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A Starbucks is demolished after an apparent tornado touched down in Kokomo, Ind. The mayor says “no serious injuries”. There were a few minor injuries. The storm has been given a preliminary EF3 designation for winds of 111 to 135 mph. Over 31,000 are without power in Indiana this evening.
A strong tornado has destroyed a Starbucks in Kokomo, Indiana. A State of Emergency has been declared in Kokomo and Howard Co. Indiana. This is about 40 miles north of Indianapolis. No word on injuries as I write this.
At least EF2 damage – truck flipped, roof damage. Check out this video! Tornadoes were also reported at New Ross and Crawfordsville, Indiana and 1″ diameter hail was reported just northwest of Indianapolis. Check out the video of this large tornado near Ohio City, Ohio. Like the Michigan tornadoes last Saturday, some of these tornadoes came from storms with little to no lightning. Nine tornado warnings at the same time! More damage pics. from Kokomo. Confirmed tornado – Defiance OH – Tornado Emergency in Napolean OH.
The latest from WTHR, inc. pics. and video. More distant view of Indiana t-storms (cumulonimbus). Tornado video with large pieces of debris. Tornado near Young America, Indiana. Confirmed tornado Wetsel OH. Large tornado near Burlington IN. Tornado at Sharpsville IN. Golf course damage. (pics. from WISH-TV, WTRH-TV and Dennis Young).
The Indiana St. Police had 23 officers in Kokomo – sending another 24.
Today is now in 2nd place for most tornadoes in a single day in the U.S. in 2016 with 35. If the #35 holds up, it would tie for 2nd highest # of tornadoes on a single August day in the U.S. since records began in 1950.
There’s a meso-discussion out for E. Illinois and much of Indiana. That’s where the heavier storms are going to be this PM. The lakeshore areas…west of a line from Benton Harbor to Houghton Lake have been taken out of the Marginal Severe Outlook. Not much going on as I write this at 2:30 pm.
The Storm Prediction Center has extended the Marginal Risk Area (in dark green) to cover almost all of Lower Michigan – they say: “….NRN IL/NRN INDIANA INTO LOWER MI AND OH…AN EWD MOVING WEAK SHORT WAVE TROUGH IS EVIDENT IN SATELLITE IMAGERY OVER THE UPPER GREAT LAKES AREA WITH A POSSIBLE MCV OVER NWRN IL. DOWNSTREAM CONVECTION AND THE ASSOCIATED CLOUD SHIELD ARE SPREADING EWD AND SHOULD LIMIT THE MAGNITUDE OF DIURNAL HEATING ACROSS THIS AREA. A FEW STRONG STORMS MAY OCCUR THIS AFTERNOON INTO THE EVENING BUT THE OVERALL SEVERE THREAT WILL BE LIMITED BY MARGINAL INSTABILITY.”
It’s definitely going to rain today, with an area of rain and embedded t-storms moving in mainly for the midday period. Useful links below:
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 theinfrared 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.
A 6.2 magnitude eartquake hit Central Italy in the middle of the night. Last check around 2 pm was 159 fatalities – that number will increase. The mayor of Italian town of Accumoli says six people have been killed there. Fatalities are also reported in Amatrice. The quake was centered just southeast of the town of Norcia, about 70 miles north-northeast of Rome in the province of Rieti. The quake was approximately 6.3 miles under the earth’s surface. The quake was felt in Rome, where buildings shook for about 20 seconds at approx. 3:37 am local time and it was felt down to Naples and up to Bologna. The quake was felt strongly in Perugia, which has been a sister city of Grand Rapids MI since 1993. In 2009, a 6.3-magnitude earthquake in the Aquila region, which was also felt in Rome, left more than 300 dead. That earthquake was about 55 miles south of today’s earthquake There has been a 5.5 magnitude and a 4.6 magnitude aftershock. Now a 5.1 magnitude aftershock. The town of Amatrice reports extensive damage. Here’s a map of Amatrice. People are trapped under rubble in the town, where most of the power is out. One mayor said “half the town is gone” Minor damage in the Rome area. Damage pics., here and here. Look at the 2nd pic. here. 10 aftershocks in the first 2 hours after the quake. Live SkyNews. Clips from YouTube. Best pics. are on Italian TV. Here’s before and after the equake pics. Ironically, today is the anniversary of the equake and eruption of Mt.Vesuvius in Italy. Drone footage of earthquake damage.
