**UPDATED** WEDNESDAY NIGHT SEVERE THREAT

6/22/16

Dangerously high winds will be possible tonight here in West Central Ohio along with heavy rain that could lead to flooding and perhaps an isolated tornado or two. This is easily the highest threat for severe weather we have had in 2016 so it would be a good idea to secure any outdoor items and have a safety plan in place as storms move in between about 10 PM and 2 AM Thursday morning.

Let’s get down to the details:

How is this storm going to develop? An area of low pressure and warm front will be moving over Northern Illinois late this evening that will likely spark what is called a Mesoscale Convective System (MCS). As I mentioned in my previous blog post, an MCS is a large and organized area of thunderstorms that typically persists for several hours. They usually congeal or develop into a well-defined bow echo that can bring widespread wind damage to a region. Sometimes MCS’s can be classified as a Derecho, but that doesn’t happen until AFTER the storm has ended based on how widespread and long-lived the wind damage is. Here is where I’m thinking the MCS will develop around 9 PM tonight.

Future 9 PM

The system will evolve and move through Northern Indiana heading towards the midnight hour.

Future 11 PM

And probably enter Western Ohio after midnight.

Future 2AM

Other forecast models confirm this arrival time, there has been high consensus among different models giving me pretty high confidence in an arrival time from 11:30PM to 12:30AM into West Central Ohio. Here is a look at another model, the HRRR around 1 AM.

HRRR 1 AM

What can we expect from this storm?

A lot. High wind, heavy rain, and even a few isolated tornadoes. The National Weather Service continues to keep the region under a “Moderate Risk” for severe weather. We don’t see this high of a risk very often, and because of that should be taken very seriously.

DAY 1 OUTLOOK

How bad will the storm be?

My biggest concern is high winds. Here is a look at the probability of winds over 58 miles per hour within 25 miles of any given point on the map. Notice the black hatched area, that means that within that area the possibility exists to see winds topping 75 miles per hour with storms, that’s hurricane force.

DAY 1 WIND

I’m worried about isolated tornadoes too, but to a lesser extent. Here is a similar probability map but for tornadoes. 5% isn’t very high, but there is definitely a chance that a few storms could spawn a short lived tornado or two.

DAY 1 TORNADO

And I can’t forget the rain. We could see lots of rain, especially south of Route 30. Here is a look at the possible rain totals in the region through Thursday morning.

Possible Rain

Again, the timeframe for these storms is in the 10PM to 2AM timeframe. Once the system develops later this evening I will begin to narrow that down. I’ll definitely keep you updated through the evening and stay up to the latest radar with our Weather App!

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-Kyle

 

 

 

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Wednesday Night Severe Weather Risk

6/21/16

Conditions are coming together for a widespread severe weather outbreak across the Great Lakes Region Wednesday evening into Wednesday night that could impact NW Ohio with widespread high wind. As of now here are the details of what I am expecting to develop but also remember that this will likely be adjusted a bit over the next 24 hours as new data comes in.

As of now, The National Weather Service has placed NW Ohio under a rare “Moderate Risk” for severe weather for Wednesday evening and Wednesday night.

DAY 2 OUTLOOK WIDE

A closer look at the region.

DAY 2 OUTLOOK

Notice that West Central Ohio is right on the edge of the higher risk area, that is because this anticipated Mesoscale Convective System, or, “MCS” will probably develop somewhere over Northern Illinois Wednesday evening and track SE toward Ohio into the overnight hours. An MCS is a large and organized area of thunderstorms that typically persists for several hours. They usually congeal or develop into a well-defined bow echo that can bring widespread wind damage to a region. Sometimes MCS’s can be classified as a Derecho, but that doesn’t happen until AFTER the storm has ended based on how widespread and long-lived the wind damage is. As of now, I don’t feel comfortable saying “possible Derecho” simply because we won’t know until after any damage is assessed.

