(The title of this blog was changed 6/14/13; apparently some of my readers did not like my Wu-Tang style.)
UPDATE: As Scott comments below, make sure to check this animation out: "Here's a hi-res Suomi NPP VIIRS IR image with overlays of SPC severe reports and lightning data: http://go.wisc.edu/9cf0aj"
There is much drama afoot on the Internet this morning as to whether or not last night's storm classified as a derecho. As I said with last year's storm, it really depends on how you measure it. The official definition is vague enough to go either way, and the public doesn't really care. The point is: It was a long-track, damaging group of thunderstorms and I hopefully the media prepared everyone for it sufficiently. In fact, I hope we overprepared people, because it's better than underprepared.
When the tip of the bow echo came through State College, Pa., this morning, it was a sight to see. I awoke so dumbfounded that I couldn't grab a camera in time to film more than the trail end of it. What I didn't catch on film was near-zero visibility and large trees bending like during a hurricane. This may have been the strongest storm that I've seen since living in State College. My weather station gusted to 54 mph, which is probably the #2 reading (if not #1) that I've measured since I moved here in 1997. (Cnt'd below)
It looked like the "Hurricane Henry" video from 2010. I wished that I had prepared better, but being on the edge of the Slight Risk and with the HRRR model insisting the line would weaken, I hadn't prepared my property sufficiently. Fortunately, I didn't have any damage, but other people in the city did (I took these pictures on the way to work). I've learned my lesson - similar to the Wu Tang Clan, derechos ain't nothin' to mess with.
The warnings and storm reports issued during that period (as well as the precip amounts) show a long-tracking, damaging system (although yes, some of the reports and warnings, mostly tornado items, occurred in supercell thunderstorms ahead of the main line). Even ignoring that the definition allows for "a period of winds below severe criteria," and assuming that the Pennsylvania gusts were not a result of the same system, it left a 230-mile line of damage from Peotone, Ill., to Fostoria, Ohio. The requirement is 240 miles, so yes, technically it didn't qualify - but that's a narrow margin of error if a late storm report comes in. Because it came so close, I definitely think that it was worth mentioning as a possibility in the forecast (this is my opinion -- other meteorologists here may disagree).
This is a very detailed neat satellite shot from 3 AM -- the overshooting tops in Central Pennsylvania gave us a very frequent, intense lightning show around 4 AM.
The Atlantic hurricane season of 1996 was a blockbuster season for southeast North Carolina. Could that repeat this season?
Scientifics Direct (formerly Edmund Scientific) has a sea of scientific devices and gadgets in their store, that I could only dream of as a kid!
The worst flooding this week was in Louisiana, but the unnamed low-pressure system dropped 10 inches of rain in eight states.
Here in Pennsylvania, after experiencing months with almost no rainfall and a complete lack of typical thunderstorm activity, the last 10 days have brought daily rainfall and storms.
What may go down in the record books as "The Great Flood of 2016" is now upon us. Over 30 inches of rain has fallen and thousands have been rescued from the floods.
I'm pleased to announce that the 4K version of the 360fly camera has arrived! Unboxing, in-car review, and time-lapse sample videos in this blog.