Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Record-setting severe season takes aim on Lafayette



Well, let me cut to the chase! We will have to watch things together very carefully over the next week with 4 of the next 7 days bringing us a chance of severe thunderstorms. We will also have the hottest weather in about 8 months with 90 degree weather looking more likely on Thursday. But what happens when you combine July heat with an early Spring jet stream and one of the strongest June storm systems on record? It means trouble...lots of trouble and could bring the biggest severe weather outbreak of the season to the United States, in a season that has already been on a record pace for severe weather and tornadoes. The tornado count is now up over 950. The record pace up to this point is only about 780. This is incredible. You can blame this record pace on one of the strongest La Nina's on record. Even though the La Nina has weakened it has left its imprint on the pattern all around the globe and things will not really iron back out until late summer or early autumn.

Up to this point the Lafayette area has dodged the worst of the severe weather because of a suppressed jet stream. But now that we are in June, there is no holding back this jet stream any longer. The longer daylight hours have allowed plenty of hot weather to build up in the Deep South and this is overwhelming the chilly air we saw win the weather battle in May. This hot air forms a "ring of fire" weather pattern you see above. In this pattern, thunderstorms like to ride up and around these hot domes of high pressure. Texas had plenty of 100 degree heat today. Now on the northern edge of the heat wave you have cooler air that can mix in helping to create plenty of thunderstorms, giving nature the meteorological equivalent of ring around the collar, which in this case forms a huge ring of thunderstorms on the satellite and radar pictures. Nature can take us to the cleaners in a hurry with this set-up. The jet stream is now forced farther north and these higher upper-level winds can create havoc with our thunderstorms this time of year. We saw what those menacing high upper-level winds can do to our weather last Friday with 3 tornadoes in one day. Unfortunately it was just a tune-up and we may be locked into this pattern for at least the next 10 days. I am concerned about damaging wind, large hail, and even isolated tornadoes on Friday. We also cannot rule out flooding. You can see why below.


The Wabash River crested at 13.9 feet on Sunday and today it will be back below flood stage. But since it is nearly at bank full it will not take much for more flooding. I am also concerned about the rivers and streams farther north like Carpenters Creek in Remington. Mary Anne had 3 inches of rain in a short time on Friday and she could double that easily in the next week. Remember flooding kills many more people than tornadoes in the United States each year. I am not liking the bad feeling I am getting in my gut at this time about this pattern. I hope I am wrong. Now speaking of heavy rain, here is a great picture sent in by Goldie Ford from Burlington, Indiana. She witnessed a gully-washer on Monday evening. You are looking at one impressive rain shaft. Get used to more scenes like these below.


This is also a reminder that meteorological summer began on June 1st or Sunday. It also marks the true start of the peak of our thunderstorm season from now through August. Almost every day this week we will have a chance of a thunderstorm. I will from time to time give percentages just so you know that I cannot promise rain to everybody this time of year when thunderstorms are in the forecast. You have to realize our weather is driven by heat and humidity this time of year rather than fronts and as a result you sometimes get these popcorn thunderstorms that sometimes are only a couple miles wide in diameter. So literally your neighbor this time of year could see rain while on the other side of the road you could stay dry!

Ahhhhh, it is certainly meteorological summer! The reason why your calendar says the first day of summer is not until June 20th is because most calendars are based on astronomy and not weather. Here in Lafayette we are now going through not only the peak of our thunderstorm season, but our 90 hottest days on average so the meteorological calendar really does work out much better. Meteorological summer is officially now through August 31st. Remember the sunscreen and to check in with your one and only local weather team from where you live! I will check back with you here on the blog with the latest on the timing of any strong thunderstorms that may move our way today. The best chance for any severe weather watches or warnings still looks like this afternoon as a warm front lifts northward. I will talk to you soon. Be safe out there!

Welcome aboard Brenneco plumbing! It is great to have you as our weather blog sponsor. As you will find out.....Lafayette has the best weather bloggers in the country!! By having your support we it will allow us to continue to expand and make this site even better! Thanks again! Now I will have to come up with a nice precast later today! Should I do a John Madden chalk talk? :)

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

I just hope that everyone stays safe todat and next friday and you can bet that I'll be hopeing for the best!!! I really dont want to see a repeat of last friday and Im sure that you dont want to see a repeat as well. So I hope there are no tornado's!!! that's for sure thank you for all your updates mike and I'll be right here today and friday to try and do my part to help keep you with all the info I can give you.
Thanks again and stay safe...

Justin in Lafayette.

Anonymous said...

This blogger shudders at the thought of doubling that 3 inches rain of Friday last! The creek is still 3/4 way up and of course the ground is saturated. We had the county surveyor here yesterday in the neighborhood for a "discussion". The neighborhood is frightened at any mention of flooding.

Stay safe and watchful everyone!

