SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) Tornado watches are rare for our area. To have one in effect at night is doubly rare. We had that Sunday night. Fortunately, we escaped with no damage.
This system had 2 things going for it:
1. History – this storm had a large history of producing severe weather and damage on its trek across the country. There was an incredible amount of wind energy with this storm available to produce damage and possible tornadoes.
2. Big change in wind direction in the lower atmosphere – there was a warm front draped east to west across Central New York. At 11 p.m. Sunday evening, temperatures were in the mid 60s in Skaneateles and in the upper 30s near Lake Ontario!
This warm front in Central New York helped to set up east-southeast winds in the lower atmosphere last evening. This, coupled with fast west winds just above the ground, provided the necessary twisting and turning of wind in the atmosphere to increase the chance for a tornado.
Nothing happened? Why?
Remember a watch is issued when the ingredients are in place to produce severe weather. The two items I discussed above were two of the big reason why the watch was issued.
Going against the potential for severe weather for us was the fact that we were super warm and humid, and the thunderstorms were approaching in the middle of night. In the middle of a cooling atmosphere.
I noticed the lack of lightning with the line. My experience tells me this is indicative of a weakening line of storms.
Basically, the once strong line of storms, was falling apart right over us. That is why we ended up seeing some heavy rain and briefly gusty winds. The lightning and thunder was VERY limited.
In essence, we dodged a bullet. The report of severe weather shows damage to our west, south and east, but nothing in Central New York.