Friday, May 16, 2014

Loooooong Range Outlook: May 17-June 15

Latest run of the experimental loooooooong range computer model is in.  I've had a chance to look at the data and make a few observations of what could come between May 17 and June 15.

One thing to remember, you should take all of the thoughts with a MAJOR grain of salt. This is only an experiemental computer model and not reality. You should not get too hung up on details just yet. Things can and likely will change.

Enough with the disclaimer, on to the observations:
  • Warm weather in southern United States May 21-23.
  • Upper-level low develops in western United States May 20.
  • Well above normal temperatures in the northern Plains and south-central Canada May 22-25.
  • Warm-up in southwest United States in through the northern Rockies (Idaho, western Montana) May 27-30.
  • Warm-up in Colorado through the central/northern Plains May 30-June 1.
  • East coast storm develops May 30-June 1.
  • Warm-up in Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Illinois and Oklahoma June 1-2.
  • Warm-up in Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia and North Carolina June 1-3.
  • Pacific storm develops and impacts the northwest United States June 2-5.
  • Warm-up in southern United States/central Plains/Missouri June 10-11.
  • Warm-up in desert southwest (California, Arizona, Utah, New Mexico) June 12-15.

Keep in mind, the model is just that. A computer model. The farther out the model looks, the higher the possible error rate. The key to look at this kind of data is not to look at specifics but instead trends and long wave patterns.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Winter Storm for Mother's Day

Still need to get mom a gift for Mother's Day?  Well, Mother Nature may be able to help you get something useful.  If you're in eastern Colorado you could get her a shovel.  She may need it Sunday and Monday.

An area of low pressure is moving through the Gulf of Alaska off the northwest coast of the United States.  (See the satellite loop below taken Friday morning.)

Computer models project the low/energy will move southeast in to the Rocky Mountains Saturday.  Once in the mountains, a surface low is expected to develop over southeast Colorado Saturday afternoon.  As the low moves east, cold air will begin to filter in from the north/northwest.

Almost all of the data suggests moisture will begin to fall in the central mountains of Colorado Saturday.  The moisture is expected to move east and southeast over eastern Colorado Sunday afternoon.  Both medium-range computer models, the GFS and European forecast agency's model, suggest that moisture will remain in place over eastern Colorado through mid-day Monday.

Overall, the computer models are very bullish with the amount of moisture falling from this system.  Here is a look at a 27-computer model average of how much moisture will fall for locations in southeast Colorado through 6pm Monday MT.
  • Colorado Springs: 0.70"
  • Monument Hill: 1.03"
  • La Junta: 0.48"
  • Lamar: 0.37"
  • Pueblo: 0.61"
Initially, moisture will likely fall as rain but in some locations it will change over to snow.  Places that get snow, could got a lot of snow.  Here is a look at the 27-computer model average of moisture that computer models project will fall as all snow through 6pm Monday MT.
  • Colorado Springs: 0.52"
  • Monument Hill: 0.76"
  • La Junta: 0.08"
  • Lamar: 0.01"
  • Pueblo: 0.13"
As you can see, data is suggesting higher amounts across El Paso County and north.  This also likely suggests higher snow amounts in the higher elevations west of I-25 (Teller/Fremont counties).

Keep in mind this is still a couple days away from happening.  Computer models will get a better handle on the storm, the amount of moisture and the timing once it gets better sampling over the land.
Winter Storm Watch (in blue) Saturday night
through Monday morning.
In the meantime, the National Weather Service in Pueblo has issued a Winter Storm Watch for areas west of I-25 Saturday night through Monday morning.  I'll be in throughout the weekend and will have further updates on KOAA-TV, on Twitter, and time permitting, my blog.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Looooong Ranger: May 10 - June 4

Looking over the latest run of the experimental loooooong range European forecast model.  Nothing too significant for the Midwest or Colorado.  There's a possibility of severe storms in May.  Here are a few observations...
  • Upper-level low develops in northern Plains May 12.
    • Cooler temps in Colorado.
    • Severe weather in central/southern Plains May 12.
    • Severe weather to Missouri, Arkansas and Illinois May 13.
  • Upper-level storm moves from Great Lakes to southeast United States May 16.
  • Cool and wet in Carolinas through May 23.
  • Warm-up in Colorado May 17-22.
  • Pacific storm develops off west coast May 21.  Moves onshore May 24.
  • Warm-up central United States May 24-28.
  • Warm-up in southeast United States May 26-30.
  • Warm-up Colorado/New Mexico June 1-4.
Keep in mind, the model is just that.  A computer model.  The farther out the model looks, the higher the error rate.  The key to looking at this kind of data is to not look at specifics but instead trends and long wave patterns.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

2014 Deaths from Tornadoes

Statistics are starting to come in from the deadly outbreak of severe weather this past week.

Through April 29 preliminary statistics from the Storm Prediction Center shows there have been 31 deaths from tornadoes in 2014.  All of the deaths occurred April 25-28.

The National Weather Service and Storm Prediction Center work to identify the location the deaths happened so as to get a better look at what may have occurred..  Homes, mobile homes, outdoors, permanent building/structure, vehicle and unknown.

Twenty-four of the 31 death locations have not been categorized yet.

Of the known death locations from tornadoes this year here is how the numbers break down.  57% of deaths have occurred in mobile homes.  28% of deaths have occurred in vehicles.  14% of deaths have occurred in homes.

A look at historical numbers for the previous 12 years shows:
  • 36% of tornado related deaths occurred in mobile homes.
  • 34% of tornado related deaths occurred in homes.
  • 11% of tornado related deaths occurred in permanent buildings/structures.
  • 8% of tornado related deaths occurred in vehicles.
  • 2% of tornado related deaths occurred outdoors.
On the surface it appears the threat in mobile home and homes is nearly identical.  However, that isn't quite the same.  According to the United States Census Bureau, there were 304.09-millions people living in the United States and 6.6% of the population were living in mobile homes.  That works out to around 20-million people.  Obviously, there are many more people living in non-mobile home domiciles.  Looking at it from this perspective would suggest there is a higher threat living in a mobile home versus non-mobile home location.