Here is the set up for the system Wednesday evening. A strengthening area of low pressure will pull a warm front north up into Northern Illinois, Indiana, and NW Ohio late Wednesday evening. This will all develop in a very moist and unstable environment just to the south of the warm front. The area where the potential MCS will develop will likely lie right near the “Triple Point”, or in other words, in the region by the low, cold front, and warm front.

Future Late

It’s important to note here that today’s weather forecast models typically have a VERY hard time forecasting exactly where an MCS will develop. So honestly, it won’t be until the system develops Wednesday evening that we’ll have a much better idea of where it will track. So for now I’m going to assume that it will track along the warm front which will extend into Western Ohio.

Very high wind shear values will be present along the warm front that will allow for this system to maintain most of its strength into the overnight hours as it tracks towards Western Ohio. If there is any silver lining to all of this it is that this system is expected to move through in the 10 PM to 3 AM timeframe, a time not typically best for severe weather. However, I do believe that the wind shear present in the atmosphere will be enough to overcome any loss of daytime heating and help maintain strength.

So here is the bottom line.

High wind will over 60 mph will be very possible with any thunderstorms from about 10 PM to 3 AM Wednesday night. Isolated tornadoes can also spin up along an MCS, but aren’t typically very strong. MCS systems also have the tendency to bring very heavy rain, flooding with this system is definitely a concern as well with over 2 inches of rain possible Wednesday night. Make a plan now to cover or secure anything outdoors Wednesday night and have a plan in place for your family in case warnings are issued. Here is my overall threat outlook.

SEVERE HAZARD OUTLOOK NEW

I will definitely be watching this very closely and update as new data comes in!

-Kyle

 

 

Welcome To Mid-Summer! (Sort of…)

5/24/16

Yes I know, we’re still a month away from the official beginning of the summer season but the weather pattern we are going to experience the rest of this week is one more reminiscent of July/August. Basically what we’re dealing with is a VERY slowly moving frontal system that will impact the Plains with several days of possible severe weather. For us, a retreating high pressure system to the south and east will allow a much more humid air mass to build into Ohio.

Set Up

Over the next several days not only will temperatures continue to rise, but so will dew points. Dew point is a measure of moisture in the atmosphere, the higher the dew point, the more sticky it begins to feel outside. Starting Wednesday, dew points are going to rise and stay in the 60’s through the Memorial Day Weekend.

Future Dew Points

Couple those high dew points with temperatures on Wednesday and Thursday in the low to mid 80’s, and you’re going to have a much more uncomfortable warmth here in West Central Ohio.

Future Temperatures

With the added heat and humidity here in Ohio we’ll have the chance for “pop up” showers and thunderstorms pretty much every day this week and this weekend. By no means will any day be a rain out, and the reason for that is because there really won’t be any real forcing mechanism (cold front, warm front, low pressure system) to bring more organized thunderstorms or rain to the region. The better forcing will remain out west through the weekend, and with the better forcing will come the better chance for severe weather.

DAY 2 OUTLOOK

DAY 3 OUTLOOK

As you can see, I am not expecting “pop up” thunderstorms here in Ohio to be severe. But we could see a few storms over the next 4 or 5 days drop some heavy downpours and small hail. Bottom line is that it’s going to be a “rinse, wash, and repeat” forecast through Memorial Day with highs in the 80’s and isolated showers and thunderstorms possible each day!

Have a great night everyone!

-Kyle

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Severe Weather Possible Thursday Evening

(3/30/16)

Two rounds of rain will move through West Central Ohio in the next 24 hours. The first round will move through Wednesday night into Thursday morning here in West Central Ohio bringing mainly just rain and possibly a few embedded thunderstorms through noon on Thursday. Once this first round comes to an end early Thursday afternoon, we’ll get a break from the precipitation through most of the afternoon hours. It’s not until Thursday evening that a cold front will begin to approach and we’ll see our chance for some stronger storms. Here is a look at the current severe weather outlook for Thursday, but as far as we are concerned, Thursday evening.

