Archive for damaging winds

StormScapeLIVE.com LIVE Streaming Operations for the Southeast Severe Weather Outbreak of 3/26/11

Posted in Extreme Weather Video, Severe weather, weather photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 26, 2011 by stormstream

http://StormScapeLIVE.com will be broadcasting the severe weather outbreak across Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia LIVE today starting at 10am EDT. Click on the Mike Phelps and Brett Adair tabs on the web page above the video player to join us as our virtual storm chase partners! As always, we will have a high-quality video stream, as well as full audio at all times and an interactive chat room where you can communicate with us.

You can also now watch Mike Phelps’ live stream from your smart phone! Just go to the following page on your internet-enabled mobile device: http://www.dyyno.com/channel/stormscapelive#sid=9D04D8BE183AEC59

MEDIA: Click on the media tab on the web page to contact us for licensing a clean, logo and ad-free stream for use on air, and for live phoners from the field. Or, go to http://www.chasertv.com and click on the media page from there. We will provide you with a MAK code to access the clean stream.

FORECAST: A warm front stretches along the I-20 corridor through MS, AL and GA on this Saturday morning. Rain and a few elevated strong to severe storms are located along and north of that warm front. This convection will reinforce the warm front and basically hold it in its current position through much of the day, if anything lifting only very slowly northward this afternoon. Instability and shear will increase greatly along and about 100 miles south of the warm front this afternoon and evening, and that will provide a ripe environment for scattered surface-based supercells producing large hail, damaging winds and a few tornadoes. The StormScapeLIVE.com chase team will be intercepting these storms today beginning after 10am EDT. The best action should be between 3pm and 10pm EDT. We’ll have two chase vehicles covering the storms, with Mike Phelps in one, and Brett Adair and Eric Parker in the other.

This is a dangerous weather day across parts of the Southeast, so stay weather aware!

Mike Phelps
Owner – StormScapeLIVE.com

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A Busy and Potentially Dangerous Severe Weather Day Across Dixie

Posted in Severe weather with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 2, 2009 by stormstream

A strong storm system will bring areas of severe thunderstorms to the Southeast U.S. today.

Severe storms with the potential of damaging winds and isolated tornadoes will affect the Gulf coastal and inland areas of south AL, south GA and north FL throughout the morning and into the afternoon. 

Other severe storms associated with low pressure and the cold front will sweep from eastern TX across LA, southern and eastern AR, western sections of middle TN and into western MS through the morning and into the afternoon.  These particular storms could produce hail to the size of baseballs, damaging winds and some tornadoes.  These storms will continue to move rapidly northeast at 50 to 60 mph across MS, middle TN and across AL and the FL panhandle late this afternoon and evening, continuing to pose a threat of damaging winds, hail to the size of golfballs and isolated tornadoes.  Storms will impact GA, north FL and into SC and eastern NC through the early morning hours on Friday.  These storms will mainly be strong to marginally severe, but central and south GA and into the Carolinas could experience more concentrated severe storms with damaging winds, hail to the size of marbles and isolated tornadoes.

The extensive convection occuring along the Gulf coastal region of AL and the FL panhandle will disrupt the low level wind field, and could reduce the amount of low level speed shear, a key ingredient to large tornadoes in the Southeast.  This could spare most of AL, GA and middle TN from any storng or violent tornadoes, with most intensity levels between EF0 and EF1.  Further west during the afternoon, the low level inflow should be stronger thus creating more intense low level spin in the atmosphere, the CAPE higher, and the upper dynamics stronger.  If we are to see any long-tracked tornadoes of EF2 intensity and higher today it would most likely be across MS, the western third of AL, and possibly western sections of middle TN if dewpoints can rise above 62F there.  The most likely time for this activity would be between 2pm and 9pm.

