Showers and Thunderstorms, 02/23-24

Gusty southerly winds blew throughout the afternoon hours Friday out ahead of a powerful low pressure system that pushed into the Central Plains States last night.  Peak southerly wind speeds measured by Automated Surface Observation Stations (ASOS) in the NWS-Topeka County Warning area Friday afternoon included:


Topeka, Billard Airport: 39 mph 

Concordia, Blosser Field: 48 mph

Topeka, Forbes Field: 40 mph

Lawrence Municipal Airport : 31mph

Manhattan Regional Airport: 43 mph

Emporia Municipal Airport: 40 mph


These southerly winds also helped to prime the atmosphere for evening shower and thunderstorm development, by driving warm moist air into the Plains. The lift generated by the low pressure system triggered convective development.  The gusty low-level winds, warm temperatures, and abundant low-level moisture over central Kansas helped keep the storms going throughout the night.  Early Friday evening, storms formed across southwestern Kansas and western portions of Oklahoma .  Hail up to an inch in diameter was reported in southwestern Kansas between 9pm and midnight, and two tornados were reported just after 10pm in Gray County- also in southwest Kansas.   A plot of storm reports created by the Storm Prediction Center from last evening can be found by clicking HERE.  As these thunderstorms moved eastward, they encountered dry air in place over northeast Kansas, and gradually weakened by early Saturday morning.  NWS-Topeka received scattered reports of pea-sized hail with some of the stronger storms, but no severe weather was reported across the northeast corner of the state. The region did receive a decent amount of rainfall. A graphical analysis of reports received from ASOS, cooperative observers, and storm spotters is located below. 


(Click on Image for Larger View) 





A text version can be found HERE.  Please note that the 1.95" amount at Tescott included small hail, which may account for the total being higher than recorded at nearby stations. This report was not included on the graphical analysis.



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