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Wednesday May 31st 2006


The end of May brought the third and final day in a mini-heat wave across much of the mid-Atlantic. Afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms dotted the radar screen. In some locations, high temperatures for the third consecutive day topped 90 degrees (table 1). Along with the very warm temperatures, low level moisture was high with surface dewpoints well into the 60s. An upper level high pressure parked over the eastern United States was the culprit for above normal temperatures during the latter part of May.

Table 1

Location

5/29

5/30

5/31

Charleston

91

93

92

Huntington

91

92

92

Parkersburg

89

91

90

Clarksburg

89

92

91

In response to daytime heating, isolated showers and thunderstorms developed by late morning in the southern mountains of West Virginia then outflows from those thunderstorms spawned additional storms in the coal fields. Nine severe thunderstorm warnings were issued by the Weather Service Office in Charleston primarily for hail. The largest hail reported was 1.75 inches in the town of Julian in Boone County. 

The radar image below was taken at 1830Z illustrating the scattered nature of storms.

Figure 1 1830Z 0.5 degree reflectivity. 

The next image shows a cross section of a severe thunderstorm that produced 1.5 inch hail in Logan County. The red indicates where hail is located in the storm.  The hail descended minutes after this image was taken.

Figure 2 Reflectivity cross section of a severe thunderstorm in Logan County at 1830Z.

The following satellite image shows how isolated the storms were. Any location that was affected by a storm Wednesday afternoon received a healthy does of rain in addition to frequent lightning. With temperatures in the lower 90s and surface dewpoints in the 60s, the atmosphere was primed for thunderstorm development.  The activity over eastern Ohio was in response to a weak boundary.

Figure 3 Visible satellite image at 1915Z

Below is a list of all the storm reports relayed to the National Weather Service in Charleston, WV

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CHARLESTON WV

 

1230 PM     HAIL             ANAWALT                 37.33N 81.44W

05/31/2006  E0.75 INCH       MCDOWELL           WV   POST OFFICE 

 

0205 PM     HAIL             MILL CREEK              38.73N 79.97W

05/31/2006  M1.00 INCH       RANDOLPH           WV   EMERGENCY MNGR 

 

0245 PM     HAIL             SWITZER                 37.79N 81.97W

05/31/2006  M1.50 INCH       LOGAN              WV   POST OFFICE    

 

0245 PM     HAIL             JULIAN                  38.15N 81.85W

05/31/2006  M1.75 INCH       BOONE              WV   POST OFFICE    

 

0305 PM     HAIL             4 W HARMAN              38.92N 79.60W

05/31/2006  E0.88 INCH       RANDOLPH           WV   TRAINED SPOTTER

 

0416 PM     HAIL             SAINT ALBANS            38.38N 81.83W

05/31/2006  U0.25 INCH.      KANAWHA            WV   PUBLIC

            EVENT OCCURRED BETWEEN

            401 PM 05/31/2006 AND 416 PM 05/31/2006

 

 




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Page last modified: April 18, 2013

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