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Excessive Heat Continues Across the West

Dangerously hot temperatures are expected again for much of the Pacific Northwest and portions of the Southwest. Elsewhere, severe thunderstorms and heavy rain are possible across portions of New Mexico and southern High Plains. Read More >

It will be partly sunny today with a chance of showers and isolated thunderstorms across the west and south. Highs will be in the 80s with east winds 5 to 10 mph.
Mostly cloudy tonight with a chance of showers along and south of a Cisco to Hillsboro to Palestine line. Lows will be in the mid 60s to lower 70s with east to southeast winds around 5 mph.
There will be low chances of showers and thunderstorms across parts of North and Central Texas Monday through Thursday. Highs will be in the mid 80s to lower 90s and lows will be in the upper 60s to upper 70s.
There will be low chances of showers and thunderstorms across the mainly east of I-35 Friday and along and north of the I-20 corridor Friday night and Saturday. Highs will be in the lower to middle 90s and lows will be in the 70s.
Almost everyone picked up measurable (at least 0.01") rain late Friday and into Saturday across North and Central Texas. The big winners were generally west of I-35, where numerous locations picked up in excess of 1.5" of rain. DFW was a big winner as well, recording a daily rainfall record of 3.84"!
Yesterday's 3.84 inches of rain at DFW not only set a daily record for June 24th, but is also more than what we normally receive during the whole month of June. Yesterday's rainfall also put us slightly above normal for the year. So far this month, we have received 7.93 inches of rain which would make this the 5th wettest June in the 119 years of records for the official Dallas Fort Worth site. The top 4 wettest Junes are 11.58 in 1928, 11.10 in 2007, 10.49 in 2004, and 8.75 in 1989.
Yesterday's 3.31 inches of rain at Waco not only set a daily record for June 24th, but is also almost as much as we normally receive during the whole month of June. Yesterday's rainfall also put us 6.17 inches above normal for the year. So far this month, we have received 4.72 inches of rain which would make this the 25th wettest June in the 116 years of records for the official Waco site. The top 5 wettest Junes are 12.06 in 1961, 10.55 in 1927, 10.21 in 1938. 9.89 in 1919 and 8.76 in 2007.

 
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The Mayfest Storm: May 5, 1995

 Radar Loop              Meteorological Case Study

 

Storms Affecting Tarrant and Dallas Counties

During the late afternoon of May 5, 1995, a large cluster of severe storms approached the DFW Metroplex. These storms produced extremely large hail, damaging winds, and heavy rainfall as they passed over Tarrant County. The hail swath included the bank of the Trinity River where the outdoor festival, Mayfest, was in progress. The storms caused an estimated $2 billion in damages in Tarrant and Dallas counties. This event remains one of the costliest hail storms in history.

The storms struck Mayfest at 7:10 pm, where over 10,000 people were caught in the open with little shelter. Hail up to the size of softballs fell, resulting in over 400 injuries. There were no fatalities at the festival, although 60 people suffered serious injuries requiring hospitalization.

As the storms moved eastward, intense rainfall affected portions of Tarrant and Dallas counties. Rainfall rates approached 2.25 inches in 15 minutes over Dallas County and numerous reports of flash flooding were received. More than 350 cars sustained weather-related damage, including hail and water damage.
 

Fatalities

One person died in western Tarrant County when he drove into a swollen creek. Fifteen people died in Dallas County. Several of the victims drove into high water and were swept away by floodwaters. Two individuals fell into high water and drowned. Four other deaths were also reported in Dallas County, including two lightning-related fatalities and two others due to a heavy-rain induced roof collapse.
 

Community Planning and Preparedness

The Mayfest storms changed the way in which the local emergency management community and the National Weather Service communicate and collaborate to prepare for hazardous weather. As a result of these storms, the Tarrant County Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (R.A.C.E.S.) is now located on-site at outdoor events in and around Fort Worth to relay weather information and provide emergency support.

