypse 2015? I hope so! We’re getting ready to see significant amounts of rain across the central U.S. in a short amount of time, and flash flood watches are in place in anticipation of this environmental ablution as we trudge through the first full week of July.
Three days after landfall and after traveling over more than 850 miles of land, Bill is still a tropical depression as it swirls over Missouri. The storm has produced catastrophic flooding along its path, and more flooding is likely through the Ohio Valley and eventually into the I-95 corridor of the Mid-Atlantic.
As Tropical Depression Bill swirls its way through northern Texas this afternoon, the storm looks more impressive over land than it ever did over the ocean. The storm is still producing very heavy rainfall, and flash flooding is likely as it continues sloshing towards Oklahoma and eventually the Midwest.
Today is the two-year anniversary of the largest tornado ever recorded. The tornado, a multiple-vortex EF-3 (by damage, EF-5 by radar measurements) grew to an astonishing width of 2.6 miles at its widest. The storm killed eight people, including three highly experienced storm chasers caught by the tornado’s explosive growth and erratic movement of the smaller vortices within the larger circulation.
The recent rains over the southern Plains have been nothing less than spectacular, spawning a constant stream of severe thunderstorms that dumped inches of rain in short time, flooding areas that haven’t seen this much in years. The influx of water finally paid off: only a few small parts of Texas and Oklahoma are still in drought.
It’s been a crazy month for severe weather on the southern Plains, with Texas and Oklahoma making a spectacular recovery from drought by drowning under more rain than they’ve seen in years. Leaving behind hundreds of victims and millions (if not billions) of dollars in damage, the rain will finally start to subside this week.
It just keeps getting worse. The gully-washers and toad-stranglers are in full force across Texas and Oklahoma at this hour as the region stares down the barrel of more heavy rain and flooding after years of thirsting for some delicious sky water. Some spots could see double-digit rainfall totals by this time next week.
Fresh off of Wednesday’s calamity in Oklahoma City involving supercells and tigers, the region is preparing for another two full days under the threat of a significant, multi-day tornado outbreak. Some of the tornadoes that form on Friday and Saturday could be intense and long-lived, accompanied by hail larger than baseballs and destructive wind gusts.
If it's daytime in mid-April, it means that there's a risk for severe weather somewhere on the Plains. Texas will be ground zero for the storms for the next few days—today, cities like San Antonio, Austin, Dallas, Fort Worth, and Amarillo could all see hail larger than golf balls, damaging winds, and possibly a tornado or two. Insert your favorite "everything's bigger in Texas" joke here.
Things are going to get interesting in a hurry across the central part of the country this evening as severe thunderstorms rapidly develop in the moist, unstable air pumping in from the tropics. These dangerous thunderstorms even have the potential to produce a few tornadoes, some of which could be strong and stay on the ground for a while.
The National Weather Service failed to issue a tornado warning in Moore, Oklahoma, when a preliminary EF-1 tornado made a mess of the town for the sixth time in as many years on Wednesday. AccuWeather wasted no time blasting the agency for its failure while trumpeting their own success in warning clients twelve minutes before the storm struck. There's only one problem—their brand new television network didn't cover the storm, either.
Today is the second day of a two-part severe weather outbreak across the Plains states, with giant thunderstorms blowing up over Oklahoma and Arkansas. The storms have the potential to produce hail up to the size of tennis balls, so naturally, storm chasers are speeding towards them in hopes of catching nature at its fiercest.