01/15/2017

Atmospheric Rivers: What are they?

Atmospheric rivers are relatively long, narrow regions in the atmosphere – like rivers in the sky – that transport most of the water vapor outside of the tropics. These columns of vapor move with the weather, carrying an amount of water vapor roughly equivalent to the average flow of water at the mouth of the Mississippi River. When the atmospheric rivers make landfall, they often release this water vapor in the form of rain or snow- and usually a lot of it! A series of atmospheric rivers brought drought-relieving rains, heavy snowfall and flooding to California this week is highlighted below as well in a new movie created with satellite data from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite. The images were collected between January 7-11th. They show the amount of moisture present in the atmosphere and its movement across the Pacific Ocean to the United States, where much of it fell as rain or snow. Watch it here.

In early January 2017, the west coast experienced rain and flooding from a series of storms flowing from America on multiple streams of moist air, each individually known as an atmospheric river. 

Check out this loop of a recent atmospheric river that has wrecked havoc on the California coast below:

Video Courtesy: NWS Ocean Prediction Center

Although atmospheric rivers come in many shapes and sizes, those that contain the largest amounts of water vapor and the strongest winds can create extreme rainfall and floods, often by stalling over watersheds vulnerable to flooding. These events can disrupt travel, induce mudslides and cause catastrophic damage to life and property. A well-known example is the "Pineapple Express," a strong atmospheric river that is capable of bringing moisture from the tropics near Hawaii over to the U.S. West Coast.

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Not all atmospheric rivers cause damage; most are weak systems that often provide beneficial rain or snow that is crucial to the water supply. Atmospheric rivers are a key feature in the global water cycle and are closely tied to both water supply and flood risks — particularly in the western United States.

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While atmospheric rivers are responsible for great quantities of rain that can produce flooding, they also contribute to beneficial increases in snowpack. A series of atmospheric rivers fueled the strong winter storms that battered the U.S. West Coast from western Washington to southern California from Dec. 10–22, 2010, producing 11 to 25 inches of rain in certain areas. These rivers also contributed to the snowpack in the Sierras, which received 75 percent of its annual snow by Dec. 22, the first full day of winter.

NOAA research uses satellite, radar, aircraft and other observations, as well as major numerical weather model improvements, to better understand atmospheric rivers and their importance to both weather and climate.

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-Katie McGraw 

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01/14/2017

HD VIDEO: SpaceX Falcon 9 Launch!

A SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket launched the Iridium-1 NEXT mission, 10 satellites to low-Earth orbit for Iridium, from Space Launch Complex 4E at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, on 14 January 2017, at 17:54 UTC (09:54 PST).

YouTube Video via SciNews

Today's successful launch comes 4 and a half months after a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket exploded on September 1st during a fueling operation in preparation for a static-fire test. 

 

WDRB Meteorologist Jeremy Kappell

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Soggy Saturday: Tracking Out the Cold Rain

Rain is moving through Kentuckiana as I type and showers are becoming more numerous with time. The good news is that frozen precipitation has been very limited this morning. It skirted just north and west of our viewing area and we have only seen cold rain. However we will continue to see more showers for the next few hours. Let's time it out all for you so you can plan for the day ahead!

1-14 radar

This morning and early afternoon is our greatest chance for widespread showers. Almost the entire viewing area will be seeing rain and it will be all rain because temperatures will be in the upper 30s to low 40s. 

1-14 AT 12

Notice by 2 pm, showers will start to decrease in coverage as they head south and east of I-65. The west will begin to see drier but cloudy conditions at this time. 

1-14 AT 2 PM

By 3 pm there will be scattered showers only across the area. 

1-14 AT 3 PM

And finally by the end of the afternoon and early evening, the entire area will dry up and we will be left with mostly cloudy skies and only drizzle for the rest of tonight and tomorrow morning.