I am fairly confident that this event will produce severe weather that may reach the definition of an outbreak.  I’m more confident in an outbreak of severe thunderstorms than I am of a tornado outbreak.  The low level moosture is there, but I am not sure we are going to see the magnitude of 0-1km speed sheer necessary to get a lot of tornadoes going, and especially ones of strong or violent intensity.  There will likely be more storms displaying mid level rotation, than those that actually drop confirmed tornadoes, so we could see a situation where many radar-indicated tornado warnings are issued, but verification of actual tornadoes may be far less.  Still, having said that, the potential is certainly there for significant tornadoes, especially across MS, western AL and western sections of middle TN, with a threat for isolated and weaker tornadoes in many other areas.  So stay up to date on all forecasts, and pay attention to all watches and warnings that are issued today, and take them very seriously.

Major Outbreak of Severe Thunderstorms and Tornadoes Looking More Likely Across Mississippi and Alabama on Thursday and Thursday Night

Posted in Severe weather with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 1, 2009 by stormstream

The atmospheric set-up for Thursday into early Friday morning will be very supportive of numerous severe thunderstorms, and potentially strong to violent tornadoes across parts of the Southeast U.S., centered on Mississippi and Alabama.  This is a very dangerous, potentially life and property-threatening situation, and those within and near the greatest risk area should review their severe weather action plans and be ready to take measures to protect life and property Thursday and Thursday night.

The area of greatest risk will exist across eastern AR, northern LA, western and middle TN, all of MS and AL, and west-central and southwest GA.  The threat will extend across western sections of this region Thursday morning, then moves eastward through the day and extend from middle TN to eastern AL and west-central and southwest GA by Thursday night into early Friday morning.  Anyone living in this region needs to be prepared.  I can’t stress that enough.

Any severe thunderstorm that develops in the above mentioned region on Thursday has the very real potential of producing damaging winds in excess of 60mph and damaging hail.  In fact, storms will have the potential to produce hail to the size of baseballs.  Many storms will become supercells and be capable of producing large, damaging and long-tracked tornadoes and tornado families in cyclic supercells.  The set-up is one that is much more commonly seen in the traditional Tornado Alley of the Plains, and more rarely across the Southeast.  This system has the potential to be one of the largest severe weather and tornado outbreaks of the season, not only for the Southeast, but for the entire U.S.  I would say that most of Mississippi and western, central and south-central Alabama are ground zero for the most intense and life and property-threatening weather, although the entire region outlined above is under a significant threat.

Still, there are factors that could limit the severity, as well as the overall coverage of the event.  Those factors being the potential of Gulf coastal convection limiting the inflow of deep, quality surface moisture and instability into the system.  The tremendous dynamics could lead to more of a squall line event, which would limit tornado potential, however, it would increase the chance of widespread damaging winds.  Timing is still not certain, and if the main dynamics move across the region during the relatively cooler, more stable overnight hours, then that could lessen the intensity of the event as well.  Overall, however, there are far more factors that lead one to believe there will be a major outbreak of severe weather, as opposed to a lesser event.

Please stay up to date on the weather, and please be prepared.

Severe Storms in Central Georgia Today, and Heavy Snow Possible Sunday. I’ll be Storm Chasing Today and Sunday.

Posted in Extreme Weather Video, Severe weather, Winter weather with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 28, 2009 by stormstream

STORM CHASE STATUS: ACTIVE

TARGET: Central and southwest Georgia and southeast Alabama.  Macon, GA to Columbus GA to Troy, AL to Panama City, FL to Valdosta, GA to Macon, GA.

TIME: Depart Atlanta at 11:30am EST.  Arrive in target by 1pm.  Actively storm chasing until approx. 9pm.

LIVE INTERNET BROADCAST: 11:30am – 3pm at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/mike-phelps-mobile-weather-stream (live video and audio) 3pm-9pm EST at http://www.severestudios.com/livechase.  Chasing as Mike Phelps.  Live video only.

AVAILABLE FOR LIVE PHONE INTERVIEWS: 2pm – 9pm EST via mobile phone at 404-202-6317.  Leave message on voice mail and I’ll call right back.

