Week in review

First want to appologise for my lack of attention to this blog for a whole month now! Something went screwy with my computer USB ports and would not accept data from the weather station. Not only that hiccup but things got real busy with my graduation and all that fun jazz. Should be back in the swing of things now.

First thing I want to go over is the outcome of three confirmed tornadoes just south of our area a week ago. A in-depth NOAA report can be found here. There were plenty of Tornado Warnings posted that night for the storms that tracked west to east across lower Michigan. I stayed up until about 2:30am waiting for the final line to pass. I had the police scanner and NOAA weather radio on while frantically updating the Detroit/Pontiac radar page. Most of the warnings were triggered by doppler radar, but some were confirmed in the appropriate counties. I got some interesting radar screenshots that night.

DTX Radar

Doppler radar indicated Tornadoes and Tornado Warnings, headed West to East

I know it may be hard to spot where we are, but just take a look around and feel it out. The full radar view is mainly just Michigan and the northern parts of Indiana and Ohio, to get you started.

DTX Radar

Velocity image of storms

Velocity radar is used to see through a storm and see which ways the wind is going. While the radar cannot see exact wind directions, it knows if it is going towards the radar or away. Green means towards the radar and red is away. In distinct pockets of color where red and green are near each other, it may mean the storm is rotating and could be forming a tornado. While none of these screenshots actually captured a tornado, you can see why the radar was thinking there was one. This was further amplified if the image sequence was played in a loop.

Interesting signature on a velocity image

When this red shape south of Ann Arbor appeared I thought for sure it was a tornado, the loop even showed the storm rotating. It must have just been  a very strong wall cloud or general rotation, but it certainly looked like one on radar.

Scooting forward a week, we look at more rain. for spring and early summer it has been very wet. Areas are saturated and flood or fill with water easy. Although it may only look like a few inches of water, you are not sure what is on the bottom. Use caution when dealing with large amounts of water. This weekend looks like we have at least a chance of thunderstorms. When they are as scattered as they are going to be, it is hard to say what areas will survive dry and unaffected. However the greater amount of rain looks to stay south of our area, which is good for all the graduation parties this weekend. I think the most we will see is a short lived shower/thunderstorm or two. No drenching, long term rains or serious business electricity. In other words nothing that will cancel a party that has been in the works for months. Be warned that a thunderstorm is a thunderstorm and it is still dangerous to be outside even if the sky is blue but thunder is heard.

Sunday looks like a different story with a higher chance of rain to close out the weekend. Temps should skyrocket to the upper 80s this weekend before cooling into the 70s early next week.

Once again sorry for the recent letdown, but glad to be back!


About gweatherc
Live in Michigan and enjoy observing the weather. Want to pursue it as a career! Currently taking classes at Central Michigan University.

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