Slight Risk of Severe Weather

Bill’s Blog

Posted: May 31, 2020 / 06:40 AM EDT Updated: Jun 2, 2020 / 09:46 AM EDT

This is the Severe Weather Outlook Map from the Storm Prediction Center for this PM/tonight (Tue. night). Much of Lower Michigan is included in the Slight Risk Area (yellow on the map). The higher Enhanced Risk Area (in orange) runs from S. Dakota, through S. Minnesota and Wisconsin to Lake Michigan. The main threat will be isolated strong winds. SPC says:

 Severe thunderstorms are expected later today from the middle Missouri and upper Mississippi Valleys into the Great Lakes. Damaging wind gusts, large hail and a couple of tornadoes are possible, with the greatest threat expected from southern Minnesota/northern Iowa into central Wisconsin This activity should propagate across southern WI into lower MI after sunset.
 
The Grand Rapids National Weather Service says: "THE MOST LIKELY SCENARIO IS THAT WE SEE CONVECTION DEVELOP UPSTREAM IN THE LATE AFTERNOON AND EVENING, SURGING INTO WEST MICHIGAN AFTER DARK AND OVERNIGHT. THE MAIN THREAT LOOKS TO BE WIND WITH BOWING SEGMENTS. THIS TIME OF YEAR THE LAKE CAN BE TAKEN OUT OF PLAY IN A WEAKENING MODE DUE TO THE STRENGTH OF THE COLD POOL OF AIR OVER THE LAKE. ESSENTIALLY, THE CONVECTION RIDES UP AND OVER THE COLD LAYER DUE TO ITS STRENGTH AND MAINTAINS INTENSITY. THESE EVENTS CAN ALSO PRODUCE SOME OF OUR STRONGER WIND GUSTS RIGHT NEAR THE SHORELINE AS THE STORMS DOWNSLOPE OFF THE COLD DOME. THE THREAT FOR SEVERE IS CONTINGENT ON HOW MUCH INSTABILITY CAN WORK IN FROM THE WEST DURING THE AFTERNOON AND EVENING HOURS. BOTTOM LINE A THREAT FOR STRONG THUNDERSTORM WINDS EXISTS TONIGHT AND WE WILL BE MONITORING CONDITIONS AND MODEL TRENDS THROUGH THE COURSE OF THE DAY". 
SPC Tornado Risk this Tuesday PM/Night

This map shows the SPC risk of a tornado within 25 miles of a given point this (Tue.) PM/night. We have just a 2% chacne (very low) in Lower Michigan, with a higher chance (5% over Wisconsin).

SPC Chance of Wind Damage this PM/night

The map above is the chance of damaging wind within 25 miles of a given point this (Tue.) PM/night. We have a 30% chance across SE Minnesota, far N. Iowa and a large portion of Wisconsin with a 15% chance across much of Lower Michigan.

We’ll be tracking the storms this evening and tonight with the best chance of storms here in West Michigan coming after sunset and maybe not until after midnight.

In the meantime, look for a breezy and warmer day. At 9 am, we were already warmer than we were all day yesterday and temperatures inland will reach the mid 80s today with a brisk southwest wind. It’ll be a good 10 degrees cooler near Lake Michigan. Water temperatures this morning include 67 at Reeds Lake in East Gr. Rapids and 57 at the Port Sheldon buoy near Holland. There is a Beach Hazards Statement and Small Craft Advisories for Lake Michigan until 2 pm. We’ll also have to watch for the water level of Lake Michigan to rise a small amount if thunderstorms push some wind out as they cross Lake Michigan tonight.

Any lingering showers/storms clear out early tomorrow (Wed.) and the next chance of a shower will come Friday with the next cool front. The weekend looks mostly sunny and pleasant (like last weekend).