OK, don't say I didn't warn you people....

thats why I am at least 1/2 mile away from you David when possible. You seem to attract trouble but it does make for good video. Bet a few chasers down the road a bit had to change their shorts after that one.
 
thats why I am at least 1/2 mile away from you David when possible. You seem to attract trouble but it does make for good video. Bet a few chasers down the road a bit had to change their shorts after that one.

I heard someone hollar from all the way down there! They might have been saying "Get my clean shorts!" I couldn't be sure. Best estimate that hit about a hundred yards away. Totally missed the telephone poles there and nailed metal fence post under them!
 
Damn, that's the first time I think I've ever heard the static noise just by the lightning itself!

It also looks like the bolt was maybe even blowing from left to right towards the end of the clip.

Pretty damn sweet man! :shock:
 
hmmm

Also freeze it at :03 and notice the weakly luminescent streamers emanating from what appears to be EXTREMELY close to David. Thank God those didnt fully connect!!! :shock: (unless this is some sort of error in the camera where there is a ghost image of the lightning).
 
David's clip pretty much sums up the lightning with this storm. Close CGs were staggering! Right after the big wedge yesterday, I watched one bright, pulsing CG hit in the field right next to the road less than 300 feet or so away, bright fiery orange and red at the first 20 feet or so above the ground, followed by a large plume of smoke rising from the wheat. There were a group of chasers parked right beside it! I'm sure someone must have caught it on tape.

*At least* a half dozen strikes hit within 1/4 mile of me while I was out filming, with thunder less than 2 seconds following. Didn't catch any directly on camera like David did, but the flash and audio is great!
 
Wow! :shock:

That beats the close call the NSSL guys had a while back.
 
Yes sir, that was awesome. David, that's my red Explorer in the foreground with the satellite on top. We were parked just next to you !!! :shock:

I had a chase partner who decided to lean out of the vehicle to get shots of the rotation overhead (not a safe thing) then all the sudden... THE TASTE OF OZONE !!!!!!!!!!

I can't post the video clip here, but I've got footage of it hitting the ground and then spreading out in an orange "flash". What an amazing day yesterday was. Those cells gave us just about everything we could ask for.
 
oh great...and i was leaning on your vehicle talking to you yesterday...i knew there was a reason i didnt feel safe :lol: jk least it made for some awesome video! btw it was great meeting you and congrats on the tornadoes!
 
He ain't kidding...the only time I've ever been bitten by a lightning strike (secondary shock through my video camera/inverter setup), Dave was standing about ten feet away from me.
 
Here's one for your desktop Billy. :lol:

zapped.jpg


and check out the beading when the channel collapsed

zapped.beading.jpg
 
I hate to say this, but with visual observations I have made over the last few years, particularly last year and this year. That stuff about lightning usually striking the tallest nearby object is a load of crap. :shock:

9 out of 10 times I have seen CGs completely bypass taller objects, some pretty darn close to ground zero to hit a shorter object or even the ground.

Oh, and a quick funny...

The evening of the Petersburg/Floydada tornadoes, I was live on the air and not once but TWICE lightning struck the power pole 2 poles down from me. :shock:
 
Thats why when I chased for a local station I wouldnt do live call ins. something like that would probably happen and I would slip and say something I shouldnt on the air :oops:
 
Thats why when I chased for a local station I wouldnt do live call ins. something like that would probably happen and I would slip and say something I shouldnt on the air :oops:

I have to say chasing for them and doing the live stuff has really helped me with language problems. I don't know if I am more aware or what...but so far I haven't had to edit any colorful metaphors out of the audio yet. :oops:
 
I hate to say this, but with visual observations I have made over the last few years, particularly last year and this year. That stuff about lightning usually striking the tallest nearby object is a load of crap.

I completely agree. I've had more close calls with "standard Florida storms" that I can count, and they're almost never tall object hits. There really is no such thing as a safe place outdoors when the CG's are crackin'.
 
Yesterday we had a CG strike so close to us (less than 200 yards) that we saw a dust/smoke plume come up. The CG struck bare dirt..... the least tallest object :eek:

Aaron
 
That's a perfect example of why I always stay INSIDE my vehicle when it's lightning like that. David, you got lucky again!
 
Thwack!!! :shock:

So dangerous ... but so darn COOL!!! Why DO I love this stuff so much (ever ask yourself that? :p ).

That is one intense video. Glad none of the chasers were hurt though...truly (eep!)

