A wild evening of weather in Worcester was the exception last night, not the rule. There is a scale for tornado strength called the Enhanced Fujita Scale. The scale ranks these storms on a 6 point scale from 0 to 5. Last evenings storm was an EF0, but at the higher end of the scale. The National Weather Service estimated the storm reached winds at 85 miles per hour.
The storm was only on the ground for about 4 minutes from 8:10 to 8:14 and traveled under two miles. The storm’s damage was mostly to trees. There were several trees snapped about 40 to 50 feet above the ground. Other damage to buildings, including broken windows appears to have come from the trees being blown around, not directly from the wind.
In addition to the tornado, there was some flash flooding on several roads in and around the Worcester area. By the time the storm moved east it weakened and only produced a few light showers.
For those of you familiar with the Worcester area, the National Weather service reported the following: The initial touchdown occurred near the intersection of Perry Ave and Fairfax Road just to the east of Interstate 290 and north of Route 146. There was a well-defined narrow path of damage which ran about 1.7 miles.
The damage was seen just east of Saint Vincent Hospital and ended on Gordon Street just north of Hamilton Street and west of Harrington Way.
The tweet below has a nice image of the debris field and the tornado itself from the Doppler radar last evening. There are applications available for your smart phone where you can see these images as well. You can follow my forecasts on Twitter @growingwisdom
Today will be a much calmer day. The risk of rain is quite low, but not zero. If you do see a shower or thunderstorm the rain will be heavy to torrential.
Highs today will again be in the 80s. Humidity levels will be very high with dew points in the upper 60s to near 70 all day. The high levels of humidity will prevent temperatures from falling very much overnight which means another uncomfortable night for sleeping.
Tuesday brings a cold front through the area late in the day and overnight. This front will act as the focal point for more showers and storms late in the afternoon and evening. Some of these storms could be strong and I’ll be watching for severe weather possibilities.
Humidity levels are going to fall to more comfortable levels during Wednesday. While it still will feel a bit muggy at sunrise, I believe it will feel much more comfortable during the evening.
The rest of the week and into the start of the weekend will be warm and dry. Have a great Labor Day.