We’ve also had a powerful magnitude 6.8 e-quake in Myanmar (Burma). While this was an even stronger earthquake than the one in Italy, this one was much deeper underground. Fatalities have been reported with this quake. Pic. here.
Also, a 6.0 equake off the coast of Indonesia. M 4.6 magnitude quake – 30km SSW of Palimbang, Philippines. For the first time in 3 years, lava from Kilauea has made it to the Pacific Ocean. The Northern Lights were out last night in parts of the Northern U.S.
The Severe Weather Outlook for Weds. PM/night has been expanded into Western Lower Michigan. SPC says: “SCATTERED STRONG TO SEVERE STORMS WIND AND HAIL ARE EXPECTED FROM NORTHEAST KANSAS INTO NORTHERN MISSOURI AND IOWA ON WEDNESDAY…WITH MORE ISOLATED SEVERE STORMS FROM THE TEXAS PANHANDLE NORTHEASTWARD TOWARD SOUTHERN LAKE MICHIGAN. ONGOING THUNDERSTORMS ARE EXPECTED WED MORNING ACROSS THE MID-MS VALLEY AND TOWARD SRN LAKE MI IN ASSOCIATION WITH A BROAD AREA OF WARM ADVECTION. THIS ACTIVITY IS NOT EXPECTED TO BE SEVERE…BUT A GRADUAL INCREASE IN STORM INTENSITY MAY OCCUR NEAR OUTFLOW BOUNDARIES WITH HEATING. WIND SHOULD BE THE MAIN THREAT IN THE LAKE MI AREA…BUT WEAKLY VEERING LOW-LEVEL WINDS MAY SUPPORT SOME SUPERCELL STRUCTURES WHICH WILL ENHANCE THE HAIL THREAT.”
Wednesday into very early Thursday is our only chance of rain the rest of this week. We’ll be dry today and from Thurs. PM to Saturday. In the meantime, there’s a Beach Hazards Statement for the lakeshore north of South Haven through late Weds. night for waves increasing to 3-5 feet. Remember on windy days, don’t swim near or jump off the piers and breakwaters. There’s also a Small Craft Advisory until Thurs. at 2 am.
Storms went across Upper Michigan and N. Lower Michigan overnight, producing hail at Ironwood, Wakefield, Iron Mt., Lake Gogebic, Merriweather, Harvey and Bergland. Hail up to golfball-size fell in the central U.P. Winds of 35-45 mph caused a few power outages in Benzie and Grand Traverse County. On the Marquette NWS facebook page you’ll find video of the tornado near Hermansville a couple weeks ago.
We keep monitoring the hurricane potential for Florida and the East Coast. The peak of the Hurricane Season is Sept. 10. Wow! Look at this lightning. Overnight t-storms hit the Las Vegas area. In the Atlantic, Fiona is just a depression and Gaston poses no threat to land at this time. It’s the next one that we’ll have to watch out for in Florida and the SE. That’ll be called Hermine.
For the latest from the National Weather Service on the tornadoes last Saturday go here. Click on the tabs (Overview, Bangor to Jamestown, Grandville-Wyoming, (NE) Grand Rapids and Orleans to Fenwick (Montcalm and Ionia Counties). We have at least four confirmed tornadoes plus straight-line winds of 100 mph (which was stronger than much of the tornado winds). Whether it’s straight-line winds or a tornado a 100-mph wind will do similar damage. We have to keep in mind that strong winds from a thunderstorm can be just as destructive as the winds of a smaller tornado. NWS damage surveys and assessment will continue today (Tue.).
