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Tornado Watch until 11 PM - Includes Twin Cities Metro

Posted by: Paul Douglas Updated: August 24, 2014 - 3:50 PM

Tornado Watch until 11 PM. The new watch includes Brainerd, St. Cloud, Duluth and the Twin Cities. More details to come...


Slight Risk. NOAA SPC has much of Minnesota, including the Twin Cities, St. Cloud, Brainerd and Duluth in a slight risk area, meaning a high probability of storms capable of large (1"+) hail and damaging straight-line winds.


Latest Mesoscale Discussion. There's enough instability, low level moisture and wind shear for a squall line of severe storms to get going over the next few hours. Here's more detail from SPC:

PROBABILITY OF WATCH ISSUANCE...80 PERCENT

   SUMMARY...THE INITIATION OF ISOLATED TO WIDELY SCATTERED SUPERCELLS
   APPEARS INCREASINGLY LIKELY ACROSS WESTERN INTO CENTRAL MINNESOTA
   DURING THE 20-22Z TIME FRAME...WITH ACTIVITY DEVELOPING
   NORTHEASTWARD AND EASTWARD THROUGH THE REMAINDER OF THE AFTERNOON. 
   THIS WILL INCLUDE THE RISK FOR TORNADOES...PARTICULARLY NEAR/NORTH
   AND EAST OF THE BRAINERD AND ST. CLOUD AREAS LATE THIS AFTERNOON.

   DISCUSSION...BENEATH A POCKET OF MODESTLY STEEP MID-LEVEL LAPSE
   RATES...CAPE FOR MOIST BOUNDARY PARCELS /WITH SURFACE DEW POINTS
   AROUND 70F/ APPEARS TO BE INCREASING IN EXCESS OF 2000 J/KG ACROSS
   WESTERN ...CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN MINNESOTA.  WITH ADDITIONAL SURFACE
   HEATING...LARGE-SCALE ASCENT...DOWNSTREAM OF THE CLOSED LOW SLOWLY
   MIGRATING EAST NORTHEASTWARD INTO THE WESTERN DAKOTAS...IS EXPECTED
   TO CONTINUE TO ERODE LINGERING CONVECTIVE INHIBITION.  AND THE
   LATEST RAPID REFRESH/HIGH RESOLUTION RAPID REFRESH OUTPUT ARE
   INCREASINGLY SUGGESTIVE THAT THIS WILL CONTRIBUTE TO THE INITIATION
   OF ISOLATED TO WIDELY SCATTERED STORM DEVELOPMENT AS EARLY AS THE
   20-22Z TIME FRAME ACROSS WESTERN INTO CENTRAL MINNESOTA.

   AS INCREASINGLY CYCLONIC...SOUTHWESTERLY LOWER/MID TROPOSPHERIC FLOW
   STRENGTHENS TO 40-50 KTS...DEEP LAYER VERTICAL SHEAR SHOULD BE MORE
   THAN SUFFICIENT FOR SUPERCELLS...WHICH WILL TEND TO DEVELOP
   NORTHEAST/EASTWARD THROUGH THE REMAINDER OF THE AFTERNOON.  ALTHOUGH
   SOUTHERLY 850 MB FLOW IS SOMEWHAT MODEST IN STRENGTH /25-35
   KT/...AND MAY CONTINUE TO SLOWLY WEAKEN AND VEER WITH TIME...A
   BAROCLINIC ZONE ON THE WESTERN PERIPHERY OF COOLER...BUT
   MODIFYING...AIR /INFLUENCED BY LAKE SUPERIOR/ MAY CONTRIBUTE TO THE
   RISK FOR TORNADOES AS STORMS CROSS IT.  THIS THREAT SEEMS MOST
   LIKELY TO BECOME FOCUSED NEAR/NORTH AND EAST OF THE BRAINERD AND ST.
   CLOUD AREAS LATE THIS AFTERNOON.

Visible Cloud Loop. High-res 1 KM imagery as of 2:43 PM shows thunderstorms breaking through the cap; conditions ripe for a few lines of strong to severe storms into the evening hours. Stay alert and stay tuned for updates. Loop: HAMweather.

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