Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Severe Thunderstorms To End June - II

The NWS current product map from yesterday afternoon was very colorful and included a Severe Thunderstorm Watch and Warning, among other products. The graphic below (from Atmo/Vaisala) shows detected CG flashes for yesterday through 1:00 am MST this morning. Another very active day, especially over south-central and west-central Arizona. The storm featured in post below left a distinct track across the metro area, stretching southwestward from the Catalinas. A very active storm area was off to the southwest of Tucson.

The SPC plot of severe thunderstorm reports for yesterday is shown above. Again, another very active day, especially for June. Looking at the specific reports for southeast Arizona, I found 7 reports of severe winds with 6 in Pima and 1 in Cochise Counties; and there were 12 reports of severe hail (1 inch or more in diameter) with 9 in Pima, 2 in Santa Cruz, and 1 in Cochise Counties.

The reports of severe hail during the past two days have been somewhat amazing - storms producing severe hail seem, at least in my experiences, to occur most often in the September transition period. Large hail at lower elevations during the core of summer is rare. I wonder if any readers have thoughts about what has caused the plethora of hail events the last two days - I did not feel that the soundings exhibited unusually large CAPE wrt to many summer severe storm days.

Finally, rainfall from the storms was again mostly light. Here at house the storm off the Catalinas left behind only 0.03" in the gauge - above is ALERT sector for the west metro area and the visually spectacular hailstorm did not produce much rain. However, heavy storms impacted the southwest sector of the network where several sites had over an inch of rain. For the entire network, 52 sites had rainfall, but only 13 sites had more than a quarter of an inch, with 5 of these having over an inch (see below).

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