In the 20 years since the Mayfest storms, National Weather Service offices across the country have strengthened their partnerships with the emergency management community. Here in North Texas, the National Weather Service in Fort Worth provides hazardous weather briefings to emergency managers and public safety officials several days in advance of high-profile, high-attendance events.


Be Prepared!

Springtime brings plentiful sunshine and outdoor activities ranging from festivals to sporting events and other recreational activities. However, mostly sunny skies can give way to rapidly developing thunderstorms in some situations. Thunderstorms producing tornadoes, damaging winds, and large hail can occur throughout the year, but are most common in the spring months.

The National Weather Service works closely with the local media and emergency management community to plan and prepare for hazardous weather. However, you should take personal responsibility to keep your family safe. Pay close attention to weather forecasts. Be prepared to implement your safety action plan if watches or warnings are issued for your area.

Flash flooding is the number one weather-related killer, followed closely by lightning. Never drive into a water covered roadway. Do not allow children to play near creeks or streams since rapidly flowing water can continue to rise for several hours after the rain has stopped. Lightning can strike many miles away from the heavy rain and hail. As a general rule, move indoors when you first hear thunder and allow 30 minutes after the last rumble of thunder before heading outside. Hailstones and gusty thunderstorm winds can also be deadly.

If you are attending an outdoor festival or event, look for areas that can be accessed quickly if hazardous weather approaches. The best option is to seek shelter in a sturdy building, but vehicles can provide some safety from hail, winds, and lightning. You may also wish to look online for the event’s emergency action plan or ask event organizers.

NOAA All Hazards Weather Radios provide 24-hr access to hazardous weather information from your local National Weather Service office. Portable radio models, with prices starting at $30, allow you to stay up to date with the latest weather information when you’re on the go. For more information on NOAA All Hazards Weather Radios, visit https://www.weather.gov/nwr/.


Additional weather safety and preparedness information can be found at https://www.srh.noaa.gov/fwd/skywarn.

 

Pictures and more information from Storm Chaser, Sam Barricklow, are available here.


References:

NWS Storm Data – May 1995, Volume 37, Number 5

NWS Natural Disaster Survey Report: The Fort Worth-Dallas Hailstorm/Flash Flood of May 5, 1995. NWS Southern Region Headquarters. November 1995.

 

Special thanks to:

Sam Barricklow, K5KJ

Greg Patrick, NWS Southern Region Headquarters

Gary Woodall, NWS Memphis

 

Radar imagery
            from 6:44pm on May 5, 1995 shows the intense supercell west of Fort
            Worth moving east.

Above: Radar imagery from 6:44pm on May 5, 1995 shows the intense supercell west of Fort Worth moving east.

 

Radar imagery
            from 6:56pm shows a close-up of the Mayfest supercell centered west of
            Benbrook. The pink and darkest red colors represent radar indications of
            large hail with this storm. The storm impacted the Mayfest festival at
            7:10pm.

Above: Radar imagery from 6:56pm shows a close-up of the Mayfest supercell centered west of Benbrook. The pink and darkest red colors represent radar indications of large hail with this storm. The storm impacted the Mayfest festival at 7:10pm.

 

At 7:25pm, the
            Mayfest supercell storm was affecting much of the city of Fort Worth.
            The squall line to the west of the supercell storm was moving rapidly
            east and would eventually merge with the supercell. The resulting
            cluster of severe storms would later move into Dallas County.

Above: At 7:25pm, the Mayfest supercell storm was affecting much of the city of Fort Worth. The squall line to the west of the supercell storm was moving rapidly east and would eventually merge with the supercell. The resulting cluster of severe storms would later move into Dallas County.

 

At 8:12pm, the
            large, intense cluster of storms was beginning to move east of Fort
            Worth, but was affecting DFW Airport and the western side of the city of
            Dallas. Two inch diameter hailstones and wind gusts up to 70 mph were
            reported just east of DFW Airport.

Above: At 8:12pm, the large, intense cluster of storms was beginning to move east of Fort Worth, but was affecting DFW Airport and the western side of the city of Dallas. Two inch diameter hailstones and wind gusts up to 70 mph were reported just east of DFW Airport.