Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Update On New Round Of Severe Storms, Record Warmth

Areas in yellow and orange are most at risk for severe
thunderstorms and tornadoes today and tonight.
A few strong tornadoes are possible. 
It looks like it's going to be a dangerous afternoon and evening across the middle of the United States.

Another burst of warm air has engulfed the eastern half of the nation, and a storm in the middle of the country is about to spawn another round of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes.

This outbreak looks like it will be more widespread than the one that hit last weekend, and it could also be worse, with more and stronger tornadoes than the ones that struck Saturday in the Northeast.

It all depends upon how the atmospherics come together.

At this point, the areas that seem to be at greatest risk of severe storms and tornadoes is northern Arkansas, the eastern half of Missouri and most of Illinois and Indiana.

It's possible some of the tornadoes will become quite strong - EF3 or higher- and those are the ones that cause the most damage, and created the highest risk of casualties.

It looks like each individual storm that forms today and tonight will move along quite quickly, so if any of these contains a tornado, there won't be a lot of time for people in the path of the storms to take shelter.

Also, this is hitting on a weekday, when more people are out and about going to work, school and errands. Generally speaking, more people are at home on weekends like during Saturday's rough weather, so there's a better chance they will be in a place where they'd hear a weather radio or a TV station will sqawk out a warning.

Areas in yellow and orange are most at risk for severe
thunderstorms Wednesday. A few tornadoes are possible
in the yellow and orange zones. 
On Wednesday, the severe weather moves east, probably covering a large area from Alabama and Mississippi to near New York City.  

Strong straight line winds and big hail are the biggest threat tomorrow, but I would not at all be surprised to hear of a few tornadoes in this zone during the day Wednesday.

As the storm rides on by, more record heat is expected in the East, from Florida all the way to northern New England.


Here in Vermont, record highs are endangered again tomorrow. It won't get up to 72 degrees like it did Saturday, but Wednesday's record high of 59 degrees in Burlington is definitely under threat.

There will be a fairly decent slug of rain coming through Wednesday and Wednesday evening, possibly accompanied by some rumbles of thunder again.

I would not be at all surprised if we get more low land flooding out of this, just as we did Saturday and Sunday.

The good news is most of the ice has been flushed out of the rivers, so the risk of ice jams is lower. And there's not as much snow to melt and add to the rivers as there was over the weekend.

It'll turn sharply colder Thursday night and it's back to winter Friday and Saturday with temperatures actually a little below normal.

After that, I don't see any real signs of any more record heat for the forseeable future.

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