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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Virgina Tornadoes! Frost Tonight?

Yesterday's storm gave us about 1 inch of rain locally, but that was nothing compared to the severe weather in south east Virginia. Here you can see the peak of the storms as captured around 4pm. If you see the map I posted in yesterday's blog- it was a strong cold front that sparked the storms.
Here is an example of wind sheer similar to what caused yesterday's tornadoes... Winds at the surface were from the south east, while the storm was moving cloud level winds from the south west to north west. A different direction and speed with height. That caused the wind to sheer or rotate with height. For the record, a Tornado Watch was posted for this region by The National Weather Service. A 75 mile path of at least 3 separate tornadoes straddled North Carolina and Virgina. Ironically this was the 6 year anniversary of the La Plata tornado. Today is the day that the NWS will survey the damage and confirm the strength. Early Doppler estimates of perhaps an EF 3- which would mean winds of 138mph-167mph.
For a comparison of the original Fujita Scale and the new Enhanced Fujita Scale- click here.

What I find most interesting, was that this morning, the cold upper level low was passing through Ohio, and brought snow to the mountains of West Virginia - see here at 6am. Due to this upper level Low, I am not sure we will clear out and get back to 60F today. I think clouds will likely hang on longer, and many of us will stay in the upper 50s. When we do clear out tonight, frost is likely just inland with temperatures back into the mid 30s... The sun will be back tomorrow.

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