Bill Steffen

Showers/Chc. T-Storm South Thurs. AM

June 24th, 2015 at 7:38 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Central Great Lakes sector loop   Here’s regional and local radar.  The first batch of showers has been weakening west of Chicago.  There may be a shower or two left with that batch into Berrien Co. later this evening (after 9 pm), but most of us will stay dry through at least 2 am.

More storms are forming in Iowa, where there is a Tornado Watch until 3 am EDT.  The heavier storms should move ESE, missing Michigan.  Our best bet for rain will be south of G.R. around 5 to 9 am.  There is a chance of heavier rain and a thunderstorm along or south of I-94, but only a chance.  There’s also a chance that the bigger storms will all stay south in IL/IN.  Rain amounts diminish as you go north of I-94.   The Maranda Park Party at Lamar Park is still on – with free lunch for the kids – rides, games, giveaways, entertainment, ice cream, free stuff, prizes (a Chrome laptop, an RV vacation, tickets to Michigan’s Adventure and Cedar Point)…that’s Noon to 2 at Lamar Park in Wyoming.

Links: Here’s Grand Rapids radar and Northern Michigan radar, 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 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


Video of the Portland Tornado!

June 24th, 2015 at 1:47 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Portland Tornado drone   Portland tornado video HERE – this is from Grider-Agency in downtown Portland.  Note the tornado is rain-wrapped – very hard to see what’s coming when you are in heavy rain.  Note the last car that turns left, right into the tornado!  I’m guessing the camera is looking northeast  Maybe someone more familiar with Portland can verify that (I’ve driven down that road before).  Again, peak winds were 110 mph.  Fellow Storm Team 8 Meteorologist and pilot, Kyle Underwood took video along the tornado’s path.  You can see some of that here.   Here’s the story on 5 confirmed tornadoes in S. Michigan Monday PM.   Why there was not a tornado warning in effect for PortlandHow you can donate to help the relief effort in Portland.


Severe Weather Tonight – Update

June 24th, 2015 at 3:22 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

day1otlk_01009:45 pm update  -   This is the Severe Weather Outlook Area for  tonight.  Tthe Enhanced Outlook has been moved southwest, the rest hasn’t changed much.    The Slight Risk comes into Berrien Co. and the Marginal Risk is roughly south of a line from Holland to Coldwater.  An area of strong to severe thunderstorms will develop in the PM in Iowa and move into N. Illinois tonight.  We’ll be tracking how far north and east this area of storms will get late Weds. night into Thurs. AM.   The probabilities for tornadoes, wind and hail are at tabs here, along with the forecast discussion.  The chance of a tornado in Michigan with this system is extremely low, the chance of a severe hail report is low.  Of the severe parameters, the most significant chance would be wind damage and mainly in the SW Corner of the state (Berrien).  The better chance of wind damage will be eastern Iowa and northern Illinois.   SPC’s next update will be around 4 pm.

A greater concern is heavy rainfall.  The area along and north of I-94 has had heavy rain this month – a couple spots have already had a foot of rain this month.  Despite two dry days, the ground cannot hold a lot of moisture and rivers are already running high.  Sycamore Creek south of Lansing is at flood stage.   The crest on the Grand River is near Ionia – at 17 feet this is high, but still 4 ft. below flood stage.  The Grand River at Comstock Park is expected to peak at 10.8 feet late tomorrow (Thu.). Flood stage there is 12 feet.  Many inland lakes (Allegan/Barry Co.) have high water levels.

The evening will be partly cloudy and pleasant.  I don’t anticipate any rain in W. Michigan until after 1 am.  More in the thread below.


Storm Thursday AM?

June 24th, 2015 at 1:11 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

namgfs  Click on the images to enlarge.  This is the Tues. evening run of the NAM (left) and GFS (right) models valid for 8 am Thursday.  The NAM shows a strong thunderstorm complex right over West Michigan.  If you look at the run out to 84-hours…you can see the storms form in Iowa and far southern Minnesota and race eastward all the way out into the Atlantic Ocean.  The GFS (on the right) has a big bad blob of heavy storms over N. Illinois.  The biggest storms head ESE from there into Indiana and SW Ohio.  In either case, we get rain Thurs. AM.   The SPC convective outlooks have kept the severe storms south of Michigan, but they may have to come a touch farther north.     The European is more in line with the GFS keeping the strongest south of G.R.  The Euro. gives G.R. 0.13″ of rain Thursday AM, but it gives Kalamazoo 0.63″, Sturgis 0.67″, South Bend 0.89″ and Chicago 1.05″.    The European takes the 850 mb temp. down to +3C on 7/1.  That’s as cold as you will ever see in July.  If that were to be true…it’d probably give us upper 60s in the PM and upper 40s at night…more typical of Sept.

As of now, we count FIVE tornadoes in Michigan Monday PM/night…at Portland (high end EF1 – path map from NWS here), St. Clair Co. (EF0), Deckerville (EF1), Manchester (EF1), Birch Run (EF2 – 11.2 mile track), plus 90 mph straight-line winds in Jackson Co. and damage in Kalamazoo Co. and in Wyoming – Kent Co. and up to 5.5″ of rain.  Here’s more damage and rainfall reports from W. Michigan.  Lansing is already at 5th wettest June ever with 8.38″.  Long track EF3 tornado W and SW of Chicago.