1-14 AT 530 PM

The only concern with drizzle, is that it could become freezing drizzle in our northern most counties, where temperatures will be around the freezing point overnight. It will be colder than last night and this morning, but there will be less wet weather.

1-14 AT OVERNIGHT

Remember, we remain under a Freezing Rain Advisory until tomorrow afternoon for Lawrence, Jackson and Jennings Counties. Any icing will very minor for untreated roads, bridges and overpasses but still use caution on the roads tonight and tomorrow morning! 

1-14 ICY SPOTUS

We will be experiencing a warming trend again and soon! Find out when to expect temps back in the 60s with Jeremy this evening on WDRB News! I will be back on air bright and early from 6-9 am as well Sunday morning. Until then you can find me on social media with the links below!

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-Katie McGraw 

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01/13/2017

VIDEO: SNOWBOARDER SURVIVES AVALANCHE...

Tom Oye was snowboarding in Whistler, Canada on January 11th when all of a sudden, an avalanche triggered behind him. At one point, the 29-year-old was submerged under snow while being tossed down the mountain. He escaped thanks to a combination of luck and an inflatable backpack! The terrifying event was captured on a helmet-cam giving you a first-hand perspective...

Video Courtesy: Ryan Northover

 

 

 

 

-Rick DeLuca

Rick

https://www.facebook.com/RickDeLucaWeather

Update: Timing Out Rain & Potential for Freezing Rain

It has been a cold, raw and damp day! So far there have been a few reports of freezing rain and sleet in our NW counties through the National Weather Service but little to no accumulation. As a reminder, the National Weather Service issued a FREEZING RAIN ADVISORY for Lawrence, Jackson and Jennings counties in Indiana from 7 PM Friday through 1 PM Sunday for the possibility of freezing rain. We have the possibility for freezing this evening through tomorrow morning and once again Saturday night into Sunday morning. 

1-13 FR advisory

The theme of the next 48 hours is going to be cold rain for most, freezing rain for some, and ice accumulation for few. Today has been a very soggy and gloomy day for KY. A wintry mix with a few slick spots have developed in Southern IN. Reports of freezing rain and sleet have come out of Bicknell, Decker, and Vincennes in Indiana. In Jasper in Dubois County, there were a few ice pellets mixed in with the rain this morning. 

1-13 radar

Temperatures across Kentuckiana are in the 30s, but the freezing line today will be for our northern most counties. That is where we have the best potential for freezing rain. From Dubois County up through Jennings County in Southern IN. 

1-13 temps

You can see that depicted a little bit better with this map below. Any ice accumulation will be minor! Elevated surfaces like trees, decks, cars and power lines COULD see a few hundredths of ice. The roads will be treated and the pavements temps will be above the freezing mark.  It's tough to get a major ice event following such a warm stretch, which is good new for us. But ice is ice and will still have the possibility to make road conditions slick.

1-13 ice accumulation

Notice on Future Radar below, that during this evening, the wintry mix precipitation is most likely north of our viewing area. Showers will be likely through this evening and taper off a bit later tonight through the overnight. 

1-13 AT 8 PM

Light showers and drizzle will possible again tomorrow morning. Temperatures in our NW counties will be hovering around freezing, so again there could be a few ice pellets to freezing rain. 

1-13 AT SAT 630 AM

It will become all rain by the afternoon as temperatures increase to the low 40s and upper 30s, but once again there will be widespread showers across the area as a second wave moves into the region, making tomorrow another rainy, gloomy, cold, raw, damp day!

1-13 AT SAT 230 PM

Is there an end in sight from all the wet weather? Find out this evening during WDRB News with Marc and Rick! 

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-Katie McGraw 

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Freezing Rain Heading In Now

From Jude Redfield...

    Light freezing rain is developing across sections of southern Indiana.  The reason this isn't going to be a major problem is because of the warm pavement. A light glaze is possible north of the yellow line below, but this would only POSSIBLY occur on elevated surfaces such as car tops, windshields and tree branches.

