Severe thunderstorms and tornadoes hit the southern U.S. Easter Weekend. As I type this around 5:20 am Mon. AM – we’ve had reports of 51 tornadoes Sunday PM, along with 279 reports of thunderstorm wind damage and 36 reports of severe criteria hail. We’ve had at least 12 fatalities and many injuries. It was well-forecast by the Storm Prediction Center and local National Weather Service Offices. Well before the event, the SPC said:
"An outbreak of severe thunderstorms appears likely Sunday into Sunday night, with the greatest threat expected from Louisiana east-northeastward through much of the Southeast and Tennessee Valley. Strong, long-tracked tornadoes and potentially widespread damaging wind are possible."
The above 4-panel map from the NWS showed the severe weather map for this (Sun.) PM in the upper left, the probability of a tornado within 25 miles of a given point in the upper right, the probability of severe criteria hail in the lower left and the probability of wind damage in the lower right. There is a rare High Risk area (in the magenta color) for W. Tennessee, N. Mississippi and N. Alabama. You can compare the storm reports map above to these advanced outlooks.
Today the severe weather risk moves east. There’s an Enhanced Risk Area( in orange) from Georgia to Virginia and the Slight Risk Area (in yellow) runs from the Gulf of Mexico to the PA/NY border. While the severe weather is going on in the East, the strong winds will be battering the Great Lakes and the Northeast.
The map above is storm reports from Saturday/Saturday night. There were no tornadoes and only 7 reports of wind damage. There was roof damage to a church in San Angelo. The BIG story was the BIG hail that fell…baseball-sized up in Kansas and 4″ in diameter near Del Rio, Texas.
Here’s the severe weather reports from Thursday. There was one inconsequential tornado at Hathaway, Louisiana. Winds hit 76 mph at the lakefront airport in New Orleans and 2″ hail fell at Hemphill, Texas. There was a swath of wind damage from Maryland northeast into the Philadelphia and Atlantic City areas.