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Heat Wave #2

Good afternoon bloggers,

It was 99° yesterday officially at KCI Airport. So, the streak continues.  There is a decent chance of a few thunderstorms by Sunday morning, but the chance is seemingly getting less and less as this system approaches. The last inch of rain in KC happened around 46 to 47 days before Sunday, so, it would fit for us to get hit, but that doesn’t mean for sure we will. We will monitor the chance over the weekend.

The 500 mb Flow Valid Wednesday, July 4th:

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What does this map mean?  This forecast map shows the 500 mb flow valid on July 4th.  500 mb is around 18,000 feet above us and meteorologists use this level to find and track storm systems and disturbances. What happens aloft, and not just at 18,000 feet, but through a deeper layer will help influence significantly what happens at the surface. An average thunderstorm has a top of around 30,000 to 45,000 feet at this time of the year, with the stronger severe thunderstorms possibly reaching 70,000 feet or higher, the top of the troposphere.  So, 18,000 feet is really a middle layer. This map shows two major anticyclones; one over the eastern states, and another over the Pacific Ocean. The anticyclone can be a heat wave creating machine, and this one right now is pretty strong.  We will be at the mercy of this system with the main jet stream and flow being diverted over the top and in between these features. The red line is the 594 line, or the heigh of the 500 mb level, or 5,940 meters above sea level. This has forced the jet stream to retreat all the way up to Hudson Bay.  The pattern is still cycling regularly, so we will be able to predict when cold fronts are most likely to move through, and one of them is approaching Saturday night, but it is being influenced by this pattern.  These high heights will be a factor in the next few weeks as we move deeper into summer. The chance of 100 degrees a few times this summer is nearly 100%.  Let’s see how it sets up.

I will be back to work at KSHB-TV on Monday.  Sunny is not liking the heat, but I did get her out for a 7 AM walk before the heat built in. Here is a picture, and have a great weekend.  Click on the blog at Weather2020 to share in this weather experience.

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Gary

1753, 1604, 42

Good Wednesday bloggers,

An almost five year streak may break today.  The numbers, in the title of this blog, represent weather streaks ongoing in Kansas City (officially). It has been almost 5 years since we reached 100°. This streak may end Thursday, but it will take a drop in the dew points to do so. The drier the air, the better chance of heating up. The 3″ snowstorm streak will have to wait awhile and the 1″ of rain in one day is going to have to wait at least a few days. KCI did not get a drop of rain out of the big Tuesday thunderstorms. They received 0.15″ from morning rain. Now, if the thunderstorm was farther north, then KCI would have seen 1″ of rain in 20 minutes.

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Now that we are transitioning from severe weather to heat, here are some statistics that you may not know.

This is a graph of the annual weather related deaths that occur in the USA, using a 30 year average. Flooding is ahead of tornadoes followed by wind and lightning. Hail does not kill people, just wallets. Hail can cause huge damage to roofs, cars and crops.

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Do you know what the number one weather killer is? It is heat which is close to the number of deaths caused by flooding and tornadoes combined. I believe when there is a flood or tornado, people are more vigilant. This is likely due to not only ample warning, but floods and tornadoes are much more rapid and violent. Heat is a slower evolving thing, even though in 5-10 minutes a closed car can reach 140°!

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Here are some simple heat tips. They sound simple, but so is “Turn around don’t drown” when it comes to flooding. If everyone followed the simple rules the numbers above would drop. You simply cannot leave your kids/pets in the car when it gets hot, even when the high is in the 80s and low 90s.

 

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Now, let;s get to the forecast. The anticyclone or “heat wave creating machine” is forming in the southern Rockies and will travel east through Saturday, affecting the middle of the USA as it does so.

Here is the Thursday upper level flow. The jet stream is running across the northern USA as the anticyclone grows over the southern Rockies and Plains.

