Category Archives: Hail

Ominous cloud depicts storm’s strength

This dramatic cloud formation was photographed by Nicole Loeffler in Reno County Tuesday night. The structure was morphing from a supercell thunderstorm to a more linear cluster of thunderstorms.

That’s not to say the storm had lost its ability to produce large hail, however, as Loeffler’s car can attest. She and her chase partner were caught out on an open road, and by the time they took shelter in a stranger’s house, the damage had been done.

Storms deliver triple digit winds, hail nearly 5 inches in diameter, street flooding

As sunrise brings fresh light to the aftermath of strong storms in southern Kansas from Tuesday night, authorities are beginning to assess the toll.

Hail as large as baseballs was reported in east Hutchinson, according to Reno County Emergency Management. Winds estimated as high as 100 miles an hour were reported in southern Reno County near Pretty Prairie. The town itself was hit hard by hail and strong winds, knocking down trees and blocking streets.

“Please Please Please stay away from Pretty Prairie for now. They are not letting people into town at this time,” a post on Reno County Emergency Management’s Facebook page implored.

A hail stone measuring 4.75 inches in diameter fell near Yoder in eastern Reno County and hail as large as tennis balls was also reported.

More heavy rain strong winds struck Argonia in Sumner County Tuesday night, which was still picking up the pieces from Monday night’s microburst storm that ripped portions of the roof off the high school and elementary school.

Officially, Wichita recorded 1.02 inches of rain, according to National Weather Service meteorologist Eric Schminke. But heavier amounts were reported elsewhere in the city – including an inch of rain falling in just a half-hour at Central and Ridge Road in west Wichita.

Substantial rain over each of the past two days in the Cheney Lake watershed area is likely to boost water levels at the lake. With the ground already saturated, runoff into the lake – which until recently was Wichita’s primary water source – should be considerable.

Expect strong storms later today in Wichita area

Large hail, damaging winds and a long-track tornado or two are possible in the Wichita metropolitan area later today, forecasters warn.

The strong thunderstorms that dumped more than two inches across the city before 7 a.m. have helped stabilize the atmosphere, but afternoon heating is expected to recharge the environment and set the stage for potentially violent weather.

Hail as large as baseballs, winds of more than 70 miles an hour and heavy rain are possible along with a tornado or two, according to the National Weather Service. The best chances for severe weather appear to be south of U.S. 50, or roughly south of a line from Hutchinson to Cottonwood Falls.

The Storm Prediction Center placed a small segment of southern Kansas and a large chunk of central Oklahoma in a moderate risk for severe weather today. Wichita is not included in the moderate, but the counties of Cowley, Sumner, Montgomery, Chautauqua and a bit of Elk are in the elevated risk zone.

Storm Prediction Center: Atmosphere in Central Plains “loaded gun”

The Storm Prediction Center has expanded its moderate risk zone for severe weather today, saying the atmosphere is so unstable in western Kansas down into northern Texas that it resembles a “loaded gun.”

Large hail, damaging winds and strong tornadoes are possible with any storms that develop, according to the SPC.

“The greatest potential for strong tornadoes this afternoon is expected to develop from near Dodge City southward across the eastern Texas panhandle and western Oklahoma,” a statement issued by the SPC reads. “Swaths of wind damage will be possible with the more intense supercells and bow echoes.”

As the storms move eastward in to the Wichita area, the primary threats are likely to be large hail and damaging winds, according to the Wichita branch of the National Weather Service. Hail could be larger than 2 inches in diameter with some storms and winds could exceed 70 miles an hour.

Tornado watch issued for northern and northeast Kansas

A tornado watch has been issued for 30 counties in northcentral Kansas until 10 p.m.

Large hail and damaging winds appear to be the primary threats from the strong thunderstorms, according to the National Weather Service.

“Given the amount of instability, a tornado or two will be hard to rule out,” a weather statement from the agency cautions.

The strongest storms are most likely to from along and north of a line from Great Bend to McPherson to Cottonwood Falls.

The counties in the watch include: Atchison, Brown, Clay, Cloud, Coffey, Dickinson, Doniphan, Douglas, Franklin, Geary, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Leavenworth, Linn, Lyon, Marshall, Miami, Morris, Nemaha, Osage, Ottawa, Pottawatomie, Republic, Riley, Saline, Shawnee, Wabaunsee, Washington and Wyandotte.

Parts of Kansas in a moderate risk for severe weather today

The Storm Prediction Center has placed a chunk of northcentral Kansas in a moderate risk for severe weather on this Memorial Day.

Among the cities included in the moderate zone are Salina, Smith Center and Concordia.

“Explosive thunderstorm development is anticipated by mid- to late afternoon over northcentral Kansas and southcentral Nebraska,” the SPC alert states. “Intense supercells appear likely with the threat for tornadoes – some potentially significant – and very large hail.”

Wichita is included in a slight risk for severe weather.

Severe weather threat update

Strong storms with the potential for large hail and tornadoes are possible this weekend around Kansas, forecasters say.

Moderate risk of baseball-sized hail and tornadoes in northwest Kansas, southwest Nebraska

The Storm Prediction Center in Norman has upgraded the storm threat in northwest Kansas and southwest Nebraska to moderate for Saturday.

Forecasting models are suggesting conditions in that sector will support the development of tornadoes and large hail – as big as baseballs in some cases.

Among the cities included in the moderate are Hays, Stockton, Colby, Hill City, Atwood and Norton.

Suzanne Fortin, meteorologist in charge of the National Weather Service in Wichita, said she wouldn’t be surprised if the moderate zone for Saturday is eventually increased to include Russell and Rush counties in central Kansas.

Today’s severe weather threat in Kansas

The Storm Prediction Center in Norman has issued a slight risk for severe weather in much of central Kansas – including the Wichita area -as well as portions of Texas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Colorado and Missouri.

The tornado threat is minimal, according to an SPC outlook, but large hail and strong winds are possible.

Residents should monitor forecasts and conditions and be prepared to seek appropriate shelter if and when strong storms threaten. The National Weather Service in Wichita is projecting the storms to reach the Wichita area after 7 p.m.

Strong thunderstorms to threaten Wichita early this afternoon

Heavy rain and small hail are possible from storms sliding south into the Wichita metropolitan area early this afternoon, according to the National Weather Service.