Sunset – Washington Nationals ParkThunderstorm at Disneyworld.  669,000 without power in the Eastern U.S. due to storms Tuesday.  Dust from the Saharan Desert in Africa has come west to give spectacular sunsets in the southeastern U.SLook out below!!  Tropical Storm Kujira has delivered 13.3″ of rain to Dongfang, Hainan Island, China.  Check out the Northern Lights over Lake Superior Monday nightMore aurora picsCan Rocky be right?  That’s the Met Office talkin’.

 


A Cool Start to July

June 23rd, 2015 at 2:46 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

814temp.new 814prcp.new  This is the 8-14 day outlook for June 30 to July 6 from the Climate Prediction Center.  The Big Blue “B” for Below Average is smack dab over Lower Michigan on the temperature forecast map on the left.  I don’t have a temp. warmer than the mid 80s in the 8-day forecast – so it looks like we may get thru the first week of July without a 90-degree day.  The last time we hit 90 was Sept. 10, 2013.  On the right, the green means a greater than average chance of above average rainfall.  Note the ample rain across the “Corn Belt” from Nebraska and Kansas east to Ohio.

Also, the clouds blocked a good view of the Northern Lights.   Here’s the aurora viewed from space (ISS).    The auroras were visible throughout the Northern U.S. where it was clear and in fact all the way south to Georgia!  The kp-index is currently at 6 (at 12:45 pm Tues.), so we may be able to see them tonight.  Video of severe storm in southeast IowaReed’s pic. of the Sterling IL tornadoMammatus clouds at sunset over Wrigley Field in Chicago.

A few more rainfall totals:  5.50″ just NNE of Augusts, 4.05″ Bath, 3.85″ Leslie, 3.48″ Grand Ledge, 2.78″ Hopkins, 2.71″Eaton Rapids, 2.49″ S. Haven, 2.3″ Hastings…relatively minor wind damage at Cooper, Richland and Ross Township.  Also tree damage at Clare.   It looks like several tornadoes touched down in SE Michigan.  Survey teams are out today to confirm tornadoes at Millington, Decker and Manchester.  Here’s SE Michigan storm reports.  There was a possible tornado in the U.P. at Randvilleconfirmed tornadoes in NE Illinoissevere reports from N. Indiana.


Portland Tornado

June 23rd, 2015 at 2:04 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Portland 2   Portland 3Portland Tornado Path Click on the pictures to enlarge. On the left is the historic First Baptist Church minus most of their roof.  They were one of at least 3 churches to sustain damage.  Next a drone image of solid EF1 tornado damage with a roof off.  On the right is the tornado path from WNW to ESE to the north of I-96.  A preliminary assessment by the National Weather Service estimated the twister had 100 mph winds.  The path was approximately 4 miles with the maximim width was 50-100 yards.  The approximate time of the twister was 2:30 pm EDT.  More than 50 structures had significant damage.  Hundreds of trees were significantly damaged or destroyed.  some were uprooted or snapped off.    There was at least one injury (and possibly several others who self-treated).  Volunteers willing to help are urged to call city hall in Portland.


Tornado Watch Wrap-Up

June 22nd, 2015 at 9:26 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

WW0338 Probability   Severe T-Storm Warning  for Wayne Co. until 2:45 am and for Lenawee and Monroe Counties until 3:15 am.  Areal Flood Advisory for Calhoun, Eaton, Ingham and Jackson Co. until Noon.   Rain has pretty much ended in West Michigan..

State of Emergency declared in Portland.  Sirens sounded in Portland shortly before 10 pm Mon. evening, but no tornado.  Rainfall:  3.42″ Richland (Kalamazoo Co.), 2.84″ Bradley (E. Allegan Co.), 2.78″ Grand Jct. (Van Buren Co.), 2.75″ Lansing (up to 8.12″ for the month! – also a daily record for 6/22), 2.54″ Woodland (Barry Co.), 2.00″ Allegan, 1.57″ Brownlee Park (Calhoun Co.), 1.50″ Dorr, 1.44″ Lansing, 1.34″ Walker, 1.32″ Norton Shores, 1.31″ Battle Creek, 1.28″ Grandville, 1.10″ Downtown G.R., 1.10″ Saranac, 1.01″ Grand Rapids (airport), 0.39″ Holland.  Gust to 55 mph plus 2.5″ of rain at Bellevue (Eaton Co.), 65 mph winds Alamo, trees and wires down in Wyoming on Clay Ave., also in Concord, Spring Arbor and Sandstone (Jackson Co.), Albion, Pullman, Allegan, Onondaga (Ingham Co.).  Small hail fell in Dutton and Caledonia.

As of 2:15 am – a total of 13,086 Consumers Energy customers remained without power, including 2,890 in Jackson Co., 2,815 in Calhoun Co. and 1,761 in Kalamazoo County.


Watch Coming !!!

