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June 12, 2006 Hailstorm

Event Overview –

Widespread large hail was observed over Eastern North Carolina during the late afternoon hours of Monday June 12, 2006. The severe weather lasted from roughly 3:30 pm to 6 pm, with Craven and Pamlico Counties being particularly hard hit. Softball sized hail, up to 4.25 inches in diameter, was observed in the New Bern area causing widespread damage, especially to vehicles. The storm also hit agriculture hard with Pamlico County Extension Service reporting damage to 879 acres. The crops affected included corn, tobacco, cotton and soybeans.  There were additionally reports of minor wind damage across the region. These severe reports were part of a larger area of severe weather that covered a large portion of the Carolinas (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Severe Weather Reports from June 12, 2006

 






Synoptic Overview –

As of 12Z Monday June 12, 2006, the 500 mb analysis (Figure 2) showed a mid-level trough moving east from the Appalachians east-southeastward across the Carolinas. At the surface, an east-west oriented cold front was slowly drifting across Eastern North Carolina at late morning (Figure 3). The 12Z Newport/Morehead City upper-air sounding showed a moist, unstable pre-storm environment (Figure 4). The low levels continued to warm/destabilize south of the boundary with surface dewpoints in the 70s and CAPE (Convective Available Potential Energy) values ranging from 1500 to 2500 J/kg. This instability led to a Severe Thunderstorm Watch being issued at 1:45 pm effective through 8 pm in the evening (Figure 5). In addition to the instability, a band of 35 to 50 knot mid-level flow above the surface frontal zone provided sufficient vertical shear for organized severe storms to develop. In fact, the scattered convection developed into a large mesoscale convective system (MCS) with numerous large hail and wind reports.

 

 

Figure 2. 500 mb Analysis at 12Z June 12, 2006 showing a mid-level trough moving from the Appalachians across the Carolinas.

 

Figure 3. Surface Map at 15Z June 12, 2006 showing slow-moving cold front across Eastern North Carolina.

 

Figure 4. The 12Z Newport/Morehead City upper-air sounding showed a moderately unstable pre-storm environment.

 

 

Figure 5. A Severe Thunderstorm Watch was issued at 1:25 pm June 12, 2006, for most of Eastern North Carolina.

 

Radar Analysis –

 

The initial report of dime-sized hail came from Richlands in Onslow County at 3:33 pm and hail reports continued to come in through 6 pm. Five reports of hail of greater than 2 inches were received with the largest being a very rare 4.25 inch (softball-sized) hail report from James City in Craven County around 4:55 pm. One of the best indicators of large hail is the Vertically Intergrated Liquid (VIL) product from the WSR-88D NEXRAD radar. Vertically Integrated Liquid is an estimate of the total mass of precipitation in the clouds. Higher VIL values are usually well-correlated with large hail. VIL values in excess of 70 kg/m2 were observed near New Bern/James City as the softball sized hail was reported (Figure 6). High reflectivity cores were observed at multiple elevation angles throughout the storm (Figure 7). The storm also exhibited a tilted updraft as shown in this reflectivity cross section (Figure 8). This was due to unidirectional wind shear, which enabled the storm to remain severe, producing large hail, throughout its track.

 

Figure 6. Newport/Morehead City radar depiction of Vertically Integrated Liquid (VIL). Higher values of VIL typically correlate well with large hail. Note the large area of VIL over 70 kg/m2 near New Bern around 2045Z June 12, 2006.

 

Figure 7. A four-panel reflectivity view from the Newport/Morehead City WSR-88D radar showing high reflectivity values at 0.5, 1.5, 2.4 and 3.4 degrees elevation slices.

Figure 8. Radar cross-section showing a tilted updraft and a 70 dbZ core in excess of 35000 ft, indicative of a severe supercell storm.

 

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT...SUMMARY

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NEWPORT/MOREHEAD CITY NC

1012 PM EDT MON JUN 12 2006

 

..TIME...   ...EVENT...      ...CITY LOCATION...     ...LAT.LON...

