Experimentation and Evaluation of Nearly Real-Time Tornado Tracks

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Tuesday, 6 January 2015: 5:15 PM
221A-C (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Kacie Nicole Shourd, NOAA/NSSL, Muncie, IN; and C. D. Karstens

This presentation will explore the verification of several methods and reasoning behind the on-going development of a new tool that will allow forecasters to create nearly real-time tornado damage paths. The potential for the future and advancement of this tool will also be discussed. The inspiration for this tool comes from the work of individuals from the Norman Weather Forecast Office (WFO) and a handful of other WFOs across the country. The most recent/notable of these are the tracks released by the Norman WFO immediately following both the Moore and El Reno tornadoes of May 2013. These tracks, made available in Geographic Information System (GIS) compatible formats, were sent to emergency and first responders immediately after the event. With a a real-time tornado track tool, any WFO across the nation would possess the capability to have tornado damage paths automatically or manually generated even while a storm is still in motion and the tornado is still on the ground. Early, precise knowledge of where a tornado occurs could lead to both earlier aid and more efficient rescues for disaster-stricken areas - an essential step for saving lives that otherwise might be lost.