Bill Steffen

Tuesday

May 12th, 2015 at 2:42 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Lake Michigan Muskegon Haze With Girl May 2015ISS - Scandanavia and Aurora Here’s a couple of really cool pictures. On the left, this is from Julie at ReportIt. It’s the Muskegon shore with a shadowed figure and in the evening light fog, you can see the tower out on the breakwater. On the right, we have a picture from the ISS of northern Europe with the green aurora above the Earth.

Noon – It’s cloudy, breezy and cool (satellite).  The noon temp. is 46 in G.R. with a sprinkle (radar).  It’s 46 in Muskegon, 51 in Kalamazoo.  The wind in G.R. is 15 mph.  We are getting gusts of 25-30 mph at the lakeshore airports.   The Muskegon beach weather station shows only 43.3 deg. at noon with a 16 mph wind off the lake.  That’s about as cool as it’s going to get…we should go up a few degrees this PM.  There are some breaks in the clouds over Lake Michigan. Today will be the coolest day of the week with temperatures in the 50s during the afternoon and near 50 at Lake Michigan.  We may catch a sprinkle or very light shower, but precipitation amounts would be quite light (mainly trace amounts).  We’ll continue to have a brisk west wind.  Lots of clouds this afternoon, but a few breaks in the overcast.  The wind dies down and the sun comes out for much of Wednesday.   The GFS gives G.R. a wind up to 22 mph this PM.  The model gives us the highest probability of rain this week on Friday and takes high temps. back up to 75 Sat. and 80 on Sun.   I still don’t see any widespread frost in the next week…we may get to the upper 30s Weds. AM, but it looks like we hold a 5 mph wind overnight.

Great Lakes ice cover is down to 1.2%, with Lake Superior at 3.2% and Lake Huron at 0.3%.   Last year on 5/11, Lake Superior still had an astonishing 27.8% ice cover!  Lake Michigan had 0.9% and Lake Huron had a 5.0% ice cover.


Tornado Watch Ends For Michigan

May 11th, 2015 at 2:35 pm by under Bill's Blog, News, Weather

WW0164 RadarThere’s still a few showers…east of Lansing to east of Marshall.  The last showers will exit Calhoun and Branch Counties shortly.  The last shower came thru G.R. around 7:40 pm.

The Tornado Watch for portions of Eastern Indiana, Northern and Western Ohio and Northern Kentucky expired at 8 pm EDT.   There is still a line of storms moving through Eastern Ohio.    It’ll become partly to mostly cloudy and breezy behind the front.

We’ve had some marginal severe hail and wind with the storms in eastern Indiana and Ohio (1″ diameter hail and 60 mph winds).  Here’s SPC storm reports – minor wind damage in Wayne and Monroe Counties in SE Michigan.

Also:  A helicopter view of the flooding Trinity River in downtown Dallas TXEl Nino intensifying…  Survey crews have determined a prelim rating of EF-3 in Van TX from last night’s tornado…up to 6 fatalities now in Southern tornadoes.  27,000 people are without power across western Pennsylvania.

Rainfall today:  0.3″ G.R., 0.53″ Muskegon, 0.65″ Holland, 0.28″ Kalamazoo, 0.25″ Battle Creek.   Monthly rainfall:  3.02″ Holland, 2.9″ Kent City, 2.43″ Kalamazoo, 2.39″ Battle Creek, 1.90″ Muskegon, 1.73″ Grand Rapids.


