Some of you have asked why I haven't written about the weather in the last couple of weeks (no, the sharknado doesn't count as weather). Aside from hurricanes and derechos, summer can be particularly dull when it comes to exciting bloggable weather, so there hasn't been much to write about.
However, there was one more reason I held off writing about something I was itching to get off my chest -- I was saving it for a guest post at the Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang blog. I'm excited and honored to be allowed to write a guest post for the blog I avidly read while going to high school in the Washington DC area.
The post is about how gaps in weather radar coverage can prove dangerous, as it can lead weather forecasters to miss tornadoes, and as a result, not issue a tornado warning.
On an active weather day, it takes about five to seven minutes for a NWS Doppler radar to complete a full sweep of the atmosphere from top-to-bottom (usually between 12 and 15 different levels) and release the data over the internet. These small, spin-up tornadoes can occur in between these radar sweeps, meaning they form and die undetected by forecasters until damage is reported. Often times in severe squall lines, and especially derechos, forecasters will issue tornado warnings along little “kinks” in the line in anticipation of these weak tornadoes.I kindly direct you to the Capital Weather Gang's site to read the rest. :)
These tornadoes can, on rare occasion, go undetected and unwarned, as was the case on March 3, 2012 near Charlotte, NC.