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The anticyclone will travel to the northeast by Saturday as it gets pushed by a trough moving through the Rockies. So, as the anticyclone takes this track it will bring three really hot days to our area, likely our second heat wave of the season.

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THURSDAY MORNING: A few thunderstorms will be possible across northern and eastern Missouri, along the leading edge of the higher heat. Lows will be 75°-80° with downtown KC likely seeing lows 80°-85°. If a thunderstorm affected I-70 later tonight, it would not be a surprise.

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THURSDAY AFTERNOON: This is the day where we have the best chance to break the 100° streak as the upper level high will be very near and moving in. If there are more thunderstorms later tonight into early Thursday than we are forecasting it will leave cloud debris and a possible outflow boundary, taking care of the 100° threat. This would happen even if the thunderstorms were more numerous in northern Missouri and not in KC.

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FRIDAY: The anticyclone begins its trek east and highs around here will cool a few degrees as we go into south flow aloft around the western edge of the upper level high. The cold front in Nebraska arrives later Saturday night into Sunday increasing the chance of thunderstorms and possibly breaking the third weather streak.

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Have a great rest of the week and stay cool!

Jeff Penner

Wow! Crazy Weather Day

Good Tuesday night or Wednesday morning bloggers,

We went from partly cloudy, warm and humid at 11 AM to major thunderstorms 12-1 PM to sunny by 2 PM. The worst of the thunderstorms occurred south of I-70. The thunderstorms were moving east-southeast at 60 mph! The most damage occurred in Jackson county and there was a brief EF 0 tornado near Lake Latowana.  I am guessing the LLTI (Lezak’s Leaving Town Index) finally worked for the first time this year.  Gary is down at the lake, and he lost power last night at Table Rock when the system reached that far south.  His power was out for around five hours down there, but the storms were even worse near KC.

Here is a still image from a time-lapse about 1230 PM. You can see the well defined shelf cloud as it was surging southeast.

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Let’s see how these thunderstorms developed in three radar images yesterday:

12 PM TUESDAY: We were tracking a small thunderstorm northeast of Topeka and I was getting ready to fill in for Gary.  The thunderstorms were intensifying and I thought I would have time to get to work before they got too bad. The SPC didn’t really mention much of a chance of a tornado, but severe thunderstorms are always capable of producing one, so we must always monitor each strong to severe thunderstorm closely.

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1 PM TUESDAY: The thunderstorms were rapidly growing and intensifying. Also, notice how they travelled from Topeka to KC in one hour, and there seems to be a little hook forming near I-35:

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2 PM TUESDAY: The thunderstorms did their damage in Jackson county and were now affecting Warrensburg. Again, moving at 60 mph, at least. The thunderstorms became a line and this ended the tornado threat for the most part.

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Now, we turn our attention to the next weather issue and that is the heat. Did you know heat is the number one weather killer, per year, by far? We are also in an Orange alert for air pollution tomorrow. The chance of having air quality issues tomorrow after what went through today, is quite low. We are in a Heat Advisory for Thursday-Saturday and it may be upgraded to an Excessive Heat Warning.

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WEDNESDAY: The heat is building as we we will see highs 90°-95°. 100°+ arrives in the southwest Plains. New thunderstorms will track along the leading edge of the heat from Nebraska to Iowa and eastern Missouri.

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THURSDAY: Our in house data is showing something that has not occurred in 1752 days, September 8, 2013. That is a high of at least 100°. We are going 99°, but when you go 99°, that means you think it could be 100°. So, yes the streak may end. Notice, the thunderstorms in northeast Missouri.

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The heat will last through Saturday, but a cold front will arrive Sunday.

Have a great night and start to Wednesday. Gerard Jebaily is filling in for Gary tonight, and I will be doing the Midday show. I will work on a new blog entry by sometime this afternoon.  You can join in the conversation over on the Weather2020 blog.

