A Busier Day: Tornado, Funnel Cloud, & Cat 5 Hurricane

September 19, 2017

10pm Tuesday…

I thought yesterday was busy, but today was just plain crazy.  Back in the old days (20 years ago) I might have appeared on 1-3 TV newcasts per day, maybe with a radio hit or two as well.

Today I was in 6 newscasts, plus regularly tweeting, facebooking, & keeping up on other internet activities.  It can get crazy!

So today we had our 2nd Oregon tornado of the year (first was in central Oregon earlier in the year).  This one was east of Lacomb, which is well east of Lebanon.  Way out in rural Linn County.  It was a classic westside “barn-buster”;  No deaths, injuries, or damage to homes.  Just 4 barns damaged along with some trees.  An EF-0 is the weakest tornado one can get.  Thanks to the Portland NWS for all the hard work doing their storm survey.  Here are the results:


Here’s how it compares to some other recent tornadoes in our area

Tornado Categories

We received two different videos of funnel clouds both there and near Molalla.  So an exciting day.  I saw nothing on radar that showed much wind shear or rotation with the Lebanon storm.  Part of the reason (other than it was such a weak event) is that Lebanon is a long way from the Portland radar.  The lowest elevation radar beam is up around 9,000′ or even a little higher by the time it’s over Lebanon; that means it’s quite easy to miss rotation in the lower parts of the cloud.

Tornado Why We Cant See Eugene

Our very wet week continues, take a look at rain totals so far (since Sunday PM) in the Cascades…apparently models were right on showing 5-8″ in spots in the North Oregon Cascades

Mark Rain Cascades East Metro Today

Mark Rain Cascades East Metro Today2

And the rain has made it all the way down into south Cascades…very good.

Expect one more soaker tonight and then showers should taper off a little Wednesday afternoon.  Thursday will just be a light shower day.

By the way, it’s beautiful but deadly and dangerous…Category 5 Hurricane Maria is directly over the west end of St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands right now.


Wow, imagine a 175 mph wind.  Remember those gusts we feel up at Vista House in winter are maybe 100-120 at most.  Think what that storm is doing to the island right now.  It’s headed for Puerto Rico Wednesday.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen