Moderate Risk of Severe Storms!

Bill’s Blog

Posted: Jun 10, 2020 / 02:45 AM EDT Updated: Jun 10, 2020 / 10:22 AM EDT

The Storm Prediction Center has upgraded the severe weather risk in the Southern Great Lakes. We now have a rare Moderate Risk Area (in red) for areas east of a line from Sturgis to Greenville to Oscoda. At this link – it seems to show that the last moderate risk for Lansing was Nov. 17, 2013. That was an incredible day for severe weather with 106 tornado reports and 598 total severe weather reports. Hardest hit that day were Lower Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio. The Enhanced Risk Area (in orange) has been moved west to the lakeshore at Holland. SPC says:

"Widespread severe thunderstorms are expected across portions of the Ohio Valley and lower Michigan region. Severe, damaging wind gusts are the main threat, though a few tornadoes and some hail threat are also possible...strongest 500mb flow rotates through the base of the trough into the downstream position over central IL by 18z, then southern lower MI by 11/00z (8pm)...modest boundary-layer heating ahead of the front, especially across IN into southern lower MI by 18z (2 pm)...widespread severe, damaging winds are expected, especially with line segments. Some tornado threat also will exist with supercell structures." 

The Grand Rapids NWS says:

STORMS ARE EXPECTED TO INITIATE BETWEEN NOON-2 PM THIS AFTERNOON IN FAR SOUTHWEST LOWER MI, THEN PROGRESS EAST INTO
THE LATE AFTERNOON AND EVENING BECOMING INCREASINGLY MORE WIDESPREAD, ESPECIALLY EAST OF US-131. OUR PRIMARY CONCERN FOR THESE STORMS WILL BE DAMAGING WINDS, ESPECIALLY WITH LINE SEGMENTS, BUT LARGE HAIL AND EVEN A FEW TORNADOES WILL BE POSSIBLE. 

10 am (Wed.) – It’s already up to 83 degrees at Grand Rapids, Battle Creek and Kalamazoo. The dewpoint is a high 72 – lots of heat and humidity to fuel the afternoon storms. The cold front is halfway through Illinois and will arrive in West Michigan right around peak heating time, when we should be in the upper 80s to near 90.

At 10 am, there are still 33,556 Consumers Energy customers without power from yesterday evening’s winds. They wont get all of those people on line before the winds hit later this afternoon. Right now, there are still 6,081 customers without power in Kalamazoo Co., 2,252 in Ottawa Co. and 3,006 in Manistee County.

And as of 10 am – there are a total of 51,056 customers without power in the entire state of Michigan – from Indiana to S. Ste. Marie (which had a gust to 46 mph last hour). That’s by far the most of any state (Wisconsin is second with 10,391) and Michigan could see the most power outages from the afternoon storms.

SPC map showing Tornado Risk for Wed. 6/10/20

The map above from the Storm Prediction Center shows the percent chance of a tornado within five miles of a given point. Most of Lower Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and a portion of northern Kentucky are in the +5% category. I’ve certainly seen higher…but +5% is a significant risk for the state of Michigan. Note this +5% risk extends back to Lake Michigan.

Map from the Storm Prediction Center showing the % chance of wind damage within 25 miles of a given point

This map from the Storm Prediction Center shows the % chance of wind damage or a +58 mph wind gust within 25 miles of a given point. There is a very significant 45% chance from Ionia to the east. The hatched area indicates at least a 10% chance of a wind gust to 75 mph or higher within 25 miles of a given point. The greatest and most common severe weather threat will be wind damage.

SPC map of the % chance of hail 1″ or greater in diameter within 25 miles of a given point

The map above shows the percent chance of a severe hail report (1″ or greater in diameter) within 25 miles of a given point. The +15% chance covers most all of Lower Michigan east to New York and Pennsylvania and south to Kentucky.

Click for latest Composite Reflectivity radar loop from the Grand Rapids/Muskegon, MI radar and current weather warnings
Grand Rapids radar

Here’s Grand Rapids radar (above) and regional radar (below)

Central Great Lakes sector loop
Go to: Most Recent Image

Here’s links to: The latest convective outlooks from the Storm Prediction Center, current meso-discussions, current severe thunderstorm and tornado watches, today’s storm reports, about tornadoes, current weather observations, the latest Grand Rapids NWS forecast discussion and the Detroit NWS forecast discussion.