Headlines

    Cold rain is breaking out along I-64 and rolls through the Metro through the afternoon. Temps will hold steady in the 30s all day.

RadarHelp

ChristmasTree

    A significant ice storm will set up this weekend across Missouri and surrounding states. Our ice POTENTIAL is nothing compared to what they are expecting.

Roster

Katie McGraw will have updated radar images coming up on WDRB News from 11:30am - 12:30pm.  Today at 4pm Marc Weinberg looks at our heavy rain and storm threat next week. Our weather isn't going to calm down anytime soon. -Jude Redfield-

01/12/2017

FREEZING RAIN Possible For Parts Of Our Area...

The National Weather Service issued a FREEZING RAIN ADVISORY for Lawrence, Jackson and Jennings counties in Indiana from 7 PM Friday through 1 PM Sunday for the possibility of freezing rain...

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...FREEZING RAIN ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 7 PM FRIDAY TO 1 PM EST
SUNDAY...
...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IS CANCELLED...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN INDIANAPOLIS HAS ISSUED A
FREEZING RAIN ADVISORY, WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 7 PM FRIDAY TO
1 PM EST SUNDAY. THE WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY HAS BEEN CANCELLED.

* TIMING...RAIN WILL BE MIXING WITH AND CHANGING TO FREEZING RAIN
  FRIDAY EVENING. A BRIEF MIX WITH SLEET OR SNOW IS ALSO POSSIBLE
  NORTH OF INTERSTATE 70 FRIDAY EVENING. FREEZING RAIN WILL
  CONTINUE THROUGH SATURDAY MORNING. AN ADDITIONAL ROUND OF
  FREEZING RAIN IS EXPECTED SATURDAY NIGHT AND SUNDAY MORNING.

* MAIN IMPACT...FREEZING RAIN WILL RESULT IN HAZARDOUS TRAVEL
  CONDITIONS... ESPECIALLY ON BRIDGES... OVERPASSES AND UNTREATED
  ROADS. ICE ACCUMULATION UP TO 0.15 TO 0.20 INCHES IS POSSIBLE.

* OTHER IMPACTS...BRIEF SLEET OR SNOW COULD ALSO CAUSE VERY
  SLICK ROADS.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY MEANS THAT PERIODS OF SNOW... SLEET OR
FREEZING RAIN WILL CAUSE TRAVEL DIFFICULTIES. BE PREPARED FOR
SLIPPERY ROADS AND LIMITED VISIBILITIES...AND USE CAUTION WHILE
DRIVING.

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We need to watch areas of Indiana near the Hwy 50 corridor and points north for the possibility of a LIGHT glaze. Elevated surfaces like trees, decks, cars and power lines COULD see a few hundredths of ice. That's not much at all. I expect the roads to stay in good shape because pavements temperatures are running way above the freezing mark. It's tough to get a major ice event following such a warm stretch, which is good new for us. Usually we get icing following a deep freeze, not the other way around. Regardless, please use extra caution Friday night through Sunday morning if you plan on traveling in the areas under a winter alert. The images below show the rain and freezing rain moving across our area... 

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In addition, Crawford, Dubois, Orange, Perry may have to deal with slick spots early Friday morning. Light pockets of freezing rain may develop resulting in icy patches during the morning commute on bridges and overpasses. Jude Redfield will be on WDRB In The Morning to help keep you safe. 

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-Rick DeLuca

Rick

https://www.facebook.com/RickDeLucaWeather

Strong to Severe Storms Possible

A strong cold front is moving through the area this afternoon and the Storm Prediction Center has issued a marginal risk for severe weather for a portion of our area, along and northeast of the river. The main threats will be damaging gusty winds but there could also be heavy down pours and cloud to ground lightning. 

1-12 marginal risk

Remember, in order for a storm to reach severe criteria, the winds need to be 60 mph. This morning we have already seen a peak wind gust of 37 mph in downtown. A rogue strong to severe storm is definitely not out of the question for this afternoon and evening. 