Severe Storm Risk Area for This Afternoon

May 10th, 2015 at 2:40 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

day1probotlk_1300_torn day1otlk_1300 This is the Severe Weather Risk Area for this afternoon (updated around 9:45 am) from the Storm Prediction Center (map on the right).  A large area is outlined from S. Lower Michigan to the Gulf Coast.  SPC says:  “THUNDERSTORMS ARE EXPECTED TO DEVELOP ALONG A COLD FRONT FROM LOWER MICHIGAN TO CENTRAL TEXAS.  ISOLATED DAMAGING WINDS AND SOME HAIL ARE THE PRIMARY THREATS…LATEST THINKING IS STRONGLY SHEARED FRONTAL CONVECTION WILL ADVANCE EWD EXHIBITING LINEAR CHARACTERISTICS FAVORABLE FOR GUSTY WINDS AND PERHAPS SOME HAIL WITH THE STRONGEST UPDRAFTS.  LARGE-SCALE FORCING SUGGESTS MOST-ORGANIZED CONVECTION MAY EVOLVE ALONG NRN PORTIONS OF THE FRONT.”   Accu-Weather severe outlook is from G.R. south.  The map on the left is the tornado probability from the Storm Prediction Center.  The tornado probably is 5% (within 25 miles of a point) in the gray area from SE Michigan (east of I-96) to N. Ohio.   If I were storm chasing today, I might center on NW Ohio.    The film ‘Twister’ premiered in theaters 19 years ago Sunday, May 10, 1996.

Satellite loop shows lots of clouds for late AM/midday that will hold down surface heating…Dense Fog Advisory ends at 11 am…GRR radarlarge rain area moving up from Illinois should also hold temps. down.  NWS GRR graphic on this PM’s storm potential.   Added lots of links in the thread below (watch the roof fly off a high school – 100 people were inside at the time!).  I-45 closed south of Dallas TX due to flooding.  EF3 tornado in Eastland Co. TX – yeah, that was a trailer!

As of midnight Sunday, the U.S. has had 26 tornado reports today, 53 tornado reports on Saturday, 149 tornado reports in the last 5 days and 162 reports in the last 8 days – an active period.  Some of these are duplicate reports.  So far, most have hit rural areas and caused little damage.  The tornadoes on Sunday have been in N. Texas, SE S. Dakota, SE Oklahoma and W. Iowa.   Here’s one near Brandon TXanother from Eads CO…a daily record 1.17″ of precipitation Saturday at Rapid City SD.  That included a daily record 6.1″ of snow.  Look at the snow reports from Western S.D….up to 18″ at Lead, 17″ at Deerfield, 14.5″ at Silver City and 13.5″ one mile east of downtown Rapid City.  This was the 2nd biggest May snowstorm ever in Rapid City.  Here’s a picLook at US 20 west of Chadron NE!   Tropical Storm Dolphin in the Western Pacific should be a significant hurricane (typhoon) near Guam in a week.   From the “Scary-Looking Cloud Club” – these are not tornadoes.  Tornado in Delmont S.D. Sunday PM rated EF2.  Tornado Saturday in Eastland TX rated EF3 (yes, that is a car – or what’s left of it.  National Guard doing water rescues in Krum, TX.   Typhoon Noul just east of Luzon, Philippines.   Oklahoma City is 10″ above average for rain in May so far!  Denton, TX tornado video.   4.93″ of rain measured at Corsicana, TX in an hour and a half, over 6″ in 2 hours!

24-hour rainfall ending at 8 pm Sunday:  0.37″ Big Rapids, 0.41″ G.R., 0.57″ Muskegon, 0.73″ Battle Creek, 0.96″ Kalamazoo.

I’ll continue to track the situation here on the blog.   Here’s the complete Severe Weather Outlook Areas from SPC.   SW Michigan is in the General T-Storm Outlook through Sunday night.  More tornadoes for the S. Plains, where there is an enhanced risk area.


Monday – Updated AM

May 10th, 2015 at 2:36 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Fog (lifting quickly at 10 am) this AM with warm, moist air overriding the cooler air.  Find the warm front…at 10 am, 58 deg. in G.R. (up 6 in the last hour) and 70 in S. Haven and Battle Creek.  Cold front just east of the Mississippi River.  Scattered showers and a few t-storms today.  The best bet for stronger storms today is southeast of G.R. after about 1 pm.  More on our chances for severe weather in Michigan tomorrow (Mon.) PM in the thread above.  Links below.