DAY 2 OUTLOOK

The BIG question on Thursday afternoon is how much sunshine we’ll see here in NW Ohio. If we can stay cloudy most of the afternoon and early evening, thunderstorms that develop Thursday afternoon over higher risk areas to the west (see image above) will be moving into a less favorable environment here in Ohio by the time they reach us into the evening hours.

Kyle RPM 12KM Futurecast

There is no doubt that higher instability and better overall conditions for severe storms will be to the southwest of us here in Lima. However, if we can see a couple of hours of sunshine Thursday afternoon and our temperatures warm into the low 70’s our chance for severe storms will increase. For now I’m leaning towards the scenario that we won’t clear out much Thursday afternoon thanks to residual cloud cover from morning rain, this would lessen our chance for severe weather Thursday evening. Even in this scenario, we’re still looking at a decent chance for some damaging winds of 50 mph+ here in West Central Ohio between 5 and 10 PM. Here is a look at Futurecast around 7 PM Thursday evening.

DMA Future Cast And Temps

Wind shear is pretty strong with this system too! Because of that, an isolated tornado can’t be ruled out either in the 5 to 10 PM timeframe.

SEVERE HAZARD OUTLOOK NEW

The bottom line with this system is that we will see rain, wind gusts of over 40 mph throughout the day on Thursday, and the potential for a few severe storms Thursday evening. Be sure to check our Facebook page and our weather app throughout the day on Thursday for updates!

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Storms NOT Snow Possible Tuesday Night

 

2/1/16

Groundhog Day will bring the chance for severe storms to part of the Ohio Valley but there is not a lot of confidence that those storms will make it as far north as West Central Ohio. One thing is for sure though, after another warm up on Tuesday, we’ll see some very gusty wind, rain and maybe even some thunder before the days end.

Here is the set up with a strong cold front lifting through the mid-west. The front will draw up a good amount of moisture out of the Gulf, but will probably struggle to pull it into most of Ohio during the daylight hours. By 7 PM Tuesday the area I have circled will be the area to watch for severe storms capable of producing damaging wind and isolated tornadoes.

Future Tuesday Evening

This lines up very well with the National Weather Service’s outlook for Tuesday.

DAY 2 OUTLOOK

Once the warm front in the image above lifts to our north we will probably feel temperatures jump into the mid to upper 50’s late Tuesday evening.

Future Temperatures

These warmer temperatures will also be accompanied by some of the increased moisture I talked about earlier, but the timing won’t be very good for thunderstorm development being night-time. Nonetheless, some strong wind could accompany rain that moves in late Tuesday evening with wind gusts potentially over 40 mph.

FUTURE WIND GUSTS

In an effort not to drag this one out I’ll end this post by saying that there is a very low threat for strong thunderstorms here Tuesday evening. Isolated wind gusts over 40 mph will certainly be possible, but the overall threat is something I am not concerned with.

SEVERE HAZARD OUTLOOK NEW

With the rain moving in tomorrow please make sure to stay updated with our weather app!

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-Kyle

Severe Weather In The Midwest This Wednesday

11/9/15

A strong frontal system will plow through the middle part of the United States on Wednesday bringing a widespread threat for severe weather across America’s heartland. As of today’s forecasts, here is how the set up is looking for Wednesday.

Wed Set Up Day

Several different ingredients for severe weather will be coming together including a strong cold front and VERY active jet stream helping to stir trouble here on the ground. One thing to notice on the above graphic is that this system will have limited moisture (dew-points) to work with. This is typical for this time of year the further north you are but it doesn’t completely rule out the chance for severe weather, even though typically the more moist the air is the better the overall threat for storms.

Here is the current outlook from the National Weather Service for Wednesday’s potential storms.

SEVERE WED

Notice how the set up graphic above correlates with the outlook. The area where the strong jet stream winds, cold front, low pressure and moisture coincide is where the best chance for storms including isolated tornadoes will be Wednesday afternoon and evening.