1-12 peak wind gusts

In fact, as I was working on this blog, one strong storm worked its way through Orange, Washington and Dubois Counties, with wind gusts up to 50 mph. So not severe, but strong. In comparison to the peak wind gust of this morning though, that is only 13 miles per hour faster. Just shows how gusty it has been in the past few days. 

1-12 radar

As previously mentioned, this line of showers and storms is being ushered through by a cold front. It will be pretty fast moving and will extend through the area from our NE to SW. Following the front, temps will sharply drop. 

1-12 radar zoomed out

Showers and storms have already begun to push through our NW counties and are approaching the metro area. HRRR was spot on with the timing today (maybe a half hour early at best). The main line will be intense, but pretty brief and drop around a half an inch of rain.  

1-12 AT 1

For metro expect the line of storms around 2-4 pm with the same threats. 

1-12 AT 230

1-12 AT 330

For the end of the work day, the front will be jetting through the viewing area and be in our SE KY counties. 

1-12 AT 530

The worst will be over by this evening, but there could still be a few scattered showers around the area. 

1-12 AT 830

By tonight, many of us will be cloudy, with a few isolated showers at best and MUCH COOLER. 

1-12 AT 81230

We are currently at 70 degrees (only 2 degrees off of the record high for today set back in 1916) but we will see temperatures dramatically fall through the day.  I mean- CHECK OUT THAT LINE! It is very easy to pick out the front below. 

1-12 temp change

By the end of the work day, it will be substantially cooler, but there will still be a ways to go. Our low tonight will be around freezing. 

1-12 HOUR BY HOUR

As you probably know, we are not done with the wet weather yet . . . or anytime soon. In fact, with the dramatically falling temperatures and more precipitation in the forecast for tomorrow and this weekend, we have the potential for some minor icing. Marc and Rick will explain that in greater detail tonight on WDRB News. Be sure to join them. 

If any of the storms become severe, we will be the first to let you know! A great way to get weather information on the go is on social media. The links to my pages are below. 

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Katie McGraw's Twitter Page

-Katie McGraw 

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Gusty Storms Developing Now

From Jude Redfield...

    The latest radar (image below) as of 10:31 am shows rain and storms breaking out in central Indiana. 

TempPlunge

    Gusty winds ahead of the front are near 30mph and will continue like this through the afternoon. Winds behind the front are breezy, but not nearly as strong.

Shoes

At 10am our temp is 67. We are headed to near 70 which is very close to a record high.  We will barely miss breaking a record today.

Rainamounts

Temps

    Storms should stay below severe limits today, but gusty strong storms with winds in excess of 45mph are likely as the arctic boundary moves south.

ChristmasTree

The rain chances are the highest between noon and 6pm.

Headlines

RadarHelp

    Rain chances dwindle later tonight as the cold front moves into Tennessee.

Roster

    Make sure to watch Katie, Marc and Rick this afternoon for the latest info regarding our risk for freezing drizzle and freezing rain as we head into Friday.  Brace for a MAJOR temperature drop tomorrow with temps holding in the 30s all day. -Jude Redfield-

01/11/2017

FROST FEATHERS: How Do They Form?

It all started on a stormy Tuesday evening as a round of rain moved through. Behind the rain, cold air rushed in by Wednesday morning. As skies temporarily cleared out and winds backed off, frost was able to form on many elevated surfaces.  This wasn't your ordinary frost as you can see in the picture below from Angela Watkins in Charlestown, IN. It had unusual designs and patterns that almost look like feathers...

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In order for these "frost flowers" to form, there must be impurities on the surface of the car. These impurities, such as dust, can act as condensation nuclei and guide the formation of frost patterns. Scraping frost can be annoying, but it's not so bad when you can admire it's beauty! If you ever have any pictures to share with us, please put them on our Facebook page or upload them to the WDRB Weather App. 

 

 

-Rick DeLuca

Rick

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