Noteworthy: Michigan gets an average of 16 tornadoes per year. Most of them are relatively small and short-lived. We haven’t had an EF4 or EF5 tornado in Michigan since 1977. We had no fatalities and NO INJURIES on Saturday! With all the trees that came down and the limbs that were flying through the air, on a summer Saturday and mid-afternoon, with a lot of people in cars and camping – we were very lucky (blessed). However, it’s an indication that people know what to do in a tornado/severe storm situation and they take action. This was true for the Dexter Tornado back in March 2012. That was an EF3 with winds approaching 140 mph – and no serious injuries!
Yes, there was no watch in effect Saturday. The watches are issued by the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma. This was not a day when we were going to get an EF4 or EF5 – we weren’t going to get the giant supercells that often from the monster twisters in the Plains or down South. However, they did not anticipate a tornado outbreak like this, albeit with relatively small tornadoes. The Storm Reports map here shows 16 tornadoes reported on Saturday. Right now they have 8 in MI, 4 in OH, 3 in eastern IN and one in KY. That’s a preliminary count and that number will be adjusted as damage surveys are completed. I’m sure the majority of these will be rated EF0 and EF1. SPC issued a midday updated and took the threat level down from Slight to Marginal for much of Lower Michigan (due to the fact we weren’t getting sunshine and with the solid cloud cover, the air didn’t warm past 78 in G.R. Usually, SPC does a superb job with tornado and severe t-storm watches. The local National Weather Service did an excellent job of getting the warnings out. The sirens were sounding well in advance of the damage in Kent Co., where we had the highest population density. I’m actually surprised we didn’t have at least some tree damage in SE Barry Co. from the rotation that passed over that area. Part of this is timing…a line of t-showers can form…roll along…all of a sudden for an hour or two (usually in the PM, but occasionally at night) it’ll become active – then return to just garden-variety t-showers.
The Rubicon group is coming to Michigan to help with the clean-up…the H.U.G.S. ranch sustained significant damage and is accepting donations to rebuild and cover clean-up costs. As of 3 am (Tue.) there are still 355 customers without power in Allegan Co. and just one customer without power in Kent Co…wonder who that is?
The latest from the National Weather Service on Saturday’s Storms:
Public Information Statement National Weather Service Grand Rapids MI 429 PM EDT MON AUG 22 2016 ...STRAIGHT LINE WINDS IN KENT COUNTY FROM AUGUST 20TH STORMS... In addition to an EF-0 tornado that moved through portions of Grandville and Wyoming on August 20th...National Weather Service damage surveys identified areas of straight line wind damage in Kent County from August 20th storms. .Estimated winds of around 100 mph...equivalent to EF-1 wind damage A small area of wind damage caused by estimated 100 mph winds was found near M6 between Ivanrest Ave SW and Kenowa Avenue SW. South of M6...Ironwood Golf Course saw the worst of the damage losing a significant number of large trees. North of M6 just west of Wilson Ave SW along 64th Street...a number of very large trees were uprooted causing significant damage to one home. .Estimated winds of 65 to 75 mph...equivalent to EF-0 wind damage A long stretch of straight line wind damage occurred from just northeast of the intersection of M6 and Wilson Avenue SW through East Grand Rapids. Notable locations that were impacted by straight line winds include Maple Hill Golf Course and Pinery Park. This damage was mainly to trees with a few fallen trees resulting in damage to homes.