..DATE...   ....MAG....      ..COUNTY LOCATION..ST.. ...SOURCE....

            ..REMARKS..

 

0333 PM     HAIL             RICHLANDS               34.90N 77.55W

06/12/2006  E0.75 INCH       ONSLOW             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0334 PM     HAIL             RICHLANDS               34.90N 77.55W

06/12/2006  E0.88 INCH       ONSLOW             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0345 PM     HAIL             RICHLANDS               34.90N 77.55W

06/12/2006  E0.75 INCH       ONSLOW             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0413 PM     HAIL             ROSE HILL               34.83N 78.03W

06/12/2006  E0.25 INCH       DUPLIN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0441 PM     HAIL             TRENT WOODS             35.08N 77.10W

06/12/2006  E0.88 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   TRAINED SPOTTER

 

0442 PM     HAIL             JAMES CITY              35.07N 77.02W

06/12/2006  E1.00 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0444 PM     HAIL             TRENT WOODS             35.08N 77.10W

06/12/2006  E0.75 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0445 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.75 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0445 PM     HAIL             3 S NEW BERN            35.08N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.75 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   TRAINED SPOTTER

 

0445 PM     HAIL             TRENT WOODS             35.08N 77.10W

06/12/2006  E0.25 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0446 PM     HAIL             TRENT WOODS             35.08N 77.10W

06/12/2006  E0.88 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0449 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.50 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   NWS EMPLOYEE   

 

0449 PM     HAIL             3 S NEW BERN            35.08N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.00 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0449 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.00 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   TRAINED SPOTTER

 

0450 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E0.88 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0450 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.00 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0450 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.00 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0450 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.00 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0452 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.75 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0453 PM     HAIL             TRENT WOODS             35.08N 77.10W

06/12/2006  E0.88 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0454 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E2.00 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   LAW ENFORCEMENT

 

0455 PM     HAIL             JAMES CITY              35.07N 77.02W

06/12/2006  E4.25 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0455 PM     HAIL             JAMES CITY              35.07N 77.02W

06/12/2006  E2.75 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0455 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.75 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   TRAINED SPOTTER

 

0456 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E1.75 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0457 PM     HAIL             NEW BERN                35.12N 77.08W

06/12/2006  E2.50 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC          

 

0507 PM     HAIL             4 E OLYMPIA             35.14N 76.90W

06/12/2006  E2.75 INCH       PAMLICO            NC   PUBLIC         

 

0508 PM     HAIL             2 E OLYMPIA             35.14N 76.93W

06/12/2006  E1.75 INCH       PAMLICO            NC   PUBLIC         

 

0510 PM     TSTM WND DMG     2 E OLYMPIA             35.14N 76.93W

06/12/2006                   PAMLICO            NC   LAW ENFORCEMENT

 

            POWER LINES DOWN NEAR REELSBORO.

 

0510 PM     HAIL             BRIDGETON               35.12N 77.02W

06/12/2006  E1.75 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0512 PM     HAIL             E BRIDGETON             35.12N 77.02W

06/12/2006  E1.00 INCH       CRAVEN             NC   PUBLIC         

 

0531 PM     HAIL             AURORA                  35.30N 76.79W

06/12/2006  E2.75 INCH       BEAUFORT           NC   PUBLIC         

 

0600 PM     HAIL             1 NW SWANQUARTER        35.41N 76.33W

06/12/2006  E0.50 INCH       HYDE               NC   PUBLIC          

 

0600 PM     TSTM WND GST     1 NW SWANQUARTER        35.41N 76.33W

06/12/2006  E60.00 MPH       HYDE               NC   PUBLIC         

 

            TREE LIMBS DOWN ON THE ROADWAY BETWEEN ROSE BAY AND

            SWANQUARTER.

 

 

&&

Sources –

Storm Prediction Center

New Bern Sun Journal Newspaper

GR2 Analyst Software

 





Damage Pictures from Craven County
Photos courtesy of: Stanley Kite, Craven County EM, and Jamie Arnold, WITN TV.









Case Study Team:
Chris Collins

Hal Austin