Sunday, 22 January 2012
Southeast Louisiana EF-3 Tornado on May 26, 2011: An Examination of Synoptic Scale Features, Severe Weather Parameters, and Radar Evolution
Hall E (New Orleans Convention Center )
An extremely active spring for severe weather across Louisiana and much of the Southeast produced a record-breaking number of tornadoes in 2011. On May 26th a seemingly marginal threat existed across the Southeast for severe weather. The synoptic scale and mesoscale environment did not resemble anything more significant than a “low-end” severe weather threat. During the afternoon hours, however, an isolated tornadic storm rapidly developed across the “Florida parishes” of Southeast Louisiana. This particular storm produced a tornado near Bush, Louisiana that has since been surveyed and diagnosed as an EF-3 by the NWS.
Several aspects of the overall synoptic scale pattern in addition to the mesoscale environment are examined in this presentation. Severe weather parameters and radar evolution near the time of tornadogenesis are also examined. Several smaller scale features and cell merger interactions likely played a significant role in tornadogenesis. These will also be examined in the presentation and compared to similar past cases.