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"Long track" Tornado's

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Zathrus, May 1, 2017.

  1. Zathrus

    Zathrus Vindicator Member

    Sep 1, 2014
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    Hello all,

    I have always been interested in weather of all types, hence my lightning shots etc. When I went to university.. long ago... I put almost all of my "elective credits" (these are credits you must earn that are not dictated by your degree but they encourage something that compliments your degree) into Meteorology. I have been an amateur meteorologists ever since. I have enjoyed observing and studying severe thunderstorms most of my life. This was initially sparked in my teenage years where I spent about 7 years in the Congo near the equator. There, the thunderstorms are legendary in lightning intensity. It is very common for lighting in strong thunderstorms there to have a distinct blue hue. They literally have blue lightning at times.

    One beast of nature that has always fascinated me due to it's power, is the large EF3+ "long track" tornado. The amount of energy necessary to form and then sustain these powerful tornado's is enormous.

    Long Track tornado's are defined as a tornado that remains in contact with the ground continuously for a minimum of 25 miles (40km).

    I have to say, when I think about the frequency of long track tornado's today and compare it to what was taught in my university days as the frequency then (late 1978 thru 1981).... the frequency seems to be rising.

    Granted part of this is due to the increase in precision and physical number of equipment capable of recording these ferocious beasts mother nature periodically unleashes. But I suspect their number and/or the total sum of miles spent on the ground each year by long track tornado's is rising. I cannot find any research currently studying this potential variable. So I have contacted one scientist at weather.com I have consulted in the past and asked if anyone is looking at that data point?

    If I am correct, this would indicate a significant increase in the total energy available to these systems during their life cycle.

    The video below is becoming a fairly common type of tornado video today. This tornado formed yesterday (4/29/2017) in Texas and tracked continuously for more than 35 miles (56 km). It was deadly leaving at least 13 dead and dozens injured, but when you see the video below... this could have been much worse. It missed the largest town it passed near.

    The Woman at the end interviewed is very lucky to be alive... along with everyone else at that Honda dealership.

    ***Note the "Pirated from storm chasing video dot com" is how they keep people from stealing their stuff. This is linked directly to their youtube channel so it is LEGAL, no worries

    Not only is the power within these astonishing, they typically will travel along the ground at speeds ranging from 40mph (60 kph) to 80mph (128 kph) with the majority falling in the 45 (72 kph) to 65mph (104 kph) ground speeds. This is why they catch many who try to out run them in vehicles... it is unlikely you will outrun something moving at 65mph continuously as you try to navigate yourself away from it on roads. it is going to catch you quickly. Many of these large wedge tornado's can be multi vortex and a mile wide.... so... if your near it... look out.
    TheBTron likes this.
  2. psycho

    psycho Vindicator Member

    Sep 2, 2003
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    Crazy stuff, glad I don't live in that part of the country.

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