E-Journal of Severe Storms Meteorology

E-Journal of Severe Storms Meteorology, Vol 3, No 3 (2008)

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In Situ Observations of the 21 April 2007 Tulia, Texas Tornado

Scott F. Blair, Derek R. Deroche, Albert E. Pietrycha


A localized tornado outbreak occurred across the Texas Panhandle during the afternoon and evening hours of 21 April 2007. One supercell thunderstorm produced an EF2 tornado in the town of Tulia, TX. A mobile mesonet vehicle was struck by the tornado while fortuitously collecting in situ data near the center of the vortex. The instrumentation sufficiently resolved the wind and pressure characteristics, at approximately 2.9 m and 2.6 m respectively above ground level, of the tornado’s micro-a scale environment. A maximum wind of 50.4 m s -1 and a pressure deficit of 194 hPa were measured, yielding the largest known pressure fall within a tornado. Analysis of the recorded data and instrumentation were conducted; results are presented and discussed.

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