All of this activity will head our way Wednesday night with the chance for strong storms here in West Central Ohio. The good news for us is that several factors will work against us getting any severe weather. Here is a look at the potential set up by about midnight on Wednesday night.

Wed Night Severe

We’ll still be dealing with a strong jet stream moving in, so that greatly enhances our chance for strong winds to the tune of 40 to 50 mph. But we won’t have barely any moisture to work with and without higher dew points the atmosphere has trouble becoming unstable, and without that instability storms have a hard time developing and maintaining strength. Here is a look at our projected dew points Wednesday night. Notice the higher dew points staying to the south and west of West Central Ohio. Where you find the higher moisture, that’s where you’ll find the better chance for storms Wednesday night.

Wed Night Dew Point

Looking closer at the severe weather outlook, it’s clear that’s where the better chance for severe weather is as well.

SEVERE WED ZOOM

 

Having said that, a very strong jet stream can sometimes make up for a lack of instability, but the fact that all this is trying to come together at night has me pretty confident that we’ll very likely just deal with the chance for gusty winds into Thursday morning.

This is definitely something worth watching over the next day or so, but as I mentioned above, I’m not too concerned as of now. Stay tuned!

Also! Be sure to check out our Weather App! It’s great for radar and active watches and warnings!

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-Kyle

 

Why This Picture Is Funny, Sad And True All At The Same Time

10/01/15

Hurricane Track

I have a cousin that lives in Florida who shared this meme with me today as Hurricane Joaquin makes headlines all across the country. While my initial reaction was to laugh at both at the picture itself and the obvious misspelling, it really got me thinking about how I communicate the weather.

The above picture, while clearly exaggerated, highlights that uncertainty that meteorologists see every single day when they look at forecast models. Here is a perfect example of that uncertainty with Wednesday’s forecast models showing their projected Joaquin track.

Tropical Spaghetti Models

And now today’s (Thursday’s) models showing the projected Joaquin track.

Tropical Spaghetti Models 2

In just 24 hours there is a BIG difference in the two pictures with the latter showing a much greater potential for a track out to sea and hopefully away from the United States. The forecast will continue to become more accurate in the days to come as the storm moves further north and closer to the U.S.

Now back to my original picture.

Hurricane Track

I want to share a couple of thoughts that go through my head every day and especially when there is the potential for something to have a big impact like a winter storm, severe weather outbreak or even in this case a hurricane.

1) Before social media I’m willing to bet the majority of the public didn’t know plots like this even existed. Social media makes it SO easy to share information and I think that’s a great thing. But how much information can we really digest in any given day? I can’t help but think that your average Joe is perusing through his or her Facebook feed thinking this. “Oh, that’s a cute (insert animal here), looks like so and so had a great vacation! I can’t believe how big their kid is getting! Oh my goodness, what the heck is this?”

Tropical Spaghetti Models 2

“Don’t those meteorologists have ANY idea on where that dang hurricane is headed, how dumb can they be?”

I LOVE sharing information on how the weather process works, how it develops and how it is forecasted. But I think it’s an honest question to ask when I say “Is this information overload on a platform like Facebook or Twitter? Or is this something that people genuinely want to see and learn more about?”

2) Are meteorologists shooting themselves in the foot when they share images like this? I have been a meteorologist for nearly 10 years professionally. I have seen the climate both before and AFTER the social media boom. There is immense pressure to be the first to post, the first to give a forecast even when it’s 7 or 8 days out and the overall expectation to make sure whatever it is you post on social media gets attention, likes and shares. This inherently creates a “what if” climate in the weather world (which I myself am guilty of too!) What essentially is happening is that meteorologists are taking the uncertainty in forecasts that has ALWAYS existed and sharing it publicly exposing that uncertainty to the public. A running joke that I always hear time and time again is, “I wish I had your job, I wish I could be right half the time and still keep my job!” I know that 95% of the people who tell me this are joking, but there is truth to a joke sometimes. The fact of the matter is that most meteorologists are right the vast majority of the time, unfortunately it’s just human nature to remember the few busted forecasts rather than the successes. I constantly wonder if we are only perpetuating that notion by sharing these “what if” scenarios even if we make it abundantly clear that they are not forecasts.