DISCUSSION: A warm front stretches west to east across central Georgia this morning.  This front should remain in this general area through the afternoon and will provide a corridor of increased low level helicity that could be a breeding ground for a few tornadoes.  I don’t think we will want to stray too far south of that warm front today.  Dewpoints in the mid 60s have moved into south-central Alabama this morning, and will continue to spread across southeast AL and into portions of southwest GA and the western FL panhandle this afternoon.  All models indicate a broken line of supercells developing along and ahead of an advancing cold front from central GA into south-central AL after about 3pm today.  These storms will have the potential to produce large hail and damaging winds, and in that corridor of higher helicity near the warm front there will be a threat for isolated tornadoes.  There is a CAPE and EHI max that has been showing up now on a few runs of the NAM so I believe what we will do is head southwest from ATL on I-85 and establish a base of storm chase operations in Columbus for a while and then adjust locations from there.

WINTER STORM DISCUSSION: Forecast models remain consistent in showing an upper level low snow event across parts of the Southeast starting later today in the Mid-South and spreading south and eastward across Dixie tonight through Sunday.  This is a very dynamic system with good moisture associated with it, and the potential certainly exists for some heavy snow.  The last couple of runs of the NAM have taken the upper low on more of a southerly route over what it was showing this time yesterday, although the 06z NAM shifted north again.  If this track comes to fruition then a swath of significant snow (3+ inches)  will extend from Memphis, TN to Birmingham, AL Atlanta, GA to Greenville, SC and northeast from there.  It is very difficult to pin down the exact location of the heavy snow in these upper level low snow events this time of year, so who is to say that the area I outlined above will ultimately verify, but we are gaining more and more of a consensus among the models that this track of significant snow is becoming more likely.  In my opinion, there is still the potential for this system to produce some “jackpot snows” on the order of 5 to 10 inches, but it remains impossible to pin down the location for that.  I want to strongly caution that certainly nothing is set in stone with this system as of yet.  There is still a rather sizeable potential that it will end up being far less of a big deal than a lot are anticipating.  Keep in mind that snow outside of the state of North Carolina and the mountains of Tennessee, has been basically non-existent this winter.  La Nina winters simply do not breed big snows outside of those areas.  Also, the forecast models have been less than stellar in their performance this winter.  Honestly, we are not going to feel real confident about any snow forecast with this thing until it is actually happening.  So, watch the system closely, but don’t be quick to jump onto any snow or non-snow bandwagons until the wagon is actually passing through your area.

If this system produces significant snow near Atlanta, GA on Sunday then I will be broadcasting it live on the internet.  I’ll have details about this live broadcast in my Sunday morning blog.

Severe Thunderstorms, then Snow this Weekend for the Southeast!

Posted in Severe weather, Winter weather with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 26, 2009 by stormstream

A wild weather weekend is in store for the Southeast from Friday through Sunday.

On Friday, the stage is set for a severe weather episode across central Mississippi into central Alabama.  Hail and damagaing winds look to be the biggest threats, but there will also be the threat for some tornadoes as well.  If dewpoints reach the 63-67 degree F. range, then even a strong tornado or two will be possible along and just north of I-20 in MS and AL on Friday afternoon and evening.  By early evening the threat for strong to severe storms will extend into parts of western and northern Georgia.

On Saturday, the main threat for severe storms will extend from central and south Georgia into the upstate of South Carolina and central and eastern North Carolina.  Instability will decrease, while upper level dynamics increase.  Overall, the threat on Saturday does not look as great as that on Friday, but nonethelesss, damaging severe thunderstorms will be possible, especially across central GA, and an isolated tornado or two cannot be ruled out.  I may be streaming severe weather video at http://www.severestudios.com/livechase.  If I do, I’ll be sure and let everyone know.

