Severe thunderstorms developed across southeast North Carolina and northeast South Carolina, producing hail up to 4.5 inches in diameter and damaging winds from mid afternoon into the evening. A total of 23 severe thunderstorm and 3 tornado warnings were issued for 11 counties in NWS Wilmington's county warning area.
The thunderstorms developed during the afternoon along an outflow boundary that had migrated into the area from storms that moved across north central and northeast North Carolina earlier in the day. The development of severe storms was aided by an upper level low system that moved directly over the area. The main severe weather threat was large hail as cold air aloft was associated with the upper level low. The first report of large hail was received around 3:50 PM as 0.75 inch diameter hail fell in Oak Grove in Dillon county. As other storms developed, several other reports of large hail were received with the largest report of 4.5 inches occurring in Florence around 9:10 PM.
Occasional wind damage was reported from some of the storms. The most widespread damage occurred in and around Florence around the time of the large hail during the evening. Numerous trees were knocked down, with some falling on houses. Several building were damages and at least one roof was blown off.
The images below show the base reflectivity, base velocity and vertical integrated liquid (VIL) products from the Wilmington NWS radar around the time of the damage near Florence. The VIL product gives a look at the total amount of water in a thunderstorm and large values indicate the possibility of large hail.
|Reflectivity image from 9:06 PM
The storm that produced the 4.5 inch diameter hail and wind damage was just northwest of Florence.
|Velocity image from 9:06 PM
Radar estimates of winds were around 50 mph.
|VIL image from 9:06 PM 5/25/00|
PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WILMINGTON NC
TIME(EDT) .....CITY LOCATION.....STATE ...EVENT/REMARKS... ....COUNTY LOCATION....
0904 PM 10W FLORENCE SC 1.25 INCH HAIL 05/25/00 FLORENCE REPORTED BY SPOTTER
0905 PM FLORENCE SC 1.75 INCH HAIL 05/25/00 FLORENCE SKYWARN SPOTTER REPORTED AT INTERSECTION OF U.S. 76 AND I-95
0909 PM FLORENCE SC WIND DAMAGE 05/25/00 FLORENCE SKYWARN SPOTTER REPORTED DAMAGE AT CORNER OF IRBY AND CHEROKEE UNCONFIRMED DAMAGE TO TO BUILDINGS AROUND AREA. HAIL UP TO SOFTBALL-SIZE.
0909 PM FLORENCE SC 1.75 INCH HAIL 05/25/00 FLORENCE REPORTED BY SKYWARN SPOTTER
0910 PM FLORENCE SC 4.50 INCH HAIL 5/25/00 FLORENCE REPORTED BY COUNTY EMERGENCY PREPARDNESS COORDINATOR
0912 PM 2S FLORENCE SC WIND DAMAGE 05/25/00 FLORENCE TRAINED SPOTTER REPORTED NUMEROUS TREES DOWN SOME ON HOUSES
0915 PM 3S FLORENCE ARPT SC 1.75 INCH HAIL 05/25/00 FLORENCE REPORTED BY SKYWARN SPOTTER
0929 PM EVERGREEN SC 2.75 INCH HAIL 5/25/00 FLORENCE REPORTED BY HAM RADIO OPERATOR
0929 PM FLORENCE SC 1.25 INCH HAIL 05/25/00 FLORENCE PING BALL-SIZED HAIL REPORTED BY SPOTTER NEAR I-95