68 F. average high on May 14.
50 F. high on May 14, 2016.
May15, 1998: Damaging tornadoes impact Minnesota. One tornado hits a flea market in Albany, killing one person and injuring 30 others. 102 homes are severely damaged in the northern Twin Cities due to another tornado.
May 15, 1969: Torrential rain occurs in Synnes Township, dumping 8 inches of rain in three hours.
Welcome to One of the Wetter Weeks of 2017
"Honey, I hope you never TIRE of me" I scribbled onto an overpriced Mother's Day card. My wife's big gift was 4 new tires, because nothing says I love you like good tread. Hey, cut me a break. Just trying to be practical. Roses and chocolate only go so far.
We live in a world of risk, but there are steps you can take to keep the odds in your favor. Good tires, to avoid hydroplaning on wet roads. All-wheel drive helps traction, year-round. NOAA Weather Radio. Staying indoors when thunder is grumbling overhead. And not driving into flooded roads.
Nearly 600 Americans have died in floods since 2011; 61 percent of these fatalities in vehicles. People consistently underestimate the depth of flood waters.
I could see some flash flooding later this week as a series of storms ripple along a slow-moving frontal boundary. The best chance of severe storms and hail comes Tuesday; heaviest rains come Wednesday, again Saturday. As much as 2-3 inches of rain may fall this week with highs in the 50s Friday into Sunday.
Atmospheric payback for a flawless Fishing Opener/Mother's Day weekend? You 'betcha.
Mom vs. Weather. Thanks to the Twin Cities National Weather Service for passing this along. Mom wins every time.
One of the Wetter Weeks of 2017. A series of storms rippling along a very slow-moving frontal boundary will keep heavy showers and T-storms in the forecast from tonight into next weekend. Amounts will be all over the map, but some 2-5" amounts can't be ruled out over the next 7 days. Graphic: NOAA.
Serious Puddles. No need to water the lawn anytime soon. NAM guidance is printing out some 2-4" rains for much of Minnesota by Thursday, as heavy thunderstorms redevelop over the same counties, a potential "train-echo" effect that may result in flash flooding for some counties by midweek. 84-hour rainfall potential: NOAA and Pivotalweather.com.
16-Day Rainfall Totals. Again, this is a model (GFS), which may be underestimating or overestimating rainfall amounts, but check out the 3-7" bulls-eye for the Upper Midwest and New England and the Northeast; more extreme rains possible for Texarkana late in the period. Gazing at the maps I don't think drought will be a glaring issue for most of the USA this year. GFS accumulated rainfall product: Pivotalweather.com.
7-Day Ensemble Forecast. NOAA is predicting a huge swath of 3-6" rains over the next 7 days from Texas northward to Minnesota and Wisconsin, capable of flash flooding and river flooding by next weekend.
Warm and Sticky, Then a Cooler Slap. Relative warmth hangs on into early Wednesday (80s possible Tuesday if we break out into the warm sector) but a stiff northeast breeze kicks in the latter half of the week and daytime highs may not get out of the 50s in the Twin Cities Thursday into Sunday. ECMWF guidance for the Twin Cities: WeatherBell.
Slow Warming in Time for Memorial Weekend. After a chilly relapse for the Plains and Upper Midwest later this week temperatures are forecast to mellow by the end of May as a ridge of high pressure builds across the USA; cool and showery weather still favored for parts of the western USA in 2 weeks.
Two Catastrophic Floods in Less Than Two Years Wasn't Just a Case of Bad Luck. Turns out it was a convergence of factors. Some perspective on recent flooding at St. Louis Post-Dispatch: "...Extreme bouts of precipitation don’t always translate to extreme floods, owing to a variety of factors such as soil moisture. Nonetheless, flood risk is rising with episodes of heavy rainfall becoming more common in the Midwest, says Ken Kunkel, a professor who researches extreme weather at North Carolina State University and is also involved with the National Climate Assessment. “Every decade has been higher than the previous decade in terms of these events,” Kunkel said. He says studies link more frequent downpours to rising global temperatures, which add more water vapor to the atmosphere, increasing the potential for precipitation whenever a storm system comes along. “They’ve got more fuel to work with, with more water vapor,” Kunkel said..."