Jeff Penner

At Least It Is Raining, But, It Did Happen Again

Good morning bloggers,

A weakening area of rain with a few embedded thunderstorms was spinning across eastern Kansas early on this Monday morning.   Take a look:

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This rather large complex of rain and thunderstorms was weakening as it moved into KC.  It does appear it will hold together long enough to provide a nice drink of water for some of our lawns.  There may even be around 1/2″ to 1″ of rain in spots, so let me know how much you receive.  But, as I titled this blog, it happened again. “It” has happened almost every time there has been a chance of rain or snow since the end of October. I am not sure if there are any exceptions.  In my spring forecast I predicted 10″ of rain during May and June, and so fare we have had 5.47″ in May and 2.54″ in June, before todays rainfall.  This is why everything is still green, as we have had just barely enough.  There is another chance later today, but it appears that chance is going to shift way down to southwestern Missouri, and that is where I am heading today with Sunny The Weather Dog. I will be at Table Rock Lake later this afternoon, so the weather for that area appears to be much more exciting than for us farther north, and this has been going on all year long.

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This map above shows the surface set up valid at 7 PM this evening. There will be a weak surface low tracking across eastern Nebraska by this evening, and as you can see, somehow, someway, KC is once again not in the right spot to have the redevelopment of thunderstorms. Hopefully we get a good soaking this morning, and then there is another chance Tuesday night, but even that chance is trying to shift away from KC, because look at what happens by Wednesday and Thursday:

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Thank you for spending a few minutes of your day reading the Action Weather Blog featuring Weather2020 and the LRC. Go to the Weather2020 blog to share in this weather experience. Have a great day. Sunny and I leave later this morning for the lake. I am looking forward to getting away for  few days, and maybe actually experiencing a real thunderstorm for a change. It certainly looks like I may get one down there.

Gary

Several Chances of Thunderstorms, but this is 2018!

Good Sunday bloggers,

Well we had another night where large clusters of thunderstorms missed our area. They have been tracking from eastern Colorado to eastern Oklahoma, reducing drought conditions in those locations. We may see a few showers and thunderstorms today, but our best chance is later tonight.

Let’s go through our latest thinking.

Early Sunday morning we were tracking two waves of energy. One was located in northeast Oklahoma and this will bring clouds and perhaps a few showers and thunderstorms this morning to our area. The second wave was located in northwest Kansas. This wave will head east in a weakened state and affect our area this afternoon with more clouds and the chance of a few showers and thunderstorms.

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Here is the Storm Prediction Center outlook for today as of 7 AM Sunday. The best chance of widespread severe weather will be in southwest Kansas and the panhandles of Oklahoma and Texas and western Oklahoma. We are on the eastern edge of the slight risk with the timing of our threat, later tonight.

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SUNDAY 4 PM: It will be mostly calm around here with rain in southern Missouri. We may have a few showers and thunderstorms, but the focus for severe thunderstorm development will be in the southwest Plains where a warm and cold front are close together.

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SUNDAY EVENING: The main thunderstorms will be located over southwest Kansas. Damaging winds, large hail and tornadoes will be possible out there. There may be a weaker extension to the east, along I-70, towards our area after 10 PM.

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TONIGHT AFTER MIDNIGHT: This is when we have the best chance of thunderstorms as the main area tracks east and northeast. There will be a chance that these thunderstorms cause damaging winds and flash flooding.

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MONDAY MORNING: Rain and thunderstorms will be tracking northeast as they weaken. This still means a likely wet morning rush hour with standing water in places. Showers and thunderstorms may linger until noon.

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MONDAY AFTERNOON AND EVENING: Right now it looks like the best chance of new thunderstorms will be across central and eastern Missouri, but it depends on how things are left after the activity tonight.

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TUESDAY: The morning into the afternoon look dry as it becomes very warm and humid. Then, a new weak front and disturbance move in. Thunderstorms will likely form during the evening from eastern Kansas to northern Missouri. These would head south and have the chance to be severe with damaging winds and flash flooding the main threats.

