WX History: August 9th

1878: The second deadliest tornado in New England history struck Wallingford, Connecticut, killing 34 persons, injuring 100 others, and completely destroying thirty homes. The tornado started as a waterspout over a dam on the Quinnipiac River. It was 400 to 600 feet wide and had a short path length of two miles. The deadliest New England tornado occurred in 1953 when an F4 killed 90 people in Worcester, Massachusetts.

Aug 9, 1878 Wallingford Tornado
Artist’s conception of the tornado damage from the Wallingford Tornado of 1878. The illustration was first published in Harper’s Weekly, 1878.

Source: The Great Wallingford Tornado – Connecticut History.org

1969: An F3 tornado hit the northern suburbs of Cincinnati, Ohio, killing four people. The tornado moved in a southeasterly direction at 40 to 50 mph.

1992: An F2 tornado caused significant damage to the town of Chester, South Dakota shortly after 7 pm CDT. Four businesses were destroyed, three others had major damage, and five had minor damage. An elevator and new grain bin were leveled, and another bin was heavily damaged. Most of the building housing the fire department was demolished. In one instance a steel beam was thrust through a garage and into the car inside. One mile north of Chester, an entire house was moved off the foundation. The town had to be evacuated for 19 hours after the tornado because the tornado damaged a 12,000-gallon ammonia tank releasing 4,000 gallons of the liquid gas into the air. To the south of Chester, the storm destroyed a new convenience store and blew two fuel tanks over 100 yards.

2009

2017

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WX History: August 8th

1874: Swarms of Rocky Mountain locust invaded Denver, Colorado. Millions were seen cruising through the air. The insects were apparently picked up by a thunderstorm gust front and carried into the city. The grasshoppers ravaged crops in surrounding counties for the last month.

Aug 8, 1874 The Year of the Locust
A Kansas farm family fights a losing battle with the relentless “hoppers” in a cartoon by 19th-century illustrator Hanry Worrall. From the Kansas State Historical Society.

Source: 1874: The Year of the Locust. Historynet.com.

2007: A tornado bounces across Staten Island and Brooklyn, New York, ripping off roofs and damaging dozens of buildings. The EF-2 twister hop-scotched through Brooklyn’s Bay Ridge and Sunset Park neighborhoods around 6:30 am.

Aug 8, 2007 Brooklyn NY Tornado Info

Source: Storm Data for August 2007.

WX History: August 7th

1924: A tornado caused estimated F4 damage as it moved southeast from south of Osseo, WI to Black River Falls, WI. One person was killed as a home was leveled and a boy was killed running to the storm cellar near the start of the path. Two people died as farm homes were swept away near the northeast edge of Black River Falls. The tornado followed the present route of Interstate 94.

Source: Wisconsin Historical Society.

1980: Hurricane Allen bottomed out at 899 millibars (26.55 inches of mercury) while moving through the Yucatan Channel in the southeastern part of the Gulf of Mexico. Allen was the second lowest pressure ever recorded in the Western Hemisphere up to that time. Allen’s winds at the time were sustained at 190 mph.

Aug 7, 1980 Hurriacane Allen
Hurricane Allen on August 7th, 1980. The image is courtesy of NOAA.

2010: An EF4 tornado touched down south of Tyler in Richland County North Dakota and tracked to the northeast for roughly 2.5 miles before crossing the Bois de Sioux River into Wilkin County, Minnesota. In Wilkin County, the tornado continued for another 2.5 miles and lifted about 650 pm CDT. The total track length was about 5 miles, and peak winds were estimated at 175 mph.

WX History: August 6th

1918

1959: Hurricane Dot crossed Kauai in the Hawaiian Islands producing sustained winds of 105 mph with gusts to 125 mph. Over 6 inches of rain fell with over 9 inches on the big island of Hawaii. The sugar cane crop on Kauai sustained $2.7 million in damages.