Mary Anne in Remington (where you could wring out the air it is so humid.)

Anonymous said...

Still cant get my weather radio to program, cant find the correct number for NOAA! there is nothing wrong with the radio just the programmer!This radio has crank up battery, flashlights,cell phone adaptors small tv, am/fm radio and weather radio+alarms! I can get weather for other areas, like out of state just not local, will keep working on it for I feel like I might need it over the next few days. Justin you do a great job letting us know when yours goes off, I will keep checking the blog.

And Mike thanks for all your kind words to the bloggers, It it werent for you we wouldnt have this great sight! There really are a lot of great people on this blog.

Anonymous said...

Mary Anne take care, My heart goes out to all that are still trying to re-build from the winter floods.

I do not live in an area that is at high risk for flooding, other than my basement, and thats nothing compaired to folks that have lost everything, including their pets!

I help out with no kill shelters and the Exotic Animal Sanctuary, where pet birds, rabbits, dogs and cats, animals of all kinds had to surrended by owner due to the fact their owners had to relocate and were not able to take their pets with them, Hope this will not be a replay of that event. However, we did a great job finding wonderful loving homes for those animals. Folks should take comfort in that!

All be safe!

Teri

Anonymous said...

Will do!

Justin in Lafayette.

Anonymous said...

Ok I dont know if you have already done this but to get your county codes you need to go to this web site type up www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr/indexnw.htm. and here is what to expect when you pull up that web site the link above will take you directly to the list of states. click on your state. Find your county and record you S.A.M.E. # ( the S.A.M.E. county code ) that is to the right of your county and for any other countys you are interested. Then you just got to program it to your weather radio. Sorry I cant help you do that but my weather radio is not the same as your's.

Justin in Lafayette.

Brow said...

Although we don't need the floods, hail and high winds...I was happy to hear Mike say that the threat should not be as bad as last Friday.

We still have this coming Friday's weather to worry about though.

I say we call 'ol Mrs. La Nina and tell her to lay off now. :)

Anonymous said...

Just leave a local radio station on (on a regular radio) and they will interrupt with emergency broadcasts as needed if you can't get your weather radio to work. What is the best local station for weather updates?

Anonymous said...

Thank you Justin, I think I might have my weather radio working, I can now get the local weather, Just need to get it set so the alarm will go off. If I get this baby working we will be able to share info, You have been a pleasure!

Anonymous said...

Well I hope it works really the alarm should already be on and ready to sound the only thing you should have to do is set it to eaither sound or voice alart :)

Justin in Lafayette.

Anonymous said...

Hey everyone, be careful today! I am already seeing some meteorologists who expect the SPC to updgrade to a HIGH risk for severe storms later today...with the potential of a PDS tornado watch (Particularly Dangerous Situation) being issued for Illinois and Indiana.

Romney Scaredy Cat said...

Mike,
Is your wife going shopping ??? HAHAHA Could you ask her to stay home ? I do agree that La Nina needs to be told to take a vacation or better yet a VERY long nap ! My Holy Candle is lit and I am saying my prayers that we all stay safe ! God Bless to all !!

Anonymous said...

Im watching this system and right now it looks like the worst is staying to the south like indianapolis but as we all know this is indiana and it can change is a sec. Also it looks like it did weeken just a slight little bit.

Justin in Lafayette.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Justin, I think its ready to go?????? Did yours go off for tornado watch south of us???? Mine did not!

Anonymous said...

The stuff coming through right now is not the major issue. It's later in the evening...the more the system that's moving from Illinois to Indiana midday weakens, the worse the weather will be later this afternoon/evening. That'll be the biggest tornado risk.

Anonymous said...

No mine did not go off the tornado watch was south of me.
and your welcome anytime.

Justin in Lafayette.

Brow said...

Last Friday we had it tuned into Shy 99...not sure what the exact station numbers are though.

The only reason for this was because my neighbor's satellite wasn't working and he wasn't comfortable plugging his PC back in.

I feel like the radio station did a decent job with updates, etc...but I was really itching to watch WFLI! :)

Anonymous said...

Also your weather radio should give you Anber alart as well.
I dont think this storm comeing from ILL, is going to be to bad it's later were we all need to be careful and watch. By my map's it show's the worst and strongest here by 4:00pm and go's through out midnight.

Justin in Lafayette.

Anonymous said...

My favorite site (besides WLFI of course), is www.weatherbug.com. The maps are easier to see vs. the NOAA website, the colors are very clear. I flip between WLFI for info and that site.

Renee said...

I hear thunder. I do not like the 10 day outlook with the storms.
I need my hubby hehe.I hope this year goes fast!

Anonymous said...

here in Lafayette by the fairground's I have 0.50 inches of rain.

Justin in Lafayette.

Anonymous said...

We got some sun out here hope it dont last long!!!

Justin in Lafayette.