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Rainfall in most locations, by Wednesday, should be 1″ to 2″ with a few locations seeing 2″-5″. The location of 2″-5″ rainfall amounts is yet to be determined as it is thunderstorm weather and the models do not do well with predicting bulls eyes of rain. Let’s hope your yard or farm receives the rain it needs. If you get missed by Wednesday, it looks hot and dry into the weekend and early next week.

Have a great week.

Jeff Penner

More Thunderstorm Chances, More of the Same?

Good Saturday bloggers,

I was on vacation in Colorado and a had a great time. I went whitewater rafting for the first time and zip lined over the Royal Gorge, my first time zip lining. It was also firsts for my wife and son. Skyler said this trip has changed him. #thistriphaschangedme. We had a blast!

Penner White Water

Penner Zip Line

When I was out there I know we had our first heat wave and then we had some thunderstorms, but once again they were falling apart as they moved through, so some locations did not see much rain. Officially, we are still close to 5″ below average rainfall for the year.

Today will be dry after a few morning sprinkles and light showers. The next chance of thunderstorms is for Sunday night into Monday and the data wants very badly to have it fall apart before it arrives.

We will show data from our in house computer model, the 6Z and 9Z Saturday data runs.  It is the same old thing as we are in the same old pattern.

6Z DATA FOR 11 PM SUNDAY: We will be tracking thunderstorms forming in western Kansas Sunday afternoon as a disturbance heads out of the Rockies. We will have a slight chance of thunderstorms around here during the day. This data has the large complex of thunderstorms making it to KC intact. This would be great.

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9Z DATA FOR 11 PM SUNDAY: Well, look at that. The thunderstorms are breaking apart and staying mostly south. We shall see as this is not set in stone, but my goodness it fits this season.

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6Z RAINFALL FORECAST THROUGH MONDAY: There is another chance of rain and thunderstorms Monday as a new disturbance comes in from the southwest. So, the 6Z data showed widespread 1″-3″ of rain in locations that need it.

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9Z RAINFALL FORECAST THROUGH MONDAY: This shows quite a reduction in the rainfall potential and this certainly is possible as this is 2018 in our area. The 9Z data even broke apart the Monday thunderstorms before they arrive.

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SPC OUTLOOK FOR SUNDAY: The Storm Prediction Center is suggesting the 9Z data is more likely as the best chance of severe weather is in southwest Kansas with no risk just east of KC. Now, we can still see some decent rain without severe, but again, we know how this season is going.

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Have a great weekend and we will see what subsequent data shows.

Jeff Penner

Is It Going To Happen Again?

Good morning bloggers,

There is another chance of a big drink of water for our lawns showing up later this weekend.  Let’s look at four computer model outputs, and then open up the discussion below.  We will start with the NAM, with the second model being the GFS, then the Canadian model, and finally the European Model:

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The four models have varying rainfall forecasts:

  • NAM:  4.11″
  • GFS:  2.01″
  • Canadian:  0.64″
  • Euro:  0.72″

It has been baffling in attempting to describe how there is a “miss” every time. Oh, some of us have gotten a decent rainfall here and there, but I do not believe there has been even one wide spread rainfall or snowfall in this years LRC that hit the entire KC viewing area region, which extends from Maryville, near the Iowa border to Pleasanton and Garnett Kansas, farther south, and from just east of Topeka, KS to Sedalia, MO.  And, is it about to happen again?  If any of you have looked at the models closely, then you may realize that there is always a model that is much lower than the others. And, this varies from storm to storm. One storm could show 5″ of snow on three of the the four models, but one model shows a solution with nothing.  There could be all four models showing 5″ of snow, and then the HRRR short range model shows nothing.  For Kansas City there has been zero consensus on the models. There is always one the shows the miss. And, just looking above, today it is the Canadian model for this next good chance. It is the lowest amount, basically showing another miss. This does not mean that we won’t finally break through Sunday into Monday, but it is another warning sign.