I’ve seen meteorologists in the camp that says limit your sharing to social media and I have seen meteorologists who share everything they can. Who am I to say what’s right? All I know is that I’m pretty lucky to be in such a changing industry, and it’s a challenge everyday to try to figure out the best ways to communicate across all these new and exciting platforms.

-Kyle

 

 

 

 

 

Blood Moon/Supermoon Total Lunar Eclipse, Here’s Everything You Need To Know!

9/24/15

West Central Ohio is in for quite the celestial treat late Sunday evening if we can manage to keep the skies clear! The fourth total lunar eclipse in 2 years will be seen around much of the world as the moon is expected to pass completely into the earth’s shadow!

No doubt you have probably heard the terms “Blood Moon” and “Super Moon ” being thrown around with this upcoming eclipse, these terms both sound pretty intimidating until you look at what they actually mean and what we can expect when viewing this event.

Blood Moon: As far as I know and understand, every TOTAL lunar eclipse can be considered a blood moon. Think of when the sun sets and changes color. As the light from the sun is blocked by the earth’s horizon and is refracted, the light begins to be filtered leaving mostly orangeish/reddish colors remaining. The same process takes place during a total lunar eclipse when the sun’s light is blocked and refracted around the earth as moon moves into the earth’s shadow.

Eclipse Graphic

Super Moon: The “Super Moon” term refers to the full moon where the moon is closest to the earth during its monthly cycle, or otherwise known as its “perigee”. The perigee this month happens to both fall on the full moon AND the day of the eclipse (Sunday Night). At this time the moon will be roughly 220,000 miles from earth making it appear slightly bigger.  According to NASA, this won’t happen again until 2033.

So when can we expect to see this phenomenon?

The eclipse will technically begin just after 8 PM Sunday evening but probably won’t be visible to the naked eye until 9:07 PM when the moon begins to pass into the earth’s umbral shadow.

Eclipse 1

The total eclipse will begin shortly after 10 PM.

Eclipse 2

The total eclipse will be visible for over 1 hour and come to an end at 11:23 PM.

Eclipse 3

Then onto another partial eclipse with the event nearing its end by 12:27 AM Monday morning.

Eclipse 4

As of now the forecast calls for mostly cloudy skies on Sunday, this definitely isn’t ideal for watching the eclipse, but I’m still confident that because of the length of this event we should be able to see parts of it! I’ll keep you updated!

-Kyle

 

Heavy Rain/Severe Storms Possible Into Next Week

7/10/15

Just what we here in West Central Ohio need to hear right? As we venture through the weekend we’ll start things off with a partly to mostly sunny day on Saturday but by Sunday the chance for showers and thunderstorms will return.

The same stationary front that has been sitting to our south for the last 3 or 4 days will creep back northward as a warm front for the second half of the weekend. AS OF NOW it’s still up in the air as to how far this warm front will be able to lift north. The further north the front lifts, the better chance we will see for both more heavy rain and severe weather. Here is a look at the position of the front based on the RPM forecast model as of late Sunday. (Keep in mind, that I’m thinking any showers and thunderstorms on Sunday will probably be below severe limits.)

Future 1

This front will be the boundary for a VERY warm and unstable air mass into next week. Due to increased heat and humidity CAPE values have the potential to be very high especially Monday here in West Central Ohio. Forecast models are still divided on how far north the front will make it on Monday. The GFS has the front the furthest north and brings the very unstable air mass into NW Ohio on Monday. Here is a look at the CAPE (Convective Available Potential Energy) values into Monday evening. Numbers above 2 or 3 thousand j/kg indicate the potential for an explosive storm environment. Notice much of the region is in the 3 to 4 thousand j/kg range.