August 6, 1959 Hurricane Dot

1993: Virginia experienced its worst tornado outbreak ever as 18 tornadoes ripped through the state in 5 hours. The most devastating tornado caused severe damage in the historic part of Petersburg. The storm then moved onto Pocahontas Island and into Colonial Heights. There, the storm ripped apart a WalMart store, killing three people and injuring nearly 200. The F4 twister was the first known violent tornado in Virginia history. It killed a total of 4 people and injured 246 along its 12-mile path. Total damages were near $50 million.

Source: History Looks Back at Tri-Cities Tornado of 1993 by WTVR.

2015

 

WX History: August 5th

1843: A spectacular cloudburst near Philadelphia turned the small creeks and streams entering the Delaware River into raging torrents. According to David Ludlum, as much as sixteen inches of rain fell in just three hours. Flooding destroyed thirty-two county bridges and caused nineteen deaths. It is believed that several small tornadoes accompanied the torrential rains, one of which upset and sank more than thirty barges on the Schuylkill River.

Source: Great Rain Storm and Flood – Delaware County History.

1875: Several tornadoes moved across northern and central Illinois. One of the stronger tornadoes touched down in Warren and Knox County where it destroyed 25 homes and killed two people. Another in a series of tornadoes touched down near Knoxville and moved east into northern Peoria County. This estimated F4 tornado injured 40 people and was described by eyewitnesses as looking like a “monstrous haystack.”

Aug 5, 1875 Macomb Torndado Damge
The image above was Fisher Foundry in Macomb, IL. The image is courtesy of the Archives and Special Collections at Western Illinois University Libraries.

Source: Archives and Special Collections, Western Illinois University Libraries.

1980: Hurricane Allen was one of the most intense hurricanes ever observed in the Atlantic. On this date, the hurricane reached Category 5 status for the first of three times during its long path across the Atlantic as reconnaissance aircraft measured 911 millibars (26.90 inches of mercury) pressure in the eastern Caribbean while south of Puerto Rico.

2017

 

WX History: August 4th

1609: Sir Thomas Gates, future governor of Virginia, was on his way to England from Jamestown. On Saint James Day, while between Cuba and the Bahamas, a “most terrible and vehement storm” raged for 44 hours. One of the small vessels in the fleet sank to the bottom of the Florida Straits. Four of the remaining vessels reached Virginia soon after the storm…followed a few days later by three other ships. The flagship, known as Sea Adventure, disappeared and was presumed lost. A small bit of fortune befell the ship and her crew when they made landfall on Bermuda. Although the vessel was damaged on a surrounding coral reef, all survived and spent ten months on the unsettled isle. The Spaniards, though shipwrecked on the island many times, had failed to colonize there. The British claimed the island and quickly settled the subtropical isle. In May 1610, they set forth for Jamestown, this time arriving at their destination. This near catastrophe likely provided the inspiration and background for William Shakespeare’s play, The Tempest.

Source(s): BBC.CO.UK and Virginia Hurricane History from the Weather Prediction Center.

1882: A vivid aurora was visible from Oregon to Maine, down the east coast as far as Mayport, FL, and inland as far as Wellington, KS. Observers at Louisville, KY noted “merry dancers” across the sky, and observers at Saint Vincent, MN noted it was probably the most brilliant ever seen at that location.

Aug 4, 1882 Auroras

Source: Monthly Weather Review.

2008: Severe storms moved across northern Illinois and Indiana with tornadoes and stiff winds reported. With tornado sirens blaring, the game at Wrigley Field between Cubs and Astros was stopped as fans were told to evacuate to the lower concourse. Passengers at O’Hare International Airport were evacuated to lower levels of buildings as well. An estimated 350 flights were canceled.

Source: NWS Office in Chicago, Illinois.

2009: The strongest tornado to hit Quebec since the same date in 1994 ripped through Mont-Laurier. The F2 tornado tore through the small western Quebec town severely damaging about 40 homes. Two men were taken to the hospital with minor injuries.

Source: Tornado slams Quebec’s Mont-Laurier – CBCNEWS

2017

WX History: August 3rd

1874: The crew of a Union fleet witnessed a waterspout move right past their ship, causing no damage, in Albemarle Sound, North Carolina.