What do I think will happen?  Answer: There will be at least two or three big complexes of thunderstorms between now and Tuesday.  And, I will go with the models and say anywhere from 0.5″ to over 4″ are possible.

Have a great day. Let’s see how this sets up. Thank you for sharing in this weather experience featuring Weather2020 and the LRC.

Gary

Is Climate Change Real? Answer: Yes!

Good morning bloggers,

Summer began at 5:09 AM central time today, and it will be a cooler first day of summer. Today, since I am in flight to Los Angeles for the day, I will do a quick blog, but open up the dialogue. Go to the Weather2020 blog to join in the conversation by clicking here:  Weather2020 Blog

Is Climate Change real?  The short answer is a resounding YES.  The earth is in a strong warming phase right now, and likely caused by human influences since the Industrial Revolution.  While the exact causes are certainly up for debate, the fact is that the earth is warming up.  Today, #MetsUnite is in progress with meteorologists wearing the Climate Change tie:

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The tie represents every years temperatures from 1850 to the current year, color coded for the level of temperature.

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Do you believe in Climate Change? Do you believe the earth is warming up? I suggest looking at the facts. What is causing this warming? That is up for debate, but the facts also lean in the direction of Anthropogenic forcing.

Have a great day. I will check in later.

Gary

Another Hit Or Miss

Good morning bloggers,

Here we are on the last day of spring, and a storm system is moving our way.  It has happened again, although a few of us did receive a really nice thunderstorm yesterday afternoon.  As you can see below, there were many spots that did not even receive one drop of rain:

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This map above shows the estimated rainfall totals fro the Kansas City region.  And, the thunderstorms that were raging this way last night completely fizzled.  Amazingly, there isn’t even anything left on radar from last nights huge area of thunderstorms, at least approaching our area.  A few spots, even near KC had over an inch of rain.  Today, it appears that Kansas City is going to get missed.  I am not 100% certain as something may form along a wind shift line that is going to move through, but it would be brief, and most likely form to our east as you can see below:

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This forecast map shows a thin line of thunderstorms getting its act together southeast of KC, while the stronger surface low with heavy thunderstorms all around it located over northern Iowa.  That northern Iowa system will drop south, or part of it will anyway leaving KC with one chance of rain on Thursday from the main system. This main system, by 11 PM tonight as seen below, is getting a bit better organized.  We are cycling through the part of the pattern that in October did produce 3″ of rain near Kansas City, and it is producing again. It missed a few areas in October, and it is missing a few areas again in June.

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Kansas City Weather Timeline:

  • Today:  Partly cloudy with a 30% chance of a thunderstorm this afternoon. High: 85°
  • Tonight: Partly cloudy with a slight chance of thunderstorms. Low:  68°
  • Thursday: Summer begins at 5:09 AM.  Expect increasing clouds, cooler, with a 70% chance of a few showers or thunderstorms.  High:  78°
  • Friday: Partly cloudy with a 30% chance of rain showers or thunderstorms. High:  79°

Here we go again. Take a look at the rainfall forecast for the next 15 days from last nights GFS model run.  How many times have we seen this, and some areas are actually getting production?  But, many others are very dry.

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Summer begins tomorrow morning at 5:09 AM.  Let’s see how this all sets up.  Have a  great day and thank you for reading the Action Weather Blog featuring Weather2020 and the LRC. Click here to join in the conversation:  Weather2020 blog

Gary

Afternoon Rain

Good afternoon bloggers,

Well, 1″ of rain just fell near KCI Airport.  The amounts are varying, so how much did you receive from this first wave. This is the first wave of energy around the first day of summer storm that is approaching.

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The storm is shown above by the arrows I showed on the water vapor satellite picture from just after 2 PM today.  There were still some lingering thunderstorms near I-70.  The main storm will be spinning by on Thursday as you can see below.

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Gary