Four fatalities in storms last night.   Video of roof flying off high school in Lake City IAmultiple vortex tornado Sunday at Wakita OK (I’ve been in Wakita)…what’s left of mobile home where two people died last night in Nashville AR26 injuries in Van TXmore than 6″ of snow on the ground this AM in Bowdle SDlooks like winter at the NWS office in RAPpercent of average rainfall, last 7 days (heavy rains have fallen in OK/TX)…CFSv2 predicting near average rainfall for Michigan into June…above average rainfall for much of the country.   El Nino strengthening, N, Hemisphere warmer relative to average than S. Hemisphere.   Western S. Dakota – covered in snow.

 

Here’s Grand Rapids radar and Northern Michigan radar, NAM model 3-day snowfall forecast and GFS model 5-day snowfall forecast. Storm Total Snowfall will show the heaviest snow and Milwaukee looping radar. Regional radar and the Updated GRR NWS Short Term Discussion. More links: Northern Indiana radar, Chicago radar, Detroit radar and Milwaukee radar. Here’s College of DuPage Radar Map (pick any radar in the U.S.), College of DuPage Grand Rapids radar, the West Michigan Lightning Tracker, National Lightning Tracker, the local warning/advisory map and the National warning/watch/advisory map, a surface weather map. You can checkout the latest Grand Rapids NWS discussion, the Northern Indiana NWS discussion (includes the Michigan Counties that border Indiana), the discussion for Northern Lower Michigan, and Eastern Lower Michigan. Here’s the Spyglass Condos Weather Station the S. Haven GLERL station, the Muskegon GLERL station, the Grand Haven Steelheaders webcam and weather station, and the weather station at Holland State Park. Check out the Maranatha Webcam at Lake Michigan and links to webcams. Here’s the infrared satellite loop (night) and the visible satellite loop (daytime), Lake Michigan water temperatures (summer). Here’s recent storm reports from SW Michigan, Northern Michigan, NE Illinois, SE. Wisconsin, Upper Michigan and E. Michigan. Check out the wind and wave height at the South Mid-Lake Michigan Buoy (Apr. to Nov. only), the North Mid-Lake Michigan Buoy (Apr. to Nov. only), the buoy at Big Sable Point near Ludington and the weather station on the beach at St. Joseph. Here’s Michigan wind gusts from MesoWest, data from the MAWN agricultural weather stations and Weather Underground (data at the bottom from private weather stations). Here’s the Consumers Energy Power Outage Map, Here’s www.instantweathermaps.com.


Blog Hack for Bill’s Birthday!

May 9th, 2015 at 6:49 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

A ‘Stache of Wisdom – 10 Life Lessons Bill Steffen taught his Daughters

 

1. If you don’t do it, you won’t do it.  Dad never swears – not even those times back in the ‘80s when our basement flooded annually.  Why?  Because Dad was smart enough to figure out that if you simply never swear, you won’t have to worry about accidentally swearing on television.

2. Talent is a raw material. It’s true that Dad has a talent for what he does. But he wouldn’t be where he is today if he hadn’t worked hard; like so amazingly, relentlessly hard. When Dad’s coworkers arranged for Saturdays off, Dad went out to do a speech. When nobody else wanted to be in a parade, our whole family would go have a grand time enjoying the small town the parade was in. We learned by example that if you want to be successful, talent is only worth something if you chase it with hard work.

3. Take four steps, aim for the third arrow from the right.  That is the secret to bowling. In the Steffen house you’ll find more than a few celebrity bowling trophies.  Back when celebrity bowling events were the rage Bill Steffen was a force to be reckoned with.

4. You don’t need it.  We didn’t have cable or air conditioning until 2000. Our happiest childhood memories were running through the sprinkler and playing on the slip-n-slide.  We spent winters sledding at Richmond Park and Union Hill.

5.  Anvils don’t only scare cartoons.  An anvil cloud means that a thunderstorm is brewing. And the Steffen girls can spot a stratocumuls cloud from a mile away (Get it? Because stratocumulus clouds are usually found about a mile off the ground…weather humor).

6.  Invest in things that appreciate in value.  Cars depreciate in value.  Dad drove his 2000 Ford Explorer for no less than 14 years, until Daughter #3 told him that was the last time she was picking him up on the side of the highway at 2 AM when it broke down. But you are something that appreciates in value. Get an education and invest in learning opportunities.

