Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Moore Tornado - One Year Anniversary May 20th

It was one year ago today that the town of Moore Oklahoma was devastated by a massive EF5 tornado. The tornado injured up to 377 people, killing 24, including seven children at Plaza Towers Elementary School. Winds exceeded 210 mph and the tornado reached an incredible width of 1.3 miles wide. The storm destroyed 1,150 homes and caused $2 billion in damages. The people of Moore are still recovering a year later.

A true monster of a storm. The tornado grew fast from it's small funnel to it's mile wide mass of swirling debris and clouds. The video below shows how quickly this storm grew!

The next video is a time lapse view of the tornado from a news helicopter. Watch as the black behemoth rides across the flat lands of Oklahoma connecting the dark sky to the green land. 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Fire Tornadoes in California! 5/15/2014

It's not every day you see a swirling mass of fire spinning violently up from the ground but today was the day in California! As the unusual wildfire storms just north of San Diego, this spectacular and extremely dangerous situation was caught on tape! 
This video was taken in San Marco, CA. Although fire season is usually later in the year, the extensive and extreme drought the state has been suffering though has resulted in an extremely early fire season. As seen below in the US Drought Monitor, the whole state is in extreme to exceptional drought conditions. 
With extreme drought like this, fire season is going to be long and damaging! 

Now what is a fire tornado? Also known as a fire whirl, fire devils and firenadoes. These small vortexes form within wildfires when extreme heat combine with strong winds to produce eddies that carry flames into the air like a small tornado. Most fire tornadoes are one to three feet wide, reaching up to 100 feet tall. However, there have been occurrences when the whirlwinds have gotten up to a 1,000 feet wide! Since the fire whirl is formed from the extreme heat of a small area, temperatures become a factor in these micro storms. Inside the core of the fire tornado, temperatures can reach an incredible 2,000 degrees F! 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Tornado Takes a Beach Day Part 2 - Myrtle Beach July 6, 2001

Like the water spout that came ashore in Carolina Beach on August 18, 2011. This water spout rides directly along the shore, ruining every one's beach day! It's as if the tornado is going for a jog down the beach. Watch as it grows, gathering sand and water into it's funnel. Since the video is from 2001, it is kind of grainy but still impressive! 

The tornado moves up the coast and past the high rise condo that the observer is recording the film. Although this video is older, it still zooms in enough to see the swirling vortex at an unusually close vantage point!  

Although impressive, its good to see no one on the beach. This storm is fairly strong and could have seriously hurt or even killed anyone on the beach! 

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Italy Tornado Get's Awfully Close! (video)

Check out this amazing video out of Italy! A weak tornado formed on April 30, 2014 and was caught on camera from a workplace. Watch as the tornado swirls just outside the large glass windows of the building, snapping trees and glass. The workers rush to find cover near the center of the building but that's pretty much all they did right! However, you can't really blame them, tornadoes are not as common in Italy as in, say Oklahoma!

Although tornadoes are no strangers to the country of Italy, the frequency is not as great as it is in Tornado alley in the United States. On average all of Europe sees about 300 tornadoes every year. Compare that to the 1,274 tornadoes annually in the United States!

Thankfully the people in the office building are ok and they have some great footage but let's hope they learn to drop the camera next time and seek shelter!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Climate Model Turned Into Stamp! (video)

This is pretty cool! On Earth Day, April 22, 2014, "the U.S. Postal Service officially unveiled a new Forever international-rate stamp inspired by a simulation of sea surface temperatures from a NOAA model of the Earth's climate."

I'm no stamp collector but this would be something cool to have! Turning computer models, and science into art is always interesting! Maps themselves are really part art and part science! Visual representation is great for sharing information but also allows for readers interpretation, which can result in art!  

Check out the video below of how the computer model was transformed into the stamp! 

Friday, May 2, 2014

Baltimore Urban Landslide! (Video)

When you think landslide, you probably think a sludge of mud sliding down the side of some remote mountain but you probably don't think one could happen right in the heart of a city!

This week the east coast of the U.S. experienced  a complete deluge of spring rain as a slow moving storm system moved from west to east. Many ares from the Mid-Atlantic to Southern New England saw 3-5 inches of rain in a 30 hour period. In fact Central Park in NYC saw an amazing 5.12" of rain! That's more than a whole months worth of rain!

Even though the rain was very impressive and many areas experienced flooding, what took the top spot on most news channels was the urban landslide in Baltimore, Maryland! In the Charles Village neighborhood of Baltimore, on 26th street a retaining wall gave out under the pressure of the heavy rain. This caused the wall, sidewalk, street and cars to fall 75 feet to the train tracks below!

This incredible urban landslide was even caught on camera! The video below is incredible yet scary at the same time!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Saturday Evening Post - Weather Obsession!

Normally when I hear 'Saturday Evening Post' I think of the iconic Christmas paintings by Norman Rockwell or his other great iconic work. So it was a surprise to see a really cool image circling the net (mostly Twitter) that held the Saturday Evening Post trademark. 

This image was an illustration focused on the weather! The cover to the infamous magazine's May/June 2014 edition features an illustration of a man climbing to a ledge to look at a tornado and a giant tidal wave! 

The article associated with the really cool cover is titled "Weather Obsession what's Behind the Fascination with Forces Beyond Out Control?" 

I actually liked the cover so much, I took a screen shot of it and use it as my wallpaper on my phone! I'll hopefully will be getting to the store soon to buy a hard copy of this awesome issue! 

What do you think of the cover?