Public Information Statement National Weather Service Grand Rapids MI 425 PM EDT MON AUG 22 2016 ...NWS DAMAGE SURVEY FOR 08/20/2016 EF-0 TORNADO IN KENT COUNTY... An EF-0 tornado touched down near 44th Street and Ivanrest Ave SW in Grandville Michigan on Saturday August 20th and continued on the ground along a varying path through Grandville and Wyoming before lifting near the intersection of Nagel Avenue SW and Chicago Drive SW. Though the tornado remained west of US-131...it did zig zag across a number of major roads/intersections in the Grand Rapids metro area including... ...Ivanrest Avenue SW just north of Rivertown Parkway... ...The intersection of Byron Center Ave SW and 36th Street... ...28th Street SW near Sharon Avenue SW... ...Porter Street SW near Boulevard Drive SW... ...Burlingame Avenue SW just north of Burton Street SW... Along the path...hundreds of trees were damaged or knocked over resulting in tens of thousands of power outages. Many homes and a number of vehicles were damaged from fallen trees. A couple notable locations the tornado moved through include the Wyoming Middle School football field where a set of football field goal posts were bent by soccer goals...and Battjes Park and Prairie Park where a number of trees were damaged or uprooted. Straight line winds also occurred in Kent County to the east of the path of the tornado. These straight line winds occurred mainly from near the intersection of M6 and Wilson Avenue SW through East Grand Rapids. Notable locations that were impacted by straight line winds include Ironwood Golf Course, Maple Hill Golf Course and Pinery Park. Rating: EF-0 Estimated peak wind: 80 to 85 mph Path length: Around 5.25 miles Path width: Maximum 200 to 250 yards Fatalities: 0 Injuries: 0 Start date: Aug 20 2016 Start time: Approximately 234pm Start location: Near the intersection of Ivanrest Ave SW and Rivertown Parkway End date: Aug 20 2016 End time: Approximately 244pm End location: Near the intersection of Nagel Ave SW and Chicago Drive SW EF Scale: The Enhanced Fujita Scale Classifies Tornadoes into the following categories. EF0...Weak......65 to 85 mph EF1...Weak......86 to 110 mph EF2...Strong....111 to 135 mph EF3...Strong....136 to 165 mph EF4...Violent...+166 NOTE: The information in this statement is PRELIMINARY and subject to change pending final review of the event and publication in NWS Storm Data.
This is the Severe Weather Risk for Weds. PM. Showers and storms are likely between Weds. PM and Thurs. AM – this is probably our only chance of rain the rest of the week. However, the chance of rain in this time period is very good (90%) with the best chance coming from late Weds. to early Thurs. The Storm Prediction Center has W. Michigan in the General T-Storm Outlook with the Marginal Risk knocking on our doorstep. I’ll guess that the Marginal Risk Area will have to be expanded into West Michigan, but at this point that’s just a guess. At this point the most likely outcome is no significant severe weather, thought we could get some heavy rain.
In the meantime, we’ll develop scattered cumulus clouds during the late morning – temperatures will be comfortably in the 70s today, low 80s tomorrow, gentle winds – two fine summer days to kick off the Hudsonville Fair. There’s a nice free jazz concert at Ah Anab Awen Park (Ford Museum downtown) this evening from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm.
There are still 1,540 Consumers Energy customers without power from Saturday’s tornadoes (down from 31,000), including 1,171 in Kent County. Consumers had to replace about 55 utility poles and that takes some time, but most are back on. Anyone interested in putting together a fundraiser to replace trees in West Michigan (maybe targeted for in Palmer Park in Wyoming)? Here’s some resources for residents of Wyoming. Thanks to the city of Wyoming, the Red Cross, Marge’s Donut Den and all those who are helping.
Thanks to WOOD radio (AM 1300, FM106.9) for bringing me on to talk about the Saturday twister’s. No injuries! However, there was one lightning fatality (21-year old woman) in Presque Isle, and one drowning Sunday in Lake Michigan near the Pigeon Lake Channel. Here’s storm damage photos.
Public Information Statement National Weather Service Grand Rapids MI 714 PM EDT SUN AUG 21 2016 ...NWS DAMAGE SURVEY FOR 08/20/2016 BRIEF EF-0 TORNADO IN KENT COUNTY... A brief tornado touched down in Kent County near Perkins Avenue NE between Leonard Street NE and Knapp Street NE. Tree damage and some property damage from fallen trees occurred as the result of this brief tornado. There is preliminary evidence of additional tornado damage in Kent County that was not the result of this tornado. A NWS storm survey team will continue investigation on Monday and provide details on the additional tornado damage when the survey is complete. Rating: EF-0 Estimated peak wind: Between 70 and 80 mph Path length: Around 0.75 miles Path width: Approximately 25 to 50 yards Fatalities: 0 Injuries: 0 Start date: Aug 20 2016 Start time: Approximately 250pm Start location: Around 3 miles Northeast of Downtown Grand Rapids End date: Aug 20 2016 End time: Approximately 252pm End location: Around 3 miles Northeast of Downtown Grand Rapids EF Scale: The Enhanced Fujita Scale Classifies Tornadoes into the following categories. EF0...Weak......65 to 85 mph EF1...Weak......86 to 110 mph EF2...Strong....111 to 135 mph EF3...Strong....136 to 165 mph EF4...Violent...166 To 200 mph EF5...Violent...>200 mph NOTE: The information in this statement is PRELIMINARY and subject to change pending final review of the event and publication in NWS Storm Data. $$
Here’s the latest from the National Weather Service:
Public Information Statement National Weather Service Grand Rapids MI
640 PM EDT SUN AUG 21 2016…NWS tornado surveys will continue Monday…
Investigation of Saturday’s tornadoes from Van Buren Kent County will continue on Monday. Survey teams have confirmed tornado damage did occur in Van Buren, Allegan SE Ottawa, and Kent Counties. However, surveys need to be completed before more detailed information can be provided. There is preliminary evidence of EF-1 damage in Van Buren, Allegan, and Ottawa Counties, and EF-0 damage in Kent County. Survey teams will provide additional information Monday.