GFS CAPE

When you couple that high CAPE with a warm front in the region that definitely catches a meteorologists attention! This scenario for Monday is still 3 days away and is definitely not set in stone, just something to watch over the next 24 to 48 hours to see if it pans out or not.

Here is a look at the NAM forecast model CAPE on Monday. Notice it’s shifted further west and south but still extremely high!

NAM CAPE

Basically the point I’m trying to make is that somewhere in the Southern Great Lakes region will be in line for a severe weather outbreak on Monday. It’s all dependent on where exactly that warm front sets up. You can bet I’ll be watching, especially Monday!

If you haven’t yet, check out our weather app to stay up on the latest radar and any watches/warnings that may be issued!

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-Kyle

 

 

Severe Thunderstorms Possible Wednesday With an Active Weather Pattern Ahead

6/9/15

After a couple of stormy days here in West Central Ohio on Sunday and Monday, a dry day today will likely be the last in the region for the remainder of the week. Temperatures and overall mugginess will really climb into Wednesday out ahead of a weak cold front expected to drop in out of the north. Highs on Wednesday have a very good chance to reach into the upper 80’s along with dew points into the upper 60’s that will make for quite the “sticky day” outdoors. Here is a look at projected highs and dew points tomorrow afternoon and evening.

Future Temperatures

Future Dew Points

A warm and humid air mass combined with a weak cold front edging into West Central Ohio Wednesday afternoon will set the stage for thunderstorms to potentially develop during the afternoon/evening hours. As of now West Central Ohio is under a “slight risk” for severe weather per the Storm Prediction Center.

DAY 2 OUTLOOK

When I look for severe weather outbreaks I generally look for three things. CAPE, Some sort of trigger and wind shear. In Wednesday’s case, two of these three elements appear to be available.

CAPE- You have probably heard me talk about CAPE before. The acronym stands for Convective Available Potential Energy. CAPE is a large product of temperature and dew point, if the temperatures are high along with dew points (or moisture in the air) CAPE generally rises. With such high temperatures and dew points Wednesday CAPE values across West Central Ohio should easily rise above 2,000 j/kg which is getting moderately high. This would be more than enough potential energy to spark off thunderstorms. Here is a look at CAPE values from both the NAM and GFS Wednesday evening.

GFS CAPE

NAM CAPE

A Trigger: In this case it’s a cold front. A weak cold front will drop in out of the north tomorrow afternoon providing just enough lift necessary to spark off thunderstorms in a very warm and moist environment. Here is a look at the front placement Wednesday afternoon and evening along with showers and storms developing along it.

FUTURE 1

FUTURE 2

Wind Shear: In this case there is VERY little wind shear available with this set up, which is a good thing if you don’t want long-lived severe thunderstorms. Wind shear can be best characterized by a change in wind speed or direction with height in the atmosphere. Without very good wind shear Wednesday storms will likely be confined to a very small area along the cold front where they can tap into the high CAPE. Because of the lack of wind shear these storms will likely die as quickly as they flare up. It’s the high wind shear that helps to maintain thunderstorms once they develop, and in Wednesday’s case there isn’t much at all.

So what do I think?

I definitely think scattered storms will develop somewhere in NW Ohio late Wednesday afternoon and evening. Once the storms develop they will likely grow very fast due to a pretty unstable atmosphere that’s in place thanks to high CAPE. These storms probably won’t be very long-lived with the window for these storms developing being between 4 to 9 PM. Because of the low wind shear I don’t foresee much of a tornado threat, but there will be the chance for some very gusty winds that could lead to some isolated damage. Hail will also be a possibility, but not so much as the wind in my opinion. Overall it’s a pretty low-end chance for severe weather, but something that I will definitely be keeping an eye on all day Wednesday!

Also! Don’t forget to stay up with the latest radar and warnings with our weather app!

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-Kyle