Saturday night through Sunday and even into Monday morning is looking VERY interesting in terms of significant snowfall.  Yes, it does snow in March in the Southeast, in fact, some of our biggest snowfalls happen in March.  this will be a fairly long duration upper level low snow event IF it pans out.  These are notoriously hard to forecast and pin down the areas of greatest snowfall accumulation until the event is actually unfolding.  These events are also notorious for “jackpot snows”, where someone in a small area or narrow swath gets absolutely crushed by heavy snow.  We had one of these early in the season across southern Louisiana into southern and central Mississippi.  I won’t get specific yet, I’ll just say that significant amounts of wet, gloppy snow will be possible across northern and central MS, AL and GA, southern TN, much of SC and central and eastern NC.  Could this threat fizzle like so many have this winter?  It sure could, so it will be important to keep an eye on the forecast and not get too carried away just yet with this threat in any direction.  We’ll know much more about the potential snow threat and more specific details by Friday night and Saturday morning.

Tornadoes Possible in Dixie Today. Snow Likely on Saturday. Get Ready for a Wild Few Days!

Posted in Severe weather, Winter weather with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 18, 2009 by stormstream

It is going to be a classic wild weather ride across the Southeast United States over the next several days.

A storm system today and tonight will bring the potential of severe thunderstorms across a good portion of LA, MS, AL, GA and north FL.  The threats with these storms will be large hail, damaging winds, and tornadoes.  In fact, the tornado threat is looking rather significant for the southern half of MS, and the southrn 2/3rds of AL.  Also, if mid 60 degree dewpoints make it into GA this afternoon, then a significant tornado threat would also exist for areas in GA along and south of interstate 20, and this would include the Atlanta metro area.

Overall, the potential violence of this event will very much be dictated by the degree and depth of moisture across the Southeast.  As of late morning, many dewpoints in the threatened areas of AL and GA are only in the low to mid 50s.  Dewpoints will need to rise into the 63 to 67 degree F. range to provide the sufficient low level moisture to fuel robust and deep convection necessary to produce tornadoes.  This will be a situation where the true potential of this event may not be fully realized until mid to late afternoon today.  There are still several factors that could significantly limit the overall threat and only time will tell whether those factors will go away or remain.  So, it will be very important for those across the Southeast to stay up to date on the latest weather information as the day progresses.

Now for the winter weather threat fro Saturday into Sunday morning…

This threat has been on the models for several days, and is trending stornger with each model run.  I am very hesitant to take the bait on any model threat beyond two or three days given the poor performance of the forecast models in this range this season.  I will say that I am cautiously opitimistic that a swath of light snow will progress from northwest to southeast across areas mainly along and north of I-20/I-85 Saturday into Sunday morning.  Accumulations could range from nothing to a dusting, to several inches.  It is just too early right now to say much more than state that this is a potential winter weather threat.

Tornadoes Possible in Oklahoma and Texas Late This Afternoon and Evening

Posted in Extreme Weather Video, Severe weather with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 10, 2009 by stormstream

The first widespread severe weather event of the 2009 U.S. severe weather season is unfolding, and it looks to be a dangerous situation for some.

Scattered supercell thunderstorms with possible tornadoes will erupt late this afternoon and evening across central and eastern Oklahoma into north Texas. These storms will move quickly east and northeast and eventually form into a squall line of severe storms that produces a lot of damaging wind across Missouri, Arkansas and parts of Louisiana into early Wednesday morning.

On Wednesday and Wednesday night, the conditions are becoming more favorable for severe storms across the Southeast that could not only produce damaging wind, but also some tornadoes. The line of storms that rolls into the region from the west will weaken, but then re-form and re-intensify Wedednesday afternoon and evening. These storms will not only be line segments, but also more discrete supercells with a threat for tornadoes and damaging winds.

Everyone from the eastern Plains eastward across the MO, MS, TN and OH Valley and Southeast, should pay especially close attention to the weather forecast today through Wednesday night, and be ready to take appropriate action should severe weather threaten.