Posts Tagged ‘severe weather’

We are approaching the winter months, which can mean “anything goes” with Mother Nature – and that includes the return of severe weather potential.  While 2017 has been a quiet year on the severe weather front, the concern is the cold front that is projected to move through the afternoon hours.  The NWS has labeled this area at an enhanced risk, but we are on the fringes of that threat.

Weather often leads to infamous events happening here, especially between the months of November through May.  The biggest epic fails often happen during this time of the year – and more often than not on mornings that there is very favorable conditions of river fog.  In fact, in a few days we are approaching the 40th anniversary of one of the first epic fails that ever happened – on a very cold morning where conditions for river fog was allegedly favorable.


The NWS has set this area to Moderate Risk for severe weather as the main event is expected to roll through this area late this afternoon.  While this section of 270 is on the fringes of the Moderate Risk threat, the main threat of this outbreak being strong winds is a concern for the truckers that are using this road during the holiday weekend.

The admins think the worst will happen to the south and especially the southwest of here.  There is a preceding line forming that could affect the potency of the severe storms later this afternoon.

While a tornado watch is now out, it does not include this section of 270 at the time:

However, a severe storm watch was issued as the admins were writing this post:

Please stay weather aware this afternoon.

Although some of the previous models have put this section of 270 on the fringes of the severe weather threat, some of the latest model runs this morning is pointing to an enhanced threat.  While the TORCON is set at 4, the biggest risk is an outbreak consistent with an derecho:

This is the second possible severe weather outbreak in a week, and the first one the threat just missed to the east with the hail while the worst was about 75 miles south.

The risk forecast for Tuesday morning has been upgraded to medium as is may affect the morning peak. Stay weather aware as conditions may change in an instant.

UPDATE 2/28/17 at 11:30 – the NWS has upgraded the risk to medium

While the winter has been a flop in one term (not even 2 inches of snow for the entire season and maybe a total of four winter weather events – and the last one was over six weeks ago), the anything goes mentality means that severe weather can be a threat.  The NWS has put this area in the enhanced risk for Tuesday evening/Wednesday morning time window, and while that threat is still subject to change it is the first major weather threat since mid January.  Fearing weather complacency and the recent run on very poor form when it comes to that Clark Bridge commute (three major incidents in the past two weeks), the admins are somewhat concerned and has hit the peak periods for Tuesday afternoon/Wednesday morning as HIGH RISK.

The bottom line is that people need to remain weather aware on Tuesday evening/Wednesday morning time window.  While the admins do not expect a direct hit during the peak periods there could be a isolated shower popping in time for the Tuesday evening peak and leftover rain for Wednesday morning.

First the admins want to share a story too good to pass up that happened in the Pontoon Beach area this morning:



It had to happen when the account was not being monitored due to admins having other commitments that morning.

Now the news is that there is a slight risk for severe weather for this weekend as another weather system comes through.  The severe weather threat that was for Wednesday did not miss this section of 270 by much (one missed just to the north, another just to the southeast), so it is better to post about it and have it bust than not post about it and see that whole area get hammered (we are approaching a 10 year anniversary of an event that happened on a 0% chance day of severe weather).

Keep in mind that forecasts are subject to change, and with 2 of the admins being out of town this weekend, it is important for everyone to stay tuned to the weather forecasts on radio or TV.

Last night the admins were more interested in watching the hockey game than focusing on the severe weather threat, given the risk at Tuesday was 5% odds.  Well by midday on Tuesday, that risk grew into the 30% odds when a line of storms formed east of Kansas City, became severe, and started the march towards St. Louis. (Was at work at the time when that NWS update came and couldn’t make a post to this site prior to that round of storms hitting.)


However, that derecho that moved through just before the evening peak today is not the main event with this weather system, and there is a slight risk of severe weather for Wednesday.

The next round is lining up in eastern Kansas as of 19:00 and is expected to hit just before the morning peak on Wednesday:


That round may not be the main event of this system given it will roll in during the overnight hours.

In fact the severe weather threat for Wednesday remains in the slight risk:


Tomorrow is a good day to stay tuned for updates.

EDITORS NOTE: The information posted is as of 21:50 12/22/15.  This information may be obsolete by Wednesday morning.  Please check the Illinois Storm Alerts Facebook page frequently as the other admin will likely be posting on that account. (On Twitter, handle is @CycloneCowboys)  In addition, as of 1/1/16, we will be using new initials when making Facebook posts as another admin is likely going to be added.

Slight risk of severe weather (15% odds) is predicted for Wednesday afternoon, as temperatures are expected to be in the upper 60s and low 70s.  Warm temperatures and high humidity (dense fog is expected TONIGHT) in the dead of winter usually mean major severe weather outbreaks with very strong tornadoes and the TORCON has been set to a 6.  (The higher values are located just to the southeast, so it is likely the Paducah meteorologists will be checked more than the St. Louis or Central Illinois meteorologists.)



A TORCON of 6 means there is a 60% chance of a tornado developing within 50 miles.


Current Map of the severe weather risk. SUBJECT TO CHANGE


DENSE FOG is expected tonight, although the live feed cameras have not confirmed it yet. The worst of the fog is just to the east.

As a result, expect the next few days to be under some sort of travel advisory as rain is also expected this weekend when holiday traffic will be high. Please stay weather aware and keep tabs on the changing conditions.

Tomorrow is a good day to stay weather aware as severe weather is possible due to a strong cold front projected to move through the area during the late afternoon hours.  The NWS has issued wind advisories to the counties just to the north that will last through Thursday morning, so people driving high profile vehicles will need to take extra precautions for the next two days.

The breakdown:

  • The projected time the storms will hit will be around the worst time of the day – 16:00 to 19:00 time window.  It does not mean it will happen during this time, but the NWS has been sticking to this for the past 24 hours.  If the storms do hit at this time, it will hit during the evening peak periods.  The only saving grace is that tomorrow is a holiday and that will mean lighter than normal evening peak.
  • Neither admin can agree on where the worst of the severe weather will hit – it will be a wait and see approach.  I have been checking the meteorologists in both the St. Louis and Central Illinois markets and some are not agreeing with the SPC at all.
  • This outbreak can be something similar to November 2013 or it could bust entirely.  The November 2013 event missed a direct hit by a few miles – and caused one of the admins to lose a lot of sleep for nearly a week.
  • They will be quick hit severe storms – should they happen.  They will bring strong winds that can topple tractor-trailers and isolated short-track tornadoes.  Please pay attention to the skies.

The other admin will likely be monitoring this heavily, so it may be a good idea to follow his own Facebook page – we will only update this page if it is absolutely necessary.  If you are using twitter, his handle is @CycloneCowboys.

Although the admins expect the worst to happen to the northeast today, this section of 270 is under a enhanced risk with moderate risk just to the east.  This severe weather outlook is still subject to change, but the biggest risks will be strong winds and tornadoes.

The only good news is that the Mississippi River at Alton is expected to remain just below 29 feet, however that forecast is subject to change. The river came very close in flooding the southbound lanes of 67 on Saturday but had receded.