Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Severe Thunderstorm At Douglas Airport Yesterday

Storms in southeast Arizona were briefly very strong late in the day. A severe thunderstorm hit the Douglas airport at 6:58 pm MST with gusts to 64 mph from the east. A snip of surface obs for Douglas (above) shows the storm observations and also that rainfall reached 0.46 inches.

The time-series of GPS-inferred PW on campus (below from NOAA ERSL GPS Meteorology page) shows that PW did fall off during the late afternoon, as the WRF model had predicted. However, moisture and CAPE remained to the south and east of Tucson. Outflows then jumped PW back up to nearly an inch during the night.

The IR satellite image above is from 8:00 pm last evening and shows MCS activity, mostly over Mexico, but with anvil clouds extending northward across southeast Arizona. Plot below (from Atmo and Vaisala) is for CG flashes detected through 1:00 am MST this morning. There were some particularly strong storms in southern Cochise County, and I suspect that there were more severe winds than the single report from the Douglas airport (Ft. Huachuca did report gusts to 48 mph, which is below official severe criteria).

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