Vortices of air constantly surround us, invisible to the naked eye until something physical gives them shape. While tornadoes are the most well-known, destructive form, some aspects of tornado formation still pose a mystery for meteorologists studying the dynamics of a thunderstorm.
Unlike tornadoes, vortices animated by snow, leaves and even insects are often the result of wind which is deflected by natural geology or solid objects, which cause the air flows to whirl, AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Jesse Ferrell said. Other vortices made of fire, dust and steam are often the result of thermal uplift caused by variations between the surface temperature and the temperature of the atmosphere.
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These variations in temperature or fluctuations in air pressure trying to reach an equilibrium can give rise to enormous vertical, columnlike structures depending on varying weather conditions, Ferrell added.
Tropical Storm Hermine will turn toward Florida with heavy rain, gusty winds and the risk of flooding late this week.
Another strong tropical disturbance has moved off the coast of Africa and bears watching for strengthening and impact on the Caribbean and the United States during September.
A swarm of tropical systems cruising the Atlantic Ocean will raise surf and risks to beachgoers along the East coast of the United States into Labor Day weekend.
Two tropical systems, Madeline and Lester, could pose hazards to Hawaii into Labor Day weekend.
Though the summer season is winding down, forecasters are predicting a warm start to fall across the Northeast — a weather pattern that could spell bad news for fall foliage lovers.
While warmth will dominate much of Asia this autumn, drought relief is on the way for southeastern areas, but tropical cyclones could threaten lives and property surrounding the Bay of Bengal.
Boise, ID (1984)
One-day-old Cadillac is crushed by a dumpster thrown by thunderstorm winds.
Houston, TX (1990)
A total of 0.31 inches of rain today. This was the first measurable rain in Houston since July 30th with 0.16 inches. This is the longest dry spell ever in Houston in August.
Philadelphia, PA (1991)
Mercury reached 90 degrees or better for the 49th day this year, as the high was 92. This tied the all-time record for the most 90 plus days in a year, set in 1988. The record would be broken in September. The total for 1991 was 53 days.