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|Severe Weather Event
December 1st, 2006
A strong cold front pushed through Pennsylvania during the afternoon and evening of December 1st, 2006. This complicated event had many facets to it. First, severe windstorms preceeded and accompanied the front. The extremely strong winds aloft (see PIT sounding below) were easily mixed down to the surface in any convective activity.
A majority of the preliminary damage reports came with the multiple lines of thunderstorms as they blasted west to east at 50 to 70 mph across the region during the afternoon. Many reports of minor flooding were also received, with more serious flooding in places near Bloomsburg, Danville, Sunbury and Selinsgrove. The flooding subsided quickly.
The second phase of the storm ushered in very strong gradient (normal) winds as the storm deepened and moved to our east. Widespread reports of wind damage (mainly trees, and power- and telephone-wires down) came from all over Central PA - in places that never even had a thunderstorm that day - becoming strongest during the evening hours. Therefore, a High wind Warning was also necessary in addition to the shorter-lived Severe Thunderstorm Warnings (see the difference between these event types and warnings at: our Thresholds and Definitions page).
A Thunderstorm that hit around 4:15 pm did major damage just south of Halifax, PA on the Susquehanna River north of Harrisburg. A survey team investigated the damage, and the results follow below. This storm did produce a tornado, one of three on the day in PA, apparently the first tornadoes ever recorded in December in the state of Pennsylvania. The other PA Tornadoes that day were in central Westmoreland County around 11:30 am, and another in central Luzerne County around 5:30 pm.
Storm Damage Survey
Map of approximate damage swath in Northern Dauphin County, including F1 Tornado Damage.
NOUS41 KCTP 021946
PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE STATE COLLEGE PA
246 PM EST SAT DEC 2 2006
...F1 TORNADO CONFIRMED NEAR HALIFAX DAUPIN COUNTY...
A SURVEY TEAM FROM THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN STATE COLLEGE
AND THE DAUPHIN COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY TOURED THE
DAMAGE AREA SOUTH AND EAST OF HALIFAX TODAY. THE DAMAGE OCCURRED
DURING A THUNDERSTORM ON THE AFTERNOON OF FRIDAY DECEMBER 1ST
THE TEAM FOUND THAT THE DAMAGE WAS MAINLY STRIGHT-LINE WIND
DAMAGE...BUT THERE WAS EVIDENCE OF A TORNADO EMBEDDED IN THE
LARGER DAMAGE SWATH. THE TEAM ESTIMATED THE WINDS OF THE TORNADO
TO BE 100 TO 110 MPH...OR CATEGORY F1 ON THE FUJITA SCALE OF
TORNADO INTENSITY. THE TORNADO ITSELF WAS ON THE GROUND FOR 1.5
MILES AND WAS AT MOST 75 YARDS WIDE.
THE TOTAL SWATH OF WIND DAMAGE WAS APPROXIMATELY 8 MILES
LONG...RUNNING IN A NORTHEASTERLY DIRECTION. THE DAMAGE BEGAN NEAR
THE INTERSECTION OF SHAMMONS SCHOOL ROAD AND ROUTE 147 SOUTH OF
HALIFAX...WHICH IS ABOUT 1 MILE EAST OF THE SUSQUEHANNA
RIVER...AND RAN TO A POINT IN A WOODED AREA OF JACKSON
TOWNSHIP...NEAR THE TOWN OF ENDERS.
WITNESSES PLACED THE TIME OF DAMAGE AROUND 415 PM EST.
ONE FATALITY OCCURRED AT THE INTERSECTION OF ROUTES 225 AND 147
WHEN A TREE FELL ON A CAR AT THE INTERSECTION. NO OTHER INJURIES
ARE KNOWN AT THIS TIME.
DAMAGE TO BUILDINGS INCLUDED 2 BUSINESSES AND 1 RESIDENCE WITH
MAJOR DAMAGE...4 RESIDENCES WITH MODERATE DAMAGE...AND 25 TO 30
RESIDENCES WITH MINOR DAMAGE. THOUSANDS OF TREES WERE ALSO FELLED
DUE TO THE STRONG WINDS...AND THE EMBEDDED TORNADO.
Picture of damage around Routes 147 and 225 from the air (Photo courtesy Dr. John Scala). (Click for VERY big pic)
2006 Weather Events/Features:
- Mini Severe Weather Event (Bow Echoes), March 13th.
- Hail Storms of April 3rd
- May 1st, 2006 - Tussey Mountain Wildfire
- May 30th, 2006 - Severe Pulse Thunderstorms
- May 31st, 2006 - Severe Pulse Thunderstorms, take #2
- June 1st, 2006 - Flash Flooding in York County
- June 2nd, 2006 - More Flash Flooding and Severe Weather in York County
- June 9th, 2006 - Severe Thunderstorms - Hail and Wind
- June 22nd, 2006 - Widespread Severe Thunderstorms
- Flooding of Late June 2006 - Widespread Flooding
- July 9th, 2006 - More Severe Pulse Thunderstorms
- July 10th, 2006 - Anti-Cyclonic Mesocyclone over Elk County
- July 18th, 2006 - Hail and Wind Producing Storms
- July 27th, 2006 - Hail and Wind Producing Storms
- August 25-26th, 2006 - Long-Lived Supercells
- September 1-2, 2006 - Rain from the remnants of TS Ernesto
- September 28th, 2006 - Severe Thunderstorms, including F1 Tornado in Cumberland County
- November 16th, 2006 - Severe Thunderstorms
- December 1st, 2006 - Severe Thunderstorms, including F1 Tornado in Dauphin County
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