5/11/10 Update

I have looked at very little regarding today’s set-up, but the major players of shear, instability, moisture and forcing seem to have shown up for the game this afternoon and evening.  The latest MD graphic below:

We are still learning from the data collected from the original project Vortex back in 1994-1995.  I hope they succeed in some quality intercepts today to further that knowledge base even more.  -Dave

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33 responses to “5/11/10 Update

  1. In a way I’m glad we’re not out there today. Looking at various chaser networks, it looks like an absolute zoo out there. If I were out there, I’d be playing close to the KS border… still in the good parameters but further from the OKC circus.

  2. The first tornado reports have occurred in western Kansas closer to the backed winds with the surface low.

    http://www.spc.noaa.gov/climo/reports/today.html

  3. i expect tornado reports to migrate with the low so they can feed off the backed winds. following a right mover in north-central OK

  4. The cell west of Ponca City OK (Kathryn’s right move, I’m pretty sure) has an extremely obvious hook now. (4:40 p.m.)

    Looks like Chris’ target of Great Bend and mine of Wichita would have both worked to catch violent supercells.

  5. I’ve been watching a stream from a chaser on the storm… absolutely incredible cloud tag action. Haven’t seen a tornado yet.

  6. Wow! I just counted 12 radar-indicated tornadic circulations on the GRLevel3 display from TDWR Wichita. Kevin’s right: both our targets would have been productive today.

  7. Wichita AND Oklahoma City are both tornado-warned as of 6:20 PM EDT.

  8. McConnell Air Force Base is named in the Wichita tornado warning … the site of some iconic tornado footage from the 1991 outbreak most famous for the deadly Andover KS tornado. Linked below if you don’t remember it or have never seen it:

  9. Watching TWC a min ago, they were showing a live feed from a helicopter in OKC and a very brief tornado spun up and went right down a roadway. Didn’t see any cars get tossed or anything though there were a lot of them around… people need to heed the warnings tonight.

  10. CNN has been showing a huge funnel somewhere in that region.

  11. TWC guys with V2 are reporting a wedge tornado near Shawnee

  12. Tornado ALMOST hits the National Weather Center at Norman OK:

    FUNNEL CLOUD WAS ORIGINALLY OBSERVED DESCENDING RAPIDLY AT 532 PM FROM THE NATIONAL WEATHER CENTER BUILDING. DAMAGE AND TOUCHDOWN REPORTED JUST EAST OF THE BUILDING ALONG HIGHWAY 9. TORNADO THEN GREW IN SIZE…SIGNIFICANT AND LARGE TORNADO STILL ON THE GROUND CAUSING DAMAGE.

  13. Ardmore is under the gun now… our ’08 cities aren’t fairing well today.

    Absolutely devastating footage between OKC and Shawnee along I-40. Love’s truck stop destroyed and a neighborhood almost flattened nearby. Huge power transmission lines twisted up.

  14. Never seen a tornado warning like this:

    “NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE RADAR DETECTED SEVERE
    THUNDERSTORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING FOUR TORNADOES.”

  15. watching the storms approach ardmore now andrew….also got a radar clip of the norman storm practically on top of the norman radar site

  16. I wonder if our Days Inn or the Van’s Pig Stand BBQ restaurant got hit. We stayed at that Days Inn in both ’07 and ’08.

  17. The tornado signatures stayed south of I-40 through Shawnee which is good for the Days Inn but not for Van’s

  18. Andrew: I thought the same thing you did about that “four-tornado” warning text. NEVER seen that before. I’ve seen them noting two separate tornadoes in training cells moving through the same county (Kansas 08 had some warnings like that when we were out there), but not 4 in one storm.

  19. 4-inch hail reported at Moore, OK — where we NEVER EVER want to be!

  20. .. never want to be in the 4-inch hail that is … nothing against the good folks of Moore, who have had more than their share of tornado tragedy over the years.

  21. Hi folks. My name’s Ryan and I’m the proprietor of Gobbler Country, a Virginia Tech sports blog. I’m a life-long Tech fan and Central Oklahoma native. I keep in touch with Dan Goff via El Twitter and he suggested I drop you a line on the blog here.

    If you guys wind up coming through Central Oklahoma, please drop me a line at either gobblercountry@gmail.com or @gobblercountry. I’d be happy to buy you a beverage or two. Good luck on your upcoming chase.

    • Ryan, we may very well be in your neck of the woods! Will try to contact you if we are in the area and have some time. -Dave

  22. hokiestormchaser

    …I will post a couple of radar images tomorrow…some pretty incredible velocity couplets on these storms. -Dave

  23. Even Norman OK got hit, and they usually somehow manage to avoid that. Incredible outbreak!

    • The reason is topography. The west side and downtown Norman are in a valley and storms usually follow the ridge to the North, which is why Moore usually gets hit. The tornado that hit Norman hit on the far East side of town over by Lake Dirty Bird, and it did that by following Highway 9, which runs SW-NE on the far South side of town.

  24. I think I’m even more glad we weren’t out there today seeing the footage of the devastation… I think the sights of today would have left the rest of the trip with a black cloud over it.

  25. hokiestormchaser

    I tend to think we would have skipped the OKC area in general…maybe starting with the early supercells close to the KS border, and when those left us in the dust perhaps dropping southward, staying well east of the metro area toward I-40 to try to intercept the storms as they moved east of OKC in the early evening. The storms were moving pretty fast, almost as fast as our storms in ’08, so each intercept would be relatively brief depending upon the road network. -Dave

  26. If we had been out there, I would have rather we been on one of the storms to the north rather than in the OKC metro mess (traffic, chaser circus, destruction). This would have been an extremely grueling and emotionally difficult 1st storm chase out of the chute. I’ll gladly take an isolated supercell with a picturesque funnel over vacant High Plains scrub brush over this.

  27. I called somewhere between Ponca City, OK and Arkansas City, KS today, and it looks like we would have seen something. I have a few radar images I will try to post later.

  28. I was thinking the same thing, Kevin. It was a high risk a few miles from OKC- I bet there was 200 chasers on that storm.

  29. One final note: a day like today produced an outbreak. Even if you’d been in OK, you wouldn’t have been guaranteed a tornado. I just got off the phone with Bobby Edmonds, who I’ve chased with numerous times. He was all over I-35 north of OKC and saw many funnels, but no tornado. Several times, he would be 20-30 miles from a tornadic cell, but without the proper road network to get to them.

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