No significant threats.
Like yesterday, we should see scattered showers and t-storms around again today. Nothing looks too heavy, but a storm or two could become strong. Watch out for heavy downpours of rain, gusty winds, and lightning.
Saturday looks like more of the same, with more scattered showers and t-storms. Again, severe weather doesn’t look likely, though a storm or two could be on the strong side.
Finally, Sunday and Monday look good. We may squeeze out an isolated shower or storm on Sunday, but Monday looks dry. Most of Tuesday will likely be dry too, with our next better shot of rain coming Wednesday and Thursday.
Today, 80% of tornadoes occur within tornado warnings. The 20% that fall outside of warnings are often the very weak, short-lived tornadoes that can occur too suddenly for a warning to be issued.
A 100-year old two-story home was struck by lightning and burned to the ground on this day in 2000 in Lewisburg. The town of Lewisburg is in southern Middle TN, near Shelbyville. That same home survived a direct hit from a tornado in 1913.
On this day in 1999 an event unfolded in central Oklahoma that many of us still talk about today. We refer to this simply as “May 3rd”. A violent, long-track F-5 tornado barreled into southern Oklahoma City, into the suburb of Moore. An hours-long parade of violent supercells held Oklahoma and southern Kansas hostage throughout the late afternoon and evening. Hundreds were injured and 44 lives were lost.
This was back when F-5s were extremely rare. In fact, it had been 10 years since the U.S. had been hit by such a storm when this one struck in 1999.
This tornado outbreak was unusual in that the models didn’t pick up on the set of circumstances that would lead to this outbreak. Severe storms were in the forecast, but storm chasers were advised to stay home, as there wouldn’t’ be much to see. Even today’s models don’t forecast this outbreak well at all.
A very unique aspect to the Moore tornado is that the twister was being chased by news helicopters and they could see how it scoured the ground. News media reported that those in the path of this tornado wouldn’t survive, even in a basement. This prompted folks to get in their cars and leave Moore. This is a very dangerous practice but it saved lives on this day. Folks had a straight shot out of town via I-35. Many other fortuitous factors came together to make an exodus possible. Since then, they have had traffic disasters when attempting to do this again.
Some folks went north to Del City, only to find themselves in the path of the twister as it changed course. Getting in the car and leaving is most often a very horrible idea and most tornadoes are easily survivable by taking shelter at home. Many other folks took shelter under overpasses. That’s where most of the fatalities took place. Never take shelter at an overpass. The winds get funneled through the overpass and you can get sucked out and into the tornado quiet easily.
I was in Moore two weeks to the day this tornado hit and the destruction was just unbelievable. Many people have seen the damage of a strong tornado, but until you see what an F-4 or F-5 does you just haven’t seen anything yet.
No almanac available today.
Today’s sunset: 7:29
Tomorrow sunrise: 5:43
Today’s day length: 13 hrs 44 mins 36 secs
Tomorrow’s day length: 13 hrs 46 mins 29 secs
One year ago today
We had a high of 82 and a low of 57. No rain fell and winds were from the west.
Sky viewing conditions tonight: POOR
Moon rise: 5:53 a.m. Saturday
Moon set: 6:19 p.m.
Moon phase: Waning Crescent, 2% illumination
What to look for in the night sky tonight
Too many clouds to see anything good.
I’m on the road today traveling to Frederick, Maryland for a running festival they have there this weekend. I’ll be running the half marathon on Sunday. Wish me luck! I’m most excited about seeing some of my friends at Longwood University, where I taught for a year. That is located in Farmville, Virginia. I will be stopping by there this evening to have dinner with them. Wish me safe travels!
My goal to run a half marathon in every state is getting closer to being real! After this weekend I will have Michigan, Tennessee, Mississippi, Virginia, North Carolina, and Maryland. Georgia (Savannah) and Kentucky (Bowling Green) are on my list for this fall!
Goals, right? ha
You all have a great day!