Wedge Tornadoes: Nature's Largest Twisters

Discussion in 'Weather In The News' started by Jeff Duda, Feb 15, 2017.

  1. Jeff Duda

    Jeff Duda Arbitrarily calls almost every setup a bust
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  2. Wes Carter

    Wes Carter Member

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    Thanks for sharing that. I was surprised that the article indicated the southeastern United States has the highest number of wedge tornadoes, but the explanation makes sense.


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  3. JamesCaruso

    JamesCaruso Member

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    From the article: "The city of New Orleans, Louisiana recently made weather news headlines, not because of a coastal Atlantic hurricane, but because of the New Orleans East tornado, rated an EF2, that touched down in early February 2017. It left many wondering how such a large and strong storm could occur so early in the tornado season"

    This is a pet peeve of mine, every single time there is a tornado in the southeast in the winter months somebody writes something to the effect that it's so unusual. Sure it's outside of the traditional "tornado months" of May and June, but those are the months for the Plains, not the southeast, where most tornado outbreaks do in fact occur in the winter months...


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  4. Jeff Wright

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  5. Paul Knightley

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    It is good to see an article about it, although phraseology talking about airmasses 'colliding' is always somewhat annoying. I get that it's difficult to explain to a general audience about aspects of meteorology, but talking about 'collisions' in meteorology is not great!
     
  6. Jeff Duda

    Jeff Duda Arbitrarily calls almost every setup a bust
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    For those interested in issues with the "colliding air masses" explanation for severe weather, this recent BAMS article should suffice: http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/BAMS-D-13-00252.1
     
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  7. NealRasmussen

    NealRasmussen Member

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    Funny. This doesn't seem to be a wedge. http://f.tqn.com/y/weather/1/W/N/a/-/-/canada-weather-tornado-in-manitoba-595077974.jpg
    But I digress. :)
    I had the gelling of a thought a week or two ago. That multi-vortex tornadoes allow debris to "load up" in the 'Tornado Vortex'. Thereby upping the damage by a probable significant amount. (I think most all wide tornadoes are multi-vortex, some just so filled up the subvorts are hidden from view often.)

    A 'small' tornado of a single vortex, even though strong to violent will cause any structural or tree limb debris to be tossed away from it. A flinging outward of any structures hit, in a most likely quasi-random path. Often perhaps a 'trail' of debris smeared off a structure. But the likelyhood of this single vortex going over the debris it just caused is low.

    Now do that with a multi-vortex tornado. I counted 6 subvortices in the SW quadrant of the Chickasha stovepipe May 3, 1999. Makes 24 subvorts total? Ouch. Now when something is hit, it is quite likely that debris will be picked back up by another subvort. This allows multi-vortex, read large, tornadoes to build a debris load, and the tornado uses this against other structures.

    I think of 'wedge' as a shape for identification in communication.

    P.S. Gooses flying north. Trees budding. I thought I heard a cicada. Oh, and a few tornadoes in the midwest. Spring??
     

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