June 22nd, 2015 at 8:39 pm by under Bill's Blog, News, Weather

mcd1124   80% chance of a Tornado Watch soon!   SPC says:  “SUMMARY…TORNADO WATCH MAY BE REQUIRED BY 01Z FROM LOWER MI SWWD INTO NERN IL. DISCUSSION…LARGE SCALE ASCENT APPEARS TO BE INCREASING ACROSS LOWER MI PER EXPANDING ELEVATED CONVECTION THAT IS EVOLVING ATOP BOUNDARY LAYER STRATUS. WHILE 00Z SOUNDING AT DTX IS NOTABLY CAPPED…800MB TEMPERATURE IS 7C COOLER AT GRB IN CLOSER PROXIMITY TO SHORT-WAVE TROUGH. COOLING PROFILES ACROSS THIS REGION SHOULD CONTRIBUTE TO WEAKER INHIBITION OVER THE NEXT FEW HOURS AND ELEVATED CONVECTION IS EXPECTED TO STRENGTHEN AND NEAR-SFC BASED TSTMS WILL LIKELY EVOLVE WITH TIME…ESPECIALLY OVER SRN LOWER MI INTO NRN INDIANA. SHEAR PROFILES STRONGLY SUPPORT DEEP ROTATING UPDRAFTS AND GIVEN THE INSTABILITY OBSERVED SUPERCELLS SHOULD EVOLVE. ADDITIONALLY…DISCRETE SUPERCELL OVER NRN IL IS EXPECTED TO TRACK SEWD ALONG DECAYED OUTFLOW BOUNDARY TO THE SOUTH SIDE OF THE CHICAGO METRO AREA OVER THE NEXT FEW HOURS. THIS ACTIVITY COULD SPREAD INTO NWRN INDIANA LATER THIS EVENING.

from NWS :  – 900pm – We are on a conference call with @NWSSPC to coordinate a possible tornado watch in Southern Lower Michigan. #wmiwx #miwx

A heavy storm is over Gratiot Co.  Other showers and a couple of t-showers are southeast of a line from Muskegon to Mt. Pleasant.   No severe weather has been reported yet this evening.


Chance Evening Shower or Storm

June 22nd, 2015 at 7:07 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Central Great Lakes sector loop   First – how’s this for a severe weather report.  That’s a measured wind gust to 122 mph!

Showers and t-storms have developed from Alpena to G.R. with sprinkles down to Berrien Co.  Biggest storm is in eastern Montcalm Co.  into W/NW Gratiot Co.     Gale Warning for Lake Michigan until 5 am.  Dangerous rip and structural currents likely this evening/tonight.

NWS Grand Rapids@NWSGrandRapids 2 minutes ago    Preliminary rating for Portland, MI tornado: EF1, estimated winds around 100 mph.  Here’s the U.S. severe storm reports for today…quite a line from Iowa to Michigan.   Portland damage pics. here.   Best thunderstorm in a while at my house…had gusts to about 30-35, an inch of rain in less than 45 minutes and frequent lightning, including two very close cloud-to-ground strikes.

Links: Here’s Grand Rapids radar and Northern Michigan radar, 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 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


Severe T-Storm Watch has been cancelled

June 22nd, 2015 at 1:36 pm by under Bill's Blog, News, Weather

WW0333 Radar      Confirmed tornado touchdown in Portland around 2:40 pm, on the ground for approx. 10 minutes, preliminary EF1. with 100 mph winds.  Damage in the millions.   NWS has a survey team on the scene. WOOD has had 4 crews in Portland.  We just showed some amazing drone video.   Severe damage to the Goodwill Building (3 were trapped inside…they were uninjured), the Rite Aid and the First Baptist Church.  No serious injuries there, we are told, just a few (5) minor injuries.  Many trees toppled and uprooted.  Damage west of Portland, one  structure fire, 8-10 fire depts. have responded to the Portland tornado path.  Gas leaks have been taken care of.  Canines checking for any further victims.  “Stay out of the area!!” – police.

We have a Tornado Watch for much of eastern Iowa and northern Illinonis.  We have a Severe T-Storm Watch for N. Wisconsin and the SW U.P.   We also have a Severe T-Storm Watch for N. Ohio.  There was a Tornado Warning over by Cedar Point.   Check out the updated Severe Weather Outlook Area and Probabilities here.   The Enhanced Risk Area has been shifted down into Illnois and Indiana.  We remain in a Slight Risk Area for this Evening.   There is a Beach Hazard – high risk of rip currents and structural currents this evening.

At 5:30 pm, 6,101 Consumers Energy customers without power, including 829 in Kent Co. (mostly small outages in 16 separate counties).   Trees and wires were down at 36th and Clay in Wyoming.  Minor building damage, trees down at 44th and Clay.  Looks like a wet microburst.  1.1″ rain in 40 minutes in Ada.

Kyle and I are tracking the showers and storms in Wisconsin.  If those develop into storms (big “if”), we could see a shower or storm at the lakeshore by 9:30 pm and into G.R. around 10-10:15 pm.   Breezy at times…Muskegon had a wind gust to 39 mph.