Aug 3, 1864 Albemarle Sound Waterspout
Grand Water-Spout in Albemarle Sound, August 3, 1864. Harper’s Weekly.

Source: Civil War Harper’s Weekly, Published on September 10, 1864.

1885: A tornado causing estimated F3 damage hit Philadelphia and Camden along its eight-mile path.Aug 3, 1885 Philadelphia Tornado

Source: Millheim Journal. volume (Millheim, Pa.), 06 Aug. 1885. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress

1970: Hurricane Celia was the costliest tropical cyclone in Texas history until Hurricane Alicia in 1983. Hurricane Celia made landfall near Port Aransas as a major Hurricane, Category 3 on the Saffir-Simpson scale with sustained winds of 130 mph.

Source: NWS Office in Corpus Christi, Texas.

1997

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2017

WX History: August 2nd

1896

 

1985: An aircraft accident occurred at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport at approximately 6:00 p.m. Neither the crew nor air traffic control was aware that below what appeared to be a rather insignificant thunderstorm existed a strong downdraft of cold, dense air. Upon final approach, the pilot of the Lockheed L-1011 ran into the microburst and was unable to lift out of it. He lost control of the aircraft, hitting several objects on the ground before finally crashing into a water tank near the runway. 133 people were killed, and 31 were injured.

Source: WFAA.com

1995

 

2006: Johannesburg, South Africa residents see snow flurries for the first time in at least eight years.

August 2, 2006 South Africa Snow Source: NASA’s Earth Observatory.

2006

2015

The same storms that wrecked havoc in Michigan, also impacted southern Ontario. The intense storms caused nearly 50,000 customers to lose power.

Aug 2, 2015 Toronto Storm
The picture from CBCNEWS and was taken by Mike Talmage.

Source: CBCNEWS.

 

2017

WX History: August 1st

1983: During the early afternoon hours, a strong microburst swept across Andrews Air Force Base in Washington, D.C.  Although the base anemometer was not calibrated at extreme wind speeds, the peak gust hit 149 mph. It was reported that Air Force One, with President Reagan on board, landed 6 minutes before the peak gust.

Source: Capital Weather Gang

1985: A devastating flash flood and hailstorm struck Cheyenne, Wyoming during the evening of August 1st, 1985. Twelve people lost their lives and damage was estimated to be in excess of $65 million. The NWS Office in Cheyenne measured 6.06 inches in 24 hours. Hail, up to 2 inches in diameter pummeled parts of the city, reaching depths of nearly a foot deep. 

Aug 1, 1985 Cheyenne Flood

Source: Meteorological Analysis of the Cheyenne, Wyoming, Flash Flood and Hailstorm of 1 August 1985 – NOAA Technical Report.

1993

2017

2017

WX History: June 29th

1904: Tornado hits Karacharov Village area of Moscow killing about 24 people.

June 29, 1904 Russia Tornado

Source: Englishrussia.com

1998: A derecho which originated in far southeast South Dakota moved across Illinois during the afternoon and evening and continued as far east as Ohio the next morning. Every county in central Illinois sustained some damage, as these severe thunderstorms passed. Winds gusted in the 60 to 80 mph range, with some localized microbursts producing winds more than 100 mph. Significant damage occurred in the microburst areas, including the towns of Morton, McLean, LeRoy, and Tolono. In Tolono, 22 cars of a southbound 101-car Illinois Central freight train were blown off the tracks. It was unknown how many cars were picked up by the wind, but 16 cars were turned over, and another six derailed but remained upright. The train was en route to Centralia from Chicago with a load of mixed freight, including plastic pellets and meal. The freight cars empty weighed about 60,000 pounds, while a full one weighs about 260,000 pounds. Overall, 12 people were injured, and damage was estimated around $16 million dollars.

June 29, 1998 Corn Belt Derecho

Source: Storm Prediction Center.

2012

2017