7.   Trail Mix.  Trail mix is the ultimate food and should be consumed daily.  Preferably at 2am while updating your blog.

8.   Think for yourself.  When someone tells you something – be it a politician, a pastor, a friend, turn your brain on and think for yourself – then make an informed decision.  The popular decision and the right decision are not always the same.

9. People are just dying to get in there.  Every time Dad passes a graveyard, he says “People are just dying to get in there.”  Every. Stinking. Time.  He’s been saying this for as long as we can remember, and he still tells that joke, as if we haven’t heard him tell it at least once a month for the last 30+ years.

10. The concept of internet security is lost on some very smart people.  This is like the zillionth time we’ve hacked this blog.  It’s our privilege to share our father and his wisdom with the Grand Rapids community.

Happy Birthday, Dad!

- Daughters # 1 & 3

 


Saturday PM

May 8th, 2015 at 2:46 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Sat. midday -  Showers have moved northeast.  I can’t rule out an additional shower this PM, but most of the time it will be dry.  There may be a brief period of drizzle.  We’ll hang onto the clouds in most areas.  The front at noon is along I-94 and it will likely sink south at least to the Indiana border.  Temperatures are in the upper 60s south of the front and low-mid 60s to the north, except it is cooler near the lake (currently just 49 at the Muskegon beach and 52 at the S. Haven beach as I write this).  Rainfall:  0.39″ G.R., 0.46″ Muskegon, 1.31″ Holland (I’ll be in the parade this afternoon, which starts at 2 pm).  Allendale was at 1″ of rain the last time I checked.

There was a little small hail at Albion yesterday evening.  There will be a chance of a couple of showers/t-storms right through the weekend, but much of the time it will not be raining, and rain chances don’t get back above 50% until late Sunday.  The best chance of heavy or severe storms will be Monday.  That is not a sure thing.  The severe weather may stay just off to our south with more general showers and storms here, but it’s certainly worth paying attention to updates on Monday’s weather.  Cooler and drier weather moves in from Tues. PM to Thursday of next week.     It was cooler near the lake Friday afternoon.  At 2:30 pm it was 58.3 deg. at the Muskegon beach (with some fog) and 63.3 at the S. Haven beach, while it was near 80 inland.

Here’s Storm Reports from FridayConvective Outlooks (Moderate Risk Today)…I-44 closed in places due to flooding near Tulsa…4th wettest 30-day period every in Oklahoma City…they could reach #1…lightning and a rainbow togetherFirst snow in the mountains east of San Diego in May since 1998…Mt. Palomar had 1.65″ of precipitation…old record for precipitation on any May 8 was 0.10″.  Escondido had 0.64″ of rain.  Chilly high temps. Friday:  63 Las Vegas NV, 71 Palm Springs CA, 44 Billings MT, 46 Cheyenne WY, 39 Devils Lake ND, 46 International Falls MN…drifts of hail….20″ of snow near Yosemite…tornado on Grand Bahama IsMt. Hope KS Tornado was an EF36-12″ of snow for the Black Hillsup to a foot of snow for Wyoming…up to 8″ snow for the mountains of Coloradoup to 10″ for the mountains of Utah.

The Plains continue to get severe weather and heavy rain.  24-hour totals:  4.07″ Bowie TX, 3.37″ Lincoln NE (May record), 3.43″ Durant OK, 3.38″ Childress TX, 1.74″ Omaha NE, 1.47 Siren WI, 1.27 St. Joseph MO.   Convective outlooks and other links in the thread below.

