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Early Morning Storms on July 23rd, 2008 Produce Damaging Downburst Winds and Large Hail

A National Weather Service Storm Survey Team from the Binghamton Forecast Office traveled to Onondaga and Oneida county on July 24th to investigate damage that occurred early on July 23rd.

Large hollow tree blow over. Mcconnellsville. The most extensive damage was found in Oneida county in the Mcconnellsville and Lee Center areas. In the Mcconnellsville area downburst winds estimated around 70 mph with a peak gust of 90 to 100 mph which struck shortly after 5:00 AM in the morning. The winds tore down hundreds of trees and sent dumpsters and other small objects sailing through the air. It moved a car and tore up some roofing.

Another strong downburst struck the lee center area about 5:30 AM with estimated peak winds of 80 to 95 mph. The winds took another hundred trees down, blew out the wall of the DPW garage and destroyed a shed. Many of the trees fell damaging homes and other buildings.

The downburst patterns were defined by strong damaging winds that fan out in a divergent pattern. This pattern was very clearly divergent. The winds are also referred to as straight-lined. Trees and debris are thrown in a straight-line versus a swirling or convergent pattern that is indicative of a tornado.

The survey team also tracked the storm east through Stokes, Steuben and Remsen and only found very scattered areas with isolated damage to trees. The team also checked areas in Onondaga county from Plainville to Baldwinsville and over to Brewerton and only saw isolated tree damage and signs of large hail. Large hail was reported in both Onondaga and Oneida counties with these storms.

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Page last modified: July 26, 2008
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