Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Phoenix, AZ

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000
NOUS45 KPSR 221951
PNSPSR
CAZ030-032-230800-

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PHOENIX AZ
1251 PM MST WED APR 22 2015

...DESERT CENTER TORNADO RATED EF0...

AT APPROXIMATELY 315 PM PDT ON APRIL 21 2015 AN ISOLATED
THUNDERSTORM RAPIDLY DEVELOPED OVER CENTRAL RIVERSIDE COUNTY IN THE
GENERAL VICINITY OF DESERT CENTER. AT APPROXIMATELY 350 PM PDT THE
THUNDERSTORM DEVELOPED SOME INDICATIONS OF MARGINALLY SEVERE
CHARACTERISTICS FOR ABOUT 10 MINUTES BASED ON DOPPLER RADAR IMAGERY
FROM THE DISTANT RADAR SITE LOCATED IN YUMA AZ. BECAUSE OF THE
DISTANCE FROM THE RADAR TO THE STORM THE RADAR WAS NOT ABLE TO VIEW
THE ATMOSPHERE BELOW ABOUT 10000 FEET ABOVE GROUND LEVEL IN THE
VICINITY OF THE STORM. A SIGNIFICANT WEATHER ADVISORY WAS ISSUED
SHORTLY AFTERWARDS TO ADDRESS THIS STORM AND INDICATED IT WAS MOVING
TOWARDS THE NORTH AT 5 MPH.

WITHIN TWO HOURS AFTER THE STORM THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN
PHOENIX BEGAN TO RECEIVE PHOTOS AND VIDEOS FROM THE PUBLIC VIA SOCIAL
MEDIA INDICATING A POSSIBLE TORNADO IN THE VICINITY. IN ADDITION...A
PILOT REPORT WAS LATER RELAYED TO THE NWS INDICATING A PILOT SPOTTED
A TORNADO IN THE VICINITY AT THAT TIME. AFTER VIEWING THESE
MATERIALS AND REPORTS WE CONFIRMED THE STORM AS A TORNADO AND
INITIALLY PLACED ITS LOCATION NEAR CA STATE HIGHWAY 177 JUST TO THE
EAST OF JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK. HOWEVER...AFTER CAREFULLY
REVIEWING VIDEO IT APPEARS THAT THIS TORNADO WAS A LANDSPOUT
TORNADO...MEANING IT DID NOT FORM FROM A MESOCYCLONE...AND LIKELY
FORMED OVER THE EXTREME SOUTHEAST PORTION OF JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL
PARK OVER THE COXCOMB MOUNTAINS AND MOVED TOWARDS THE SOUTHWEST INTO
THE CHUCKWALLA VALLEY AT A SLOW SPEED...LIKELY 5 TO 10 MPH.

THE NWS OFFICE SUBSEQUENTLY RECEIVED SOME INITIAL DAMAGE REPORTS
FROM A SOLAR ENERGY SITE LOCATED IN THE CHUCKWALLA VALLEY 8 MILES
NORTH OF INTERSTATE HIGHWAY 10. THE SITE REPORTED NUMEROUS INSTANCES
OF BROKEN WINDOWS AND DESTROYED SOLAR PANELS DUE TO ROCKS BEING BLOWN
INSIDE OF THE TORNADO. WE HAVE NOT BEEN ABLE TO ASCERTAIN EXACT TIMES
OR THE PRECISE TRACK FOR THE LANDSPOUT TORNADO SO WE HAVE HAD TO
ESTIMATE THESE BASED ON THE VERY LIMITED RADAR COVERAGE AND THE FEW
VIDEOS THAT WERE MADE OF THE EVENT. IN ADDITION...BASED ON THE DAMAGE
INFORMATION THAT WAS PASSED TO OUR OFFICE WE HAVE SET A PRELIMINARY
STRENGTH OF EF0 TO THIS TORNADO.

FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING OUR ESTIMATED TRACK OF THE
TORNADO...PUBLIC SUPPLIED VIDEOS AND PHOTOS...AND SUPPORTING
METEOROLOGY DATA SUCH AS RADAR...PLEASE VISIT OUR WEBPAGE AT:

HTTP://WWW.WRH.NOAA.GOV/PSR/PNS/2015/APRIL/DESERTCENTER.PHP

A REVISED LOCAL STORM REPORT IS BEING SENT TO CORRECT THE INITIAL
REPORT THAT WAS SENT YESTERDAY.


$$

WATERS



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