Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces us up, snow is exhilarating; there is really no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather. ~John Ruskin

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Superstorm of 1993 - "The Storm of the Century"

The Superstorm of 1993 was a storm that mystified our country; when it hit the south, it spawned thunderstorms and tornadoes; but, when it hit the northeast, it dumped record-breaking amounts of snow.
So what exactly was it?
It was, in essence, a large cyclone; it reached from the Gulf of Mexico all the way to New England--and even parts of Canada--at its largest.
It formed over the Gulf of Mexico on March 12, 1993, and rapidly intensified because of certain conditions that were already in place. As it moved toward the U.S., it pummeled the south with thunderstorms, strong winds, and even tornadoes. Most of the tornadoes spawned in Florida, causing about 12 deaths. When the storm reached northeastern states, it began to snow in record-breaking amounts. Meteorologists ascertain that it began to snow because the storm system encountered cold air. And the reason why it snowed so much was that the cyclone had an extremely low pressure (in fact, one of the lowest ever recorded). When a storm system has low pressure, cloud formation and precipitation normally ensue. The storm had also picked up lots of water as it moved from the gulf coast to the states. In fact, it dumped about 44 million acre-feet of water. In other words, it precipitated enough to fill 44 million football fields with one foot of water!
Perhaps the most chilling of all was the fact that this storm felt like a hurricane. As it dumped snow on the state's, wind speeds of up to 90 mph accompanied it.
All in all, the storm dumped about a foot or slightly more on cities like D.C., NYC, and Philadelphia; it caused 10 million people to lose electricity; it caused 270+ deaths; it did about $5.5 billion in damage.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Tornado A9

      Tornado A9 was an EF5 tornado that occurred on May 3rd, 1999 in Oklahoma. This tornado lasted for an hour and a half and travelled 38 miles. This tornado started in Chickasha and went through South Oklahoma city and the suburbs of Bridge Creek, Newcastle, Moore, Midwest city, and Del city. Tornado A9 is significant because it is the tornado with the highest wind speeds ever recorded globally. Tornado A9 reached up to 301 mph and resulted in $1 billion dollars worth of damage. After the hurricane, Oklahoma State Department of health recorded 36 direct fatalities and 5 indirect fatalities. An Indirect fatality was the people who died shortly before or after the storm due to accident or sickness. An estimated 583 people got injured, and 1,800 homes were destroyed and 2,500 homes were damaged. Due to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration an estimated of 600 lives were saved due to accurate warnings and the publics knowledge of tornado safety. EF5 damage was recorded in Moore, Oklahoma City, and Bridge Creek.

Photo of the Tornado A9 on May 3, 1999 near Bridge Creek, OK

William Grey

William Grey made his first forecast in 1984. He was a professor at Colorado State University where he was the head of the Tropical Meteorology Project. Unfortunately he died in 2016 at the age of 86. He forecasted until his death. In 1964 he received his Ph.D. University of Chicago, Dept. of Geophysical Sciences. In 1959 he received his M.S. University of Chicago, in Meteorology. In 1952 he received his B.A. George Washington University.

His contributions to meteorology include speaking at many national conventions and conferences such as the Heartland Institute's 7th International Conference on Climate Change. He helped the advancement of many key sciences such as the cumulus-convective scale, observational methodologies and techniques, climate change, tropical cyclogenesis, and track or motion. His seminal work includes many saying that he is the most famous hurricane expert ever and how he pioneered the science of hurricane forecasting. William Grey has been known to predict over 15 crucial hurricanes a year. In the 1970s he made fundamental contributions to knowledge of convective-larger scale interactions. His conceptual development of a seasonal genesis parameter also laid an important framework for both seasonal forecasting as well climate change studies on tropical cyclones. A primary area of Gray’s research in the 1970s was the interaction between 75 cumulonimbus convection and the surrounding circulation.

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