Bill adds: The NWS has a lot of territory to cover as they look at damage in at least 6 counties. EF-1 damage is 86 mph to 110 mph and EF0 is 65-85 mph. An EF-1 tornado causes moderate damage. Roofs sustain some damage; mobile homes can be overturned or badly damaged; loss of exterior doors; windows and other glass broken, large trees uprooted or snapped. An EF0 tornado causes (relatively) light damage. Shingles can be blown off roofs; some damage to gutters or siding is possible; large branches broken off trees; shallow-rooted trees pushed over.
The best news is no injuries. Most people had ample time to make a decision as to what to do during the storm. Sirens sounded well ahead of the tornado in Kent County. Most people know what to do during a tornado situation and take proper action. These tornadoes were often rain-wrapped and difficult to see until the twister was knocking on your door. The tornadoes came in the middle of a summer Saturday afternoon, when many people are outdoors, driving, camping. Fortunately, no one was hurt by a falling tree or limb.
We don’t know the path length…whether this was one tornado or several spawned by the same storm. We appear to have a long track of damage. By comparison, the Kalamazoo Tornado of May 13, 1980 was 11 miles, the Palm Sunday Tornado of April 11, 1965 was 20.6 miles (through Ottawa and Kent County) and the Hudsonville-Standale Tornado of April 3, 1956 was at least 48 miles. (map above from CIMMS/NSSL).
Here’s a pretty shot from GLERL at the Muskegon Channel. I think this has been a great summer. We’ve had many warm days, hardly any really cool days, hardly any super-hot days and overall very little severe weather compared to average (Saturday’s tornadoes being the exception). It’s been sunnier than average and we’ve had quite a few days with light winds. In Grand Rapids, the hottest temp. this summer has been 93 and the last time we had a low temp. below 50 was June 9. We’ve had above average rainfall in July and August and overall crops are in very good condition over most of the Great Lakes (and Corn Belt). The percent of possible sunshine in G. R. was 73% in June, 74% in July and from August 1-18 it was 82%.
The above average sunshine and light winds (until this weekend – average wind speed in G.R. for August 1-18 was just 6 mph) have helped allow the surface water at Lake Michigan to warm up to the warmest readings of the decade so far. The water temp. of the mid-lake Michigan buoy west of Holland (east of Milwaukee) was 77 early Saturday morning. The north mid-Lake Michigan buoy had a temp. of 71.
The water level of Lake Michigan/Huron is down 1″ in the last month, up 3″ in the last year and is now 10″ above the August average. Lake Superior is unchanged in the last month, up one inch in the last year and is 7″ above the August average. Lake Erie is down 4″ in the last month, down 6″ in the last year, but is still 8″ above the century August average. Lake Ontario is down 4″ in the last month, down 11″ in the last year and is now 2″ below the August average level. The weather has been drier in western N.Y. Lake St. Clair is unchanged in the last month, up one inch in the last year and is 13″ above the August average level. Outflow from Lake Superior down the St. Mary’s River to Lake Superior will be near to slightly above average through late summer. Flow from Lake Huron to Lake Erie through the St. Clair and Detroit Rivers will stay at above average flow, as will the Niagara River from Lake Erie into Lake Ontario. The flow out of Lake Ontario down the St. Lawrence River is expected to be near average flow.