Here’s Grand Rapids radar and Northern Michigan radar, NAM model 3-day snowfall forecast and GFS model 5-day snowfall forecast. Storm Total Snowfall will show the heaviest snow and Milwaukee looping radar. Regional radar and the Updated GRR NWS Short Term Discussion. More links: Northern Indiana radar, Chicago radar, Detroit radar and Milwaukee radar. Here’s College of DuPage Radar Map (pick any radar in the U.S.), College of DuPage Grand Rapids radar, the West Michigan Lightning Tracker, National Lightning Tracker, the local warning/advisory map and the National warning/watch/advisory map, a surface weather map. You can checkout the latest Grand Rapids NWS discussion, the Northern Indiana NWS discussion (includes the Michigan Counties that border Indiana), the discussion for Northern Lower Michigan, and Eastern Lower Michigan. Here’s the Spyglass Condos Weather Station the S. Haven GLERL station, the Muskegon GLERL station, the Grand Haven Steelheaders webcam and weather station, and the weather station at Holland State Park. Check out the Maranatha Webcam at Lake Michigan and links to webcams. Here’s the infrared satellite loop (night) and the visible satellite loop (daytime), Lake Michigan water temperatures (summer). Here’s recent storm reports from SW Michigan, Northern Michigan, NE Illinois, SE. Wisconsin, Upper Michigan and E. Michigan. Check out the wind and wave height at the South Mid-Lake Michigan Buoy (Apr. to Nov. only), the North Mid-Lake Michigan Buoy (Apr. to Nov. only), the buoy at Big Sable Point near Ludington and the weather station on the beach at St. Joseph. Here’s Michigan wind gusts from MesoWest, data from the MAWN agricultural weather stations and Weather Underground (data at the bottom from private weather stations). Here’s the Consumers Energy Power Outage Map, Here’s www.instantweathermaps.com.


Tropical Storm Ana

May 8th, 2015 at 12:36 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Other images: 5-Day track on3-Day track on3-Day track offInteractive [Image of 5-day forecast and coastal areas under a warning or a watch]        Tropical Storm Ana (AH-NA) has formed southeast of South Carolina.  Here’s a pic. of the storm from the Intl. Space Station.   Ana will drift slowly to the northwest as a tropical storm (it is not likely to become a hurricane) then head up the East Coast as a Tropical Depression.  It will produce heavy rain, gusty winds and some beach erosion as in the Carolinas over the next three days.  A Tropical Storm Watch has been posted from Edisto Beach SC to Cape Lookout NC.   Here’s the latest forecast discussion on Ana, the forecast advisory, the public advisory, expected wind speeds, Southeast Regional Radar, Wilmington NC local radar.   Here’s a regional infrared satellite loop and a visible loop to look at in the daytime hours and here’s the colorful funktop loopMore satellite loops.

Also:  Here’s the ACE Index, a measure of the number and strength of tropical storms and hurricanes.  The global index peaked 10 years ago and has been falling.  In the Atlantic/Caribbean/Gulf of Mexico the index also shows that the past couple years have been quiet.  I do expect the index to be higher, both in the Atlantic and globally in 2015.   The number of strong/violent tornadoes has also been decreasing.   Come back to this thread for the latest on Ana.

 


A Few Showers/T-Storms

May 7th, 2015 at 2:45 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

A few showers and t-storms have popped up, mainly along the lake-breeze from Van Buren Co. to northwest of Big Rapids and a couple light showers trying to develop near Lansing.  This is why you put a 20% chance of a shower/t-shower in the forecast.  We’ve had a handful of lightning strikes here in Kent Co.  Movement is to the NNE.  Low 80s in G.R., daily record 82 at the Muskegon Airport…Beach air temps at 4 pm:  64 Holland, 66 Muskegon, 68 S. Haven.  S. Haven camera – billowing cumulus to the east (right) and clear over the cold water (left).   More later.  Check out the links below.

This is going to be a first.  I’m doing the 5 pm news from the studio, Kyle does 5:30 while I walk downtown and right now we plan on doing the 6 pm weather hits from “somewhere” downtown.

Also:  Preliminary Oklahoma tornado ratings via @NWSNorman:  Oklahoma City: At least EF2, Bridge Creek: EF2,
Norman: EF1.  Latest observation from Childress, TX indicates 3.05″ of rain! Several feet of water was also reported across HWY 287.  As expected, the Texas drought continues to ease.

