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27 April 2016

Properly Communicating a Forecast Is Just As Important as Accuracy

The Storm Prediction Center’s outlook for severe weather verified fairly well yesterday. There were not that many tornadoes and the reason for this was likely that the wind shear was not that favorable in spite of an extremely unstable airmass. Still, the graphic above shows where the reports of wind damage, hail, and tornadoes were, and it matches well with the forecast outlook. The storms forecasted for New Jersey developed, …


26 April 2016

GOES 14 One Minute Imagery of Plains Storms

The spare GOES 14 weather satellite can send back an image every minute, and it was turned on today to give forecasters a look at the tornado and severe storms developing in the Plains. We will see this imagery more frequently in the future after the launch of the GOES R weather satellite next fall. You can see the imagery at the link below, but you will need a good …


23 March 2016

Snow and Fire In The Plains

Denver is getting buried by what may turn out to be a historic spring blizzard. Twenty inches, and it’s still falling. The airport has shut down, and travel is nearly impossible on area roads. The winds are gusting to 55 mph in Denver and the snow is pouring down, while the visibility is not much better than 300 meters. It’s a real high Plains blizzard, and it is bringing Denver …


11 March 2016

Attributing Extreme Weather Events to Climate Change

My friend Heidi Cullen at Climate Central in Princeton has an excellent Op-Ed in the New York Times today. It’s about a new study released by the National Academies on attributing extreme weather events to climate change. The study itself is on my reading list for tonight, and you can read it yourself for free. Just click the image below. I know several of the researchers who worked on this …


8 March 2016

Major Flood Event Underway From Texas to Missouri

A major flood threat is underway in Texas, and in the Miss. Valley tonight, and it will continue through the next 3 days or longer. Severe storms are also possible, but rain amounts of over 10 inches are possible, as an intense El Nino induced storm stalls over the area. This is the same storm that brought rain and snow to California late Sunday and Monday. This storm is moving slowly, …


29 February 2016

23|5 Talks at the AMS Annual Meeting

I was honored to be master of ceremonies at the 23-5 session (23.5 degrees is the tilt of Earth respect to the ecliptic) at the AMS Annual Meeting in January, and the video from the session is now online. The talks were all fantastic, and the evening ended with the movie based on Dr. Oreskes’ book Merchants of Doubt. When someone who thinks climate change is a hoax made up by …


23 February 2016

Stunning One Minute Rapid-Scan GOES 14 Images

This is the current image from the GOES-14 satellite that is in storage. It is turned on for high impact weather events because it can send one minute images. The tornado outbreak expected on the Gulf Coast today certainly ranks as a high impact event, and we should have this data through the evening. When GOES R launches we will see  even higher resolution images at 30 second intervals along …


4 February 2016

Really NBC?? Really??

Really NBC? Really?? Did you forget about the SPC Enhanced risk outlook from two days before. Did you forget about the Tornado Watch hours before, and the numerous tornado warnings minutes before?? Really?? You owe an apology to the NWS and the broadcast mets in that area who made sure there WAS a warning. Really. You do. The map below was issued by the Storm Prediction Center about 36 HOURS …


17 January 2016

Meteo-Tsunami in Naples Area

  A rare event seems to have happened in SW Florida this morning, as a strong squall line moved through. It’s called a meteo-tsunami, and it pushed water levels up by over 5 feet! The squall line also produced at least two tornadoes, with one of them causing significant damage to 14 homes near Cape Coral. A real clue that this was indeed a meteo tsunami, is the pressure couplet recorded by the Naples tide buoy. …


1 January 2016

December 2015 Re-writes The Record Books. So Does the Entire Year.

December 2015 is in the record books and it was not just the warmest December on record for much of the Eastern Seaboard, it broke the old records by an amount that’s best described as incredible. This is what happens when you combine the strongest El Nino event on record, with the hottest year on record globally, along with the hottest oceans on record as well. Dr. Michael Mann at …


28 December 2015

Bizarre December Weather Continues

  The Garland, Texas tornado (on Boxing Day) has been rated EF 4 with winds around 200 mph. The Doppler radar network now using dual polarization made it possible to know that the tornado was on the ground and lofting debris into the air. This is perfect example of how fundamental science research can lead to life saving technology. Below is an update on the Dallas area tornado outbreak from …


24 December 2015

Long Track Tornado In Mississippi in Late December!

The image above shows intense rotation caused by a violent tornado near Holly Springs in Miss. this afternoon. Check out the YouTube video of this long track tornado below. December tornadoes happen but a long track violent tornado in late December is very rare.   Highs will climb into the 70’s, and break the record highs in most areas of the Mid-Atlantic and New England Thursday. Thunderstorms are possible as …


29 November 2015

What A Cold Front!

A rather incredible surface temperature chart greeted meteorologists this afternoon. An extremely sharp frontal boundary separated very warm weather from unusually cold. Behind the front, temperatures were 10-20 degrees below average, and ahead of it 10-15 degrees above average, and in some spots the departure from normal was even greater. Look at the temperatures at 1 PM EST and you can see that towns in western MS were reporting temps. …


17 November 2015

I’ve Never Seen Hail Like This Before

Rain drops and hail stones need something to form around, and we refer to this as condensation nuclei. The image below shows something else though. A tornado in the Texas panhandle last night picked up stalks of corn, and lifted them high into the atmosphere, where water froze on it, turning it into a hail stone. The picture was taken by Johnny Goodson of Pampa,Texas. That was one powerful updraft, …


6 November 2015

Did Climate Change Make “This” Storm Worse? Perhaps.

The AMS has published its annual look at how climate change may have impacted certain major weather events, and it makes for some fascinating reading. This kind of research is called an attribution study, and they can be very informative. One of the most famous, was done by Dr. Ben Santer (Nat. Academies) that showed how different greenhouse warming looks vs. warming due to an increase in energy from the …


6 October 2015

Two Incredible Images

These two images speak for themselves. One is from the Suomi satellite, which can take images of the Earth lit by moonlight alone. and the second image needs little or no explanation…


1 October 2015

Historic Storm Threatens the Mid-Atlantic

Hurricane Joaquin is now a Cat 3 storm with 115 mph winds tonight, but even if it does not turn toward the Mid-Atlantic coastline, we will see a significant coastal Nor’easter across the Mid-Atlantic from New Jersey to North Carolina including the Delaware and Maryland Beaches. This is because of a strong pressure gradient between a large Canadian high pressure over New England and a low pressure system in the Carolinas. …


29 June 2015

The Great Derecho Was Three Years Ago Today

  Three years ago tonight I was introducing the viewers of my evening weather broadcast to a new weather term: The Derecho. Here on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, I first mentioned it on air around 5 PM. Through the early evening, I watched it get closer and closer, and by mid evening it was likely that we would be affected. When it arrived at our studios in Salisbury, the …


20 June 2015

The Ghost of Bill Heads for The East Coast

It’s a summer weekend here in the Mid-Atlantic, and that means thousands are on the beaches from Fire Island To Ocean City in Maryland, while at the same time, the Firefly music festival just north of Dover in Delaware has drawn a crowd of 95,000 people to see such acts as Paul McCartney (I typed that name standing up of course) and Snoop Dog. Now, add in the remains of …


15 June 2015

Severe Flood Threat for Texas and Oklahoma Rising

Virtually all of the global and regional numerical weather models are showing the potential for very heavy rainfall from what will soon be Tropical Storm Bill in the Gulf. Even if this region had not had historic flooding in May, this would be a big deal, but with the soggy ground, we are now looking at the potential for a very severe and costly flood event. There are some indications …