Photo credit: David Carson, St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Large Floods Can Flood Aging Sewer Systems with Harmful Bacteria, Viruses. Well here's an implication of more heavy rain events I hadn't pondered before, courtesy of terradaily.com: "Researchers have discovered a worrying link between heavy rainfall and upticks in infections caused by bacteria and viruses carried by human waste. The correlation was identified in cities with aging sewer systems. Modern sewer systems separate human waste and storm runoff. But in many old sewer systems, a single pipe handles both. Environmental scientist Jyotsna Jagai has spent several years studying the human health risks associated with "combined sewers," which are found in more than 70 major American cities. In 2014, Jagai began comparing rainfall data with hospital records in Massachusetts between 2003 and 2007. In cities with combined sewers, Jagai found heavy rains led to an 13 percent increase in gastrointestinal disorders linked to human waste-borne bacteria and viruses..."
Last Friday Was 20th Anniversary of "Great Miami Tornado". Here's a video link and story from NBC 6 in South Florida: "Friday marks the 20th anniversary of the infamous twister known as the "Great Miami Tornado." The F1 tornado was eight miles long with winds between 100 to 120 mph when it struck on May 12, 1997..."
I was outside of the elementary school waiting to pick up my first grader, and just as the bell rang the sky started assaulting us with giant hail balls of doom. The hail storm came out of nowhere, and we are very thankful none of the kids had been released from school before the hail began falling. The Honda Odyssey is battered and broken, but the kids are all safe..."
“It gives them a chance to try them out, take a car for a test drive, actually practice plugging in the charger and see what that feels like and learn about all their options in a stress free environment...”Photo credit: "Inside the Go Forth Electric Showcase." (Image Credit: flickr via Zax9000).
Photo credit: "A slightly different perspective." (SpaceX).
TODAY: More clouds. Few T-storms nearby. Winds: SE 7-12. High: 79
MONDAY NIGHT: T-storms in the area. Low: 64
TUESDAY: Strong to severe T-storms. Steamy humidity levels. Winds: S 15-25. High: 85
WEDNESDAY: Rain may be heavy at times. Winds: NE 10-15. Wake-up: 63. High: 74
THURSDAY: Damp start, then clearing. Winds: NE 10-15. Wake-up: 51. High: 61
FRIDAY: Sunny start, showers arrive late. Winds: E 10-15. Wake-up: 46. High: 58
SATURDAY: More rain, few T-storms. Winds: E 10-15. Wake-up: 49. High: 59
SUNDAY: Still cool and foul. Chance of more light rain. Winds: NE 10-15. Wake-up: 47. High: 57
Photo credit: "Eileen DeDomenicis on the patio of her home on Arizona Avenue as a high tide and rain cause flooding in parts of Atlantic City." Credit: Ted Blanco/Climate Central.
Nash: Yes, Virginia the Threat of Climate Change is Real. Here's an excerpt of an Op-Ed that caught my eye in The News & Advance in Lynchburg, Virginia: "...Both Democrats and Republicans have a serious case of the slows, perhaps hoping the problem will just go away. Ask your political representatives, or candidates in the upcoming elections, why that is and what they’ll do about it. Compared to other states, we fail to push for rapid conversion to solar power and other renewable energy sources, aggressive fuel economy requirements for cars, and planning for the changes we will face. Already, Norfolk and Virginia Beach have chronic flooding — about half of it the result of sea level rise from record melting of the Earth’s icecaps. Our coastal waters will be about 1.5 feet higher sometime between 2030 and 2050. That’s enough to drown several billion dollars’ worth of commercial and residential real estate, dozens of miles of highways and rails, and a third of our port facilities..."
Study: Chicago's Forests Threatened by Climate Change. Minnesota is experiencing similar trends. Here's an excerpt from a story at Chicago Today, courtesy of WTTW-TV: "A first-of-its-kind study shows that forests in Chicago and surrounding areas face significant threats from climate change, with native trees especially vulnerable to increases in temperature, precipitation and other changes. In conducting the study, a team led by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service evaluated a 7-million-acre area covering parts of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin. Researchers documented past and current conditions, summarized potential impacts of climate change on urban forests and outlined strategies for municipalities, park districts and forest preserve districts to manage the changes. One of the study’s key findings was that 15 percent of tree species in the region have either moderately high or high vulnerability to climate change..."
Ocean Acidification. Not a theory, model or forecast, but a reality today. Graphic: Skeptical Science.
* thanks to AerisWeather modeling genius Patrick Francis for passing this post along.