Here’s Grand Rapids radar and Northern Michigan radar, NAM model 3-day snowfall forecast and GFS model 5-day snowfall forecast. Storm Total Snowfall will show the heaviest snow and Milwaukee looping radar. Regional radar and the Updated GRR NWS Short Term Discussion. More links: Northern Indiana radar, Chicago radar, Detroit radar and Milwaukee radar. Here’s College of DuPage Radar Map (pick any radar in the U.S.), College of DuPage Grand Rapids radar, the West Michigan Lightning Tracker, National Lightning Tracker, the local warning/advisory map and the National warning/watch/advisory map, a surface weather map. You can checkout the latest Grand Rapids NWS discussion, the Northern Indiana NWS discussion (includes the Michigan Counties that border Indiana), the discussion for Northern Lower Michigan, and Eastern Lower Michigan. Here’s the Spyglass Condos Weather Station the S. Haven GLERL station, the Muskegon GLERL station, the Grand Haven Steelheaders webcam and weather station, and the weather station at Holland State Park. Check out the Maranatha Webcam at Lake Michigan and links to webcams. Here’s the infrared satellite loop (night) and the visible satellite loop (daytime), Lake Michigan water temperatures (summer). Here’s recent storm reports from SW Michigan, Northern Michigan, NE Illinois, SE. Wisconsin, Upper Michigan and E. Michigan. Check out the wind and wave height at the South Mid-Lake Michigan Buoy (Apr. to Nov. only), the North Mid-Lake Michigan Buoy (Apr. to Nov. only), the buoy at Big Sable Point near Ludington and the weather station on the beach at St. Joseph. Here’s Michigan wind gusts from MesoWest, data from the MAWN agricultural weather stations and Weather Underground (data at the bottom from private weather stations). Here’s the Consumers Energy Power Outage Map, Here’s www.instantweathermaps.com.


First 80 deg. of 2015

May 7th, 2015 at 3:49 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA    Some apricot blossoms here.  Today will be the first 80-degree day of the year for many of us, inc. G.R. and the warmest day since the first week of last September.  We’ll see partly to mostly sunny skies and a warm south wind.  The lake breeze may kick in this PM, esp. from Grand Haven north, and that will send beach temps. back to the low-mid 60s.  We’ll see several rounds of showers and storms starting late Thurs. night or Friday and continuing into Monday.   Here’s what the GRR NWS early am discussion said about Mon:  “THE THREAT FOR STRONG THUNDERSTORMS ON MONDAY IS LOOKING A LITTLE MORE LIKELY FROM THE LASTED MODEL RUN. IT NOW SEEMS THE EUROPEAN MODEL AND THE GFS MODEL ARE IN BETTER AGREEMENT AS TO HOW FAR NORTH THE SYSTEM ON MONDAY GETS. IT NOW APPEARS THE CLOSED UPPER LOW THAT GETS EJECTED FROM THE SOUTHWESTERN UNITED STATES BY THE NEXT UPSTREAM PACIFIC SYSTEM OVER THE WEEKEND WILL IN FACT MERGE WITH THE NORTHERN STREAM SYSTEM IN THE MONDAY TIME FRAME. THAT FAVORS A STRONGER SURFACE SYSTEM THAT WOULD TRACK FARTHER NORTH. THIS WOULD ALSO PUT SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN IN THE PRIME LOCATION FOR STRONGER STORMS MONDAY AFTERNOON, AS WE WOULD  BE IN THE WARM SECTOR OF THE SYSTEM DURING MAX HEATING. ADDED TO THAT IT WOULD SEEM BOTH THE GFS AND ECMWF 07/00Z RUNS SHOW SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN IN THE RIGHT ENTRANCE REGION OF 80 KNOT 300 MB JET SEGEMENT LATE MONDAY AFTERNOON. ADD TO THAT THE 50 KNOT LOW LEVEL JET OVER CENTRAL LOWER MICHIGAN AND 18Z AND 40 TO 50 KNOTS OF DEEP LAYER SHEAR…DEEP MOISTURE AND IT WOULD SEEM MORE THAN REASONABLE WE COULD BE LOOKING AT A SIGNIFICANT THUNDERSTORM EVENT.”         We’ll be tracking the system here on the blog.