That stuff about lightning usually striking the tallest nearby object is a load of crap.

I am very glad that you pointed this out. Lightning does not need a tall, protruding object to strike - oh geez that is such a myth. Stormchasers know that but so many non-weather folks seem to think that's just the way lightning works.

I have seen so many insignificant blades of grass get tiki torched while 100ft boulevard palms in the same area go untouched after the lightning traveled 10+ miles to get there! Who knew? Thor is a capricious fellow.

Not to give lightning-phobes the heebie-jeebies, but to illustrate just how random and indecisive lightning can be, I thought I'd post these (needless to say I get a lot of requests to use them in lightning safety lectures :shock: ).

Arizona is a big place - these are long distances the bolts are spanning. And what the heck are they going for? Who knows. Somewhere out there is a smoking rock (and obviously, a new stalk of wheat still smouldering in a field in Texas!)

LLBoltfromtheBlue.jpg

LLCaprice.jpg
 
6/12 lightning

I've never seem storms so electrically active as Sunday's. We were truly more scared of the CG's that the multiple tornadoes we witnessed. There was one point where a stepped leader and then about 4 return strokes struck a telephone pole within 100 feet of our vehicle. I was outside with my camera and hit the deck like someone had fired a gun. I then bolted inside the car like a frightened turtle. My neck felt really hot afterwards, so I don't know if I was "struck" per se, but it was way too close for comfort. We were hearing the electrical static all over the place.

The CG's were worst on the southern storm, which didn't produce any tornadoes. This make sense because weaker updrafts tend to suspend charged precip particles closer to the ground and have higher CG flash rates, while tornadic updrafts have higher intracloud flash rates.
 
Re: 6/12 lightning

The CG's were worst on the southern storm, which didn't produce any tornadoes. This make sense because weaker updrafts tend to suspend charged precip particles closer to the ground and have higher CG flash rates, while tornadic updrafts have higher intracloud flash rates.

Not always. There have been some tornadic storms that have produced little if any lightning. Then there are other tornadic storms that have had extremely frequent CG lightning during all tornadic phases... from tornadogenesis to the mature stage to tornadolysis.
 
Well, it's very interesting. You mention lightning and tornadogenesis. This would be good to start a new topic on. I was on the cell Sunday very early just about 10 miles south of Spur as the initial tornadoes were ongoing. Tornadoes directly to my west, and I was in some of the precip from the core and anvil nearby. I was getting constant violent 'staccato' type lightning right on top and around me. That is one of the main reasons I retreated rather than sit there and watch whatever tornadoes it was about to produce. Many of these were very strange bolts. As I recall most began right after the initial tornadoes but while the wallcloud was still churning and planning on dropping more (probably bigger) tornadoes. They were instantaneously fast. Snap of the fingers timespan and they would appear and be gone. Though very close, most were completely, bizarrely, silent. They would fork out from the base in mid air and many did not actually reach the ground. They were just zipping all around me. At the same time, there were also the typical CG's hitting nearby. It was a bit concerning that's why I backed off. As I recall one of the guys on this list is collecting data for a study related to lightning and tornadogenesis. There does seem to be some type of connection. This type of lightning I am describing is very rare and unique and seems to have different properties. I don't know if any other chasers saw any of this because at the time I thought I was the first chaser on the tornadic area that close out in the countryside. I suppose others could have been spread out on different back roads though and I just didn't see them, but initially I saw no other chasers except some parked and out of their vehicle that I had left about 5 miles to the northwest of my later position near the wallcloud.
 
Though very close, most were completely, bizarrely, silent. They would fork out from the base in mid air and many did not actually reach the ground. They were just zipping all around me. At the same time, there were also the typical CG's hitting nearby. It was a bit concerning that's why I backed off. As I recall one of the guys on this list is collecting data for a study related to lightning and tornadogenesis.

I know exactly what you're talking about. It is a type of lightning that is bright, close, but very little thunder. I don't get that. Plus, it's staccato, here then gone, rapid pulse but no multiple flashes. And the branches look kind of weird.

I was driving through Almena KS and heard a radio show on NOAA out of Hastings NE. They were talking about exactly that - lightning and tornadogenesis. I talked to them a bit there on the air because one of the things that always perplexes me is how one well-formed tornadic storm can display hardly any lightning at all, yet another sparks up like a Tesla coil. Some of them go crazy, others nothing. A very good topic to discuss, maybe a new thread? I agree, a very interesting topic.
 
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