Archive for March, 2008

Waiting on a Jetstreak
March 31, 2008


Check out the light blue “egg” just pushing into southern New Mexico in the upper level chart above.  This Jetstreak will serve as a “kicker”, enhancing lift across our area as it approaches later in the day.  Plenty of moisture is in place with dewpoints in the upper 50s and low 60s.  We’re expecting the middle of the afternoon through the evening to be active as the boundary now just west of OK City moves closer.  Individual cells in advance of this will be closely watched for the potential of tornadoes.  As the frontal boundary moves closer, thunderstorm activity will likely congeal somewhat and transition into more of a line, presenting more of a damaging wind and hail threat.  Please have a severe weather safety plan set and be ready to act on it if need be. 


KOCO Live Streaming 11:30 PM Sunday
March 31, 2008

ok_city_tvs.gifA A couple of supercells just west of Oklahoma City have been carrying tornado warnings for the past several hours.  Check out the live streaming video.  We’ll be posting more shortly.

2:00 AM Update
March 30, 2008

A round of severe thunderstorms, mainly south of I-40 where conditions were ripe, have weakened substantially.  We’ll continue to see rain showers with embedded lighting and thunder throughout the overnight period which will likely continue off and on through most of Sunday.  By tomorrow evening a similar feature which we’ve seen tonight, a strengthening of low level winds, will help kick off another round of severe thunderstorms.  This activity coupled with stronger winds aloft at jetstream level has the potential to produce large hail, gusty winds and possibly an isolated tornado.  The tornado threat looks to ramp up by Monday evening in advance of the passing of a front.  Keep the umbrella handy and PLEASE remember that the number one weather related killer is not tornadoes or lightning, but rather floods!  Take another route if in the course of your travels you happen across flooded creeks, streams or rivers. 

An Active Period Ahead
March 30, 2008


Our dewpoints, presently in upper 40s, are slowly but surely coming up.  Dewpoints of 55F or better are usually a good indicator of sufficient moisture that can support supercells.  Overnight tonight as a weak frontal boundary translates northward, expect storms to develop.  Winds at some 5000′ will kick up to 40 mph or so with a nocturnal feature known as the Low Level Jet (LLJ).  This will help lift moist unstable air and produce the storms.  Lapse rates (the rate at which the temperature of atmosphere decreases with height) are steep over eastern OK and AR to some extent.  This will help aid in the development of hail, which is likely in stronger storms. Pea size will be most common.  As winds from the LLJ quiet down torwards daybreak, shower activity will be more common and the thunderstorm threat will diminish. 

Monday evening into Tuesday morning is looking like it could be quite active as some jetstream energy further adds to the threat of severe weather.  We’re monitoring developments closely.

Impressive Severe Weather Photos………
March 28, 2008

These photos were taken by two different people, at two different angles; however, they were both taken at College Place subdivision in Bentonville, AR. In the first photo you can see the mesocyclone, along with the wall cloud below it. The second shot was a close up view of the wall cloud.

No actual touchdown was reported in Benton county, however, there was a confirmed tornado spotted 1 mile north of Council Hill in Muskogee County.

This is a shot of the rotation near Centerton, AR. A different view from the ground up.

Hail was another issue with the storms that blew through Benton County. Here are some of the most impressive hail pictures. The first picture was hail that piled up to 7 inches near Bentonville, AR!

8:00 Pm Update
March 28, 2008

There have been many reports of hail up to the size of golf balls across Benton County and across much eastern OK. Trained storm spotters did report a tornado 1 mile north of Council Hill, in Muskogee County, OK.

The heaviest activity is now south of the River Valley area and moving to the ESE. We are monitoring all storms and will break in to programming as deemed necessary.

Thunderstorms Firing
March 27, 2008

We’ve got a springtime clash of the air masses happening right now. For most of the day the atmosphere was “capped”; a layer of warm air sat aloft and inhibited rising motion and convection. This “cap” is breaking! A thin line of shower activity along with some Strong to severe thunderstorms are developing. Storm motion is to the ESE at some 15 to 20 mph.

Note how there has been a collection of moisture along the boundary. This feature has been building over the past several hours.

Talk about a “thin” line! These storms likely are rather picturesque with basically no other clouds around in the vicinity of the action. We’ll be monitoring developments closely. The main threat with this late-day activity will be hail and damaging winds.

March 26, 2008

Here is a look at the precipitation forecast for Monday night into Tuesday morning. This is very far out but right now there could be a possibility for some strong thunderstorms. Some of these storms could produce some heavy rain, exactly what we don’t need. We will be watching this storm system very closely over the next several days, so keep it tuned to 4029tv and for the very latest.

Severe Weather Special………..
March 26, 2008

We want to invite all of you to watch our Storm Team Special this Thursday evening, at 6:30, only on 40/29. We’ll look at future radar technology, severe weather safety, and a special behind the scenes look at a severe weather event.

Windy Conditions…Here Comes the Moisture
March 25, 2008

Windy conditions dominated the weather headlines for Tuesday. The winds are also signalling the return of deeper moisture from the Gulf of Mexico; that moisture may materialize into thunderstorms for Thursday and Friday.

Look at the winds at 850 mb. These strong afternoon winds around 5,000 ft aloft helped to mix the atmosphere out, and produce the strong wind gusts at the surface. 850 mb winds also help to transport Gulf of Mexico moisture in the form of a low stratus deck. We’re already seeing this stratus move north throughout Texas.

Here’s the rule of thumb: you typically need winds over 35 knots out of the south to transport stratus across Oklahoma and Arkansas. We’ve seen that today, so expect stratus to move across our area late tonight and into Wednesday, creating a mostly cloudy sky.