I’ll be at Grace Bible College at Noon today for the National Day of Prayer – free lunch for everyone afterward.  Then into work.  The weather looks good for the Kinderparade in Holland at 2 pm.  Partly sunny and 75 to 80 degrees.   We’ll have a chance of showers or a thundershower during the River Bank Run Saturday morning with temps. early in the 60s, it’ll be rather humid with light winds.

Thurs. late AM -  Check out the Severe Weather Outlooks from the Storm Prediction Center.  Major outbreaks continue in the Southern Plains…Moderate Outlook on Saturday!   Lower Michigan in the Risk Area for next Monday.   gusts to 45 mph on buoys off the S. Carolina Coast - system should become Tropical Storm Ana.


50 Tornadoes in TX, OK, KS, NE

May 6th, 2015 at 6:30 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Oklahoma tornado   Latest: 12 Injured, Homes Destroyed As Tornadoes hit the Southern Plains Weds. PM.  The injuries were at a trailer park.   There’s more at KFOR.  Pics. there as well.  There was a tornado emergency for Norman OK.  Looks like some EF3 or even EF4 damage.   Here’s storm reports from OklahomaTornado damage at Bridge Creek OK.   Significant building damage, semi flipped.  Will Rogers Airport was evacuated to the pedestrian tunnel.   Very severe damage reported near HW 9 and I-44 near the spur.    A large, wedge tornado estimated to be half a mile wide hit near Jamestown, KS.  Confirmed tornado at Ruskin NE.  Pic. of the Newcastle OK tornado.   @UofOklahoma campus in get down cover up alert.  Tornado on the ground in Scandia KS.   Video of the Lincoln Co., Kansas tornado.  Tornado at Goddard KS – warning for Wichita KS.  Tornado near Mt. Hope KSBaseball-sized hail near Anadarko OK.  Tornado Cyril OK.  Tornado Stecker OK.  5:53pm CDT: Large multi-vortex #wedge tornado in progress NW of Belleville, KS.   HUGE wedge tornado near Hardy NE.    6 pm CT: NWS reports confirmed large and dangerous tornado in western Norman, OK, moving NE at 15 mph. *Particularly Dangerous Situation*   Bridge Creek tornado damage. A daycare here was hit. All children and adults are safe. They were in shelter.  Extensive damage in Amber OK.   Another big tornado near the KS/OK borderTornado damage in Roseland NEPic. of Halstead KS tornado.  Another pic. of the Halstead twisterFlooding in OK.  Another wedge tornado near Chickasha OK.   Tornado north of Vernon OK.    Confirmed tornado located near Norway, KS.   Over 8 inches of rain for the southern parts of OKC; flash flood emergency continues.    @reedtimmerTVN: First ever FLASH FLOOD EMERGENCY issued for OKC area! Historic flooding event underway.    Vehicles overturned, power lines down after possible tornado in southern Oklahoma City.   #Hail fell continuously at Will Rogers World Airport in #OKC for 67 minutes Weds. evening (6:58-8:05pm CDT).   Sheriff warned tigers, other wild animals possibly on the loose after possible tornado hits Tiger Safari in Tuttle, OK.   Update:  All animals are now accounted for.  Tornado at Aurora KS.   Oklahoma City Airport up to 6.85″ of rain in 6 hours!  They had a total of 7.10″ of rain yesterday!

Here’s current tornado watches from Nebraska to Texas.  SPC storm reports…up to 36 tornado reports as of 9:38 pm.  Convective outlooks show more severe weather for the Southern and Central Plains each of the next three days.   60% chance we’ll see the first tropical storm of the year develop off the S. Carolina Coast – would be called Ana.

Also, strong typhoon heading toward Luzon, Philippines.   Last 9 years of no major (Category 3 and higher) US hurricane landfalls  (Sandy was technically barely a hurricane when it came onshore).

It’s not all gloom and doom – here’s a couple nice shots of the rising moon.    UAH global temp for April = +0.07°C above climatological normal.