Living in Minnesota is like playing the Weather Lotto on a daily basis. "Will my home be damaged?" "Will beachball-size hail turn my vehicle into tapioca pudding?" "Will rain turn my commute into a slow-motion nightmare?"
Any hail greater than 1 inch in diameter is capable of damage. Edina saw 2 inch hail, golf ball-size, from Tuesday's severe "supercell" storm, which we tracked all the way from near Fargo. As mentioned above, the (severe) hail damage in Eden Prairie and Edina was the result of the combination of ping pong size hail and straight-line winds topping 60 mph turning those ice-chunks into tiny artillery shells.
Tip-offs that a storm is especially severe: nearly continuous lightning (non-stop static on your AM radio) - and a "shelf cloud": an ominous, low-hanging, shovel-like appendage, which suggests potentially damaging straight-line winds. A Tornado Watch was posted Tuesday, another tip-off that storms could turn violent.
My best advice? Pay attention, to local media, NOAA web sites and smartphone apps. There are steps you can take to be more weather-aware.
A T-shower may sprout later today ahead of the next cool front, a push of (fresh!) air that may leave you rummaging for a sweatshirt Friday. Although cool for a dip in the lake, the sun should be out Saturday - showers may brush southern Minnesota Sunday. No 90s are brewing, but we may sample 80F next week. A/C optional.
Photo credit above: "The rear window was shattered on a new Chevy Cruze at Suburban Chevy, where every single car, (around 1000) were hail damaged at the Chevy store and nearby Metropolitan Ford in Eden Praire after yesterday's severe storms."
State of the Climate in 2012 Report available here.
Image credit above: "Wrangel Island, Chukchi Sea, in the early morning (left). Trees take hold as permafrost thaws near the Altai Mountains in Russia (right). These photos are from the covers of the 2012 State of the Climate Report, edited by scientists from NOAA's National Climatic Data Center and published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society." Photo Credit: Kate Stafford, Sergey Kirpotin - Tomsk State University, Terry Callaghan - EU-Interact
Image credit above: Dan Pisut / NOAA Environmental Visualization Lab. "Surface temperatures in 2012 compared with the temperature average from 1981 to 2010."
Image credit above: "DefCon and Black Hat highlight the fact that companies often seem more concerned about the appearance of security rather than the reality." (Photo: Shutterstock)
Photo credit: "A ScanEagle in service with the US Army." (Image: Boeing).
Photo credit above: "By September 2012, sea-ice cover in the Arctic had fallen to its lowest level since the beginning of satellite records." Photo: Steven J Kazlowski/Alamy.
Image credit above: "The top map shows global temperatures in the late 21st century, based on current warming trends. The bottom map illustrates the velocity of climate change, or how far species in any given area will need to migrate by the end of the 21st century to experience climate similar to present." Courtesy Stanford University.
Surveys that measure the public’s views on evolution, climate change, the big bang and even the idea that the Earth revolves around the sun yield a huge gap between what science tells us and what the public believes.But contrary to what many scientists think, more information doesn’t necessarily lead to the public accepting the scientific view: Take climate change. The battle over global warming has raged for more than a decade, with experts still stunned by the willingness of their political opponents to distort scientific conclusions. They conclude, not illogically, that they’re dealing with a problem of misinformation or downright ignorance — one that can be fixed only by setting the record straight..."