In case you didn’t see this…the second oldest shipwreck in the Great Lakes has been found in Lake Ontario, dating back to 1803. The 53-foot-long ship was carrying at least five people and a cargo of merchandise, including goods from India, when it set sail from Kingston, Ontario, for its homeport of Niagara, Ontario, on Nov. 6, 1803. The vessel was caught in a fierce November storm and sank. (pic. from WIVB).
Also: Cool video here: From Montreal to Minnesota. 1.2 million dollar upgrade for Michigan fish hatchery. Tall ships attact thousands…and a 61-foot duck. Beachgoer finds ominous object. Swimmer to try 120-mile continuous swim in Lake Michigan. Michigan fish hatcheries producing “significantly more” fish this year than last year. Kayaking all the way around Lake Superior. Deadly currents, why they hit the Great Lakes. Four lighthouses for sale. Looking for moose. Nearly 8 million more to clean up Muskegon Lake. Research vessel stops in Holland. Weather buoys on the Great Lakes.
Trees fell on this house at 64th and Wilson in SW Kent Co. Team coverage of the tornado outbreak and the weather for the coming week. This Sunday morning, Matt and Terri will be in for Daybreak (5 to 8 am) and Kyle and I will be here Sunday PM/Night. Kyle will have drone footage from the hardest hit areas. First, here’s a preliminary list of severe reports from Sat. An EF-1 tornado has been confirmed – an 8-mile path from N. Ionia to S. Montcalm County. National Weather Service survey teams will be out Sunday – they have a lot of ground to cover. It’s pretty obvious that we have tornado damage from Van Buren to Kent County. It may not be continuous and there may be some adjacent t-storm wind damage.
Here’s U.S. Severe Weather Reports from Saturday. They list 10 tornadoes in Michigan, NE Indiana and W. Ohio. At least a couple of these are duplicates. There were no watches issued from the Storm Prediction Center. There were good warnings issued from the local NWS in G.R. that gave a nice lead time. It’s awesome that there were no injuries. We had a long-track tornado in the middle of a Saturday afternoon in summer. It shows most people know what to do when there is a tornado warning. The storms were not big enough to spin off an EF4 or EF5, which would have been trouble going through a populated area, but damage is going to be in the millions of dollars from today’s twisters. In terms of area hit, this could be the worst tornado day for W. Michigan since the Kalamazoo tornado of 5/13/80. There aren’t many pics. of the tornado. It was rain-wrapped for much of it’s path and hard to see until the wind was on top of you. My middle daughter (#2) was in the tornado! She was in a condo on Byron Center south of 28th St. There were many trees down in her neighborhood.
Rainfall continues to add up here in W. Michigan. Our observer in Paw Paw had another 1.6″ of rain Saturday. He’s up to 13.50″ for the month. Grand Rapids had 0.65″ officially (or should I say “o-fish-ally”) for a total of 6.54″ for the month, all of that in the last 9 days. The record monthly rainfall for G.R. for August is 8.46″ in 1987. We’re already in 8th place. Battle Creek picked up 1/3rd inch to bring their monthly total to 7.47″. Kalamazoo got an even 1″ for a total of 6.54″ for August. Muskegon got 0.62″ and is now up to 1.62″ for August, much less than most fo the area. Other Saturday rainfall totals: 1.13″ Holland, 1.28″ Grand Junction, 1.41″ Fennville, 0.89″ Hastings, 0.93″ S. Haven.
The average high temperature has now dropped 3 degrees…from 83 in late July to 80 today. The hurricance season has been relatively quiet in the Atlantic…but it’s going to pick up soon.
We may a tropical storm/hurricane close to the East Coast by the end of the month. Water temps. are warm both in the Gulf of Mexico and along the East Coast, so there is fuel for tropical systems this late summer/fall. Tropical Storm Fiona should continue to wander around the Central Atlantic for another week…might come close to Bermuda, but no threat to the U.S.
There’s a Beach Hazards Statement for Lake Michigan through Sunday night for dangerous rip currents and structural currents. Don’t jump off or swim near piers and breakwaters on windy days like this. Dangerous currents pushing out toward the open lake develop on the windward side of the piers and breakwaters. Small Craft Advisories will remain in effect until 1 am Monday. Here’s Lake Michigan water temperatures and flag colors. The water temp. of Reeds Lake fell to 77 Sat. evening and may fall another couple of degrees today. The wind at the Muskegon Beach gusted as high as 38 mph overnight and the wind was a steady 26 mph at 1:45 am. The S. Haven beach weather station showed a wind of 30 mph.
A National Weather Service Survey team has determined that an EF1 tornado, with winds of 90 mph moved from SSW to NNE through N Ionia and S. Montcalm County. The twister was on the ground for 8 miles, starting about 1/2 mile east of the town of Orleans, crossing M-44 and M-66, ending about 3.5 miles southeast of Sheridan. It crossed the small town areas of Shiloh and Fenwick. The tornado was 100 yards wide (as wide as a football field is long). It downed large trees and and thre was damage to a house and garage. The twister was on the ground from 3:10 pm to 3:25 pm.
This may be the most signficant tornado day in W. Michigan since the Kalamazoo Tornado of 5/13/80. We have perhaps several long-track tornado paths – looks like anywhere from EF0 to EF2 damage. See track map above. Thousands of trees and wires have been downed across the area. There appears to be a not quite continuous tree damage from one tornado through parts of 4 counties (Van Buren, Allegan, the SE corner of Ottawa Co. and into Kent Co.) . (image from CIMMS-NSSL)
Timing: From Bangor to Grand Junction 1 pm to 1:30 pm. From SE of Fennville to E. of Hamilton 1:37 pm to 2:04 pm. From S. of Jamestown up into G.R. 2:18 pm to 3:03 pm and east of Belding from 3:16 pm to 3:21 pm.
As of 12:40 am: Consumers Energy reports over 20,777 customers without power, inc. 25,638 in Kent Co. (9.4% of the country). Consumers said there are over 400 lines down in Kent Co. alone. (pic. is damage near Bangor).
I’ve had several emails asking why we didn’t get a Tornado Watch. TV stations don’t issue watches or warnings. Tornado and Severe T-Storm Watches are issued by the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma. Warnings are issued by the local National Weather Service. For most of us, that’s the office at the Ford Airport in Grand Rapids (the Michigan counties that border Indiana receive warnings from the National Weather Service Office in North Webster, Indiana). Their watches are excellent the vast majority of the time. I was told by a lead forecaster there once that the Grand Rapids, Michigan CWA (County Warning Area) was one of the 10 hardest CWAs for forecasting severe weather in the U.S. Many of our tornadoes are small, short-lived and often rain-wrapped, like today’s tornadoes…hard to see visually, and hard to see on radar. The local NWS did an excellent job of issuing warnings. Hats off to Cort, Ernie, Jim and everyone at the GRR NWS for the timely warnings and great information during today’s tornado event.
Today’s tornados hit Wyoming especially hard leaving a swath of destruction throughout the city. One of the hardest hit parts of Wyoming was the city’s Pinery Park. The strong winds went from one end of the 75-acre park to the other downing an uncountable number of old growth trees. This comes only two years after Ideal Park, an older, 91-acre park, was devastated by a tornado. Pinery Park has been closed as the clean-up continues.
Confirmed tornado…moving thru immediate G.R. area Significant Damage has been reported. Damage in Bangor, ambulance on standby at Harding Supermarket in Bangor. Command center set up at Bangor H.S. To report damage or if you saw or are seeing the tornado – call 1-800-8-WOODTV or email newsroom@woodtv. We’ll take your pics. and videos if you are safe to send them. Columbia Twp. Hall roof ripped off…911 deluged with calls. This is a significant tornado heading right into the G.R. metro area!! Long-track tornado from Van Buren Co. to city of G.R. Many trees down. Rotation now near 4 mile road NE – second tornado signature in W Eaton Co. My daughter’s condo was hit along the Grandville – Wyoming border.