Strong Storms Rumbling Through Metro (wind gusts to 50 - small hail and urban flooding risk)
September 19, 2013 — 11:36am
Much-Needed Lawn Watering. NWS Doppler radar at 11:04 AM shows a line of strong storms pushing across the metro, whipping up 50 mph winds and small pea-size hail. The most severe storms are over the far north metro, NWS Doppler estimating 2.75" diameter hail east of Cambridge. The severe threat will shift into southeastern Minnesota and much of Wisconsin into the afternoon hours. Remember that a Severe Storm Watch is in effect until 4 PM, including the metro, but the severe threat for the immediate Twin Cities should ease after noon or 1 pm as the most unstable conditions shift south and east of the metro.
Paul Douglas is a nationally respected meteorologist with 35 years of television and radio experience. A serial entrepreneur, Douglas is Senior Meteorologist and Founder of Media Logic Group. Douglas and a team of meteorologists, engineers and developers provide weather services for various media at Broadcast Weather, high-tech alerting and briefing services for companies via Alerts Broadcaster and weather data, apps and API’s from Aeris Weather. His speaking engagements take him around the Midwest with a message of continuous experimentation and reinvention, no matter what business you’re in. He is the public face of “SAVE”, Suicide Awareness, Voices of Education, based in Bloomington. Send Paul a question.
Shocking: meteorologists actually have something to do, which may be an anomaly in this El Nino-warmed winter that's setting up. A surge of southern moisture will spark steady, slushy snow - resembling something we might experience in March vs. December. By the time the flakes stop flying late Tuesday much of the area will have 5-8", a few towns may boast up to 10" of heavy, wet snow. Hey, it's winter in Minnesota. It's supposed to snow!
Well this is unusual: a risk of an actual "storm"? I'm sorry, an inch of snow in late November doesn't qualify. But a slow-moving surge of moisture approaching from the south may drop enough snow to shovel and plow late Monday into midday Tuesday. It's still premature to lob around inch-amounts, but on our (patented) scale from nuisance to plowable to crippling this could definitely wind up in the plowable category. Stay tuned...
Well, we had our Thanksgiving excitement: 1.3" of slush at MSP International Airport; more south and east, less north and west. Just enough to remind us that the start of meteorological winter is a few days away. On paper. There still isn't much in the way of bitter air showing up within a few thousand miles of Minnesota; I see a mild bias continuing into mid-December, possibly longer. We'll see snow and cold fronts, just not the volume we're accustomed to.
Somewhere along the way an inch of snow became a "storm". BREAKING NEWS! When temperatures are near 32F as they will be today an inch of snow is a nuisance, most major roads stay wet with accumulation on lawns, fields, and slow-moving relatives. There probably will be some slippery roads by late afternoon and evening, especially south/east of MSP, where a couple inches may pile up. Since we've all forgotten how to drive on snow please be careful out there! Better yet, stay home, have an extra plate of food and ponder the many things we all have to be thankful for.
While many are planning on traveling over the next couple of days, a storm system will wrap up over the Central U.S., making for a few trouble spots. The good news is that significant snowfall tallies look unlikely close to home as the storm passes to our south, but rain changing to light snow Wednesday into Thursday may make for a slower commute. Check the blog for more details. -Todd Nelson