By News-Register staff • 

Funnel cloud weather today, Weather Service says

It's funnel cloud weather, the National Weather Service is warning today, in a special weather statement -- but there probably won't be another tornado. Probably.

 "The combination of an unseasonably cool upper level low pressure system and the strongest sunshine and surface heating of the year is causing a very unstable air mass near the surface," the weather service states on its website. "As a result ... strong updrafts within heavier showers may result in weak rotation and brief cold core funnel clouds today. These funnel clouds are fairly typical in this weather pattern and rarely touch the ground as tornadoes."


Don Dix

Let's review --
About a week earlier, similar weather formations caused a small tornado to form over a section of Mac. There was no preemptive 'forecast' of any such developments. Not even a hint!

Today, after the fact, we get a warning from the weather service about possible 'funnel cloud weather'.

Supposition would lead one to believe this new forecast was based less on science and more on covering one's embarrassed ass, don't you think?


Trends in weather change are worth noting, Don. Talked to a cousin back in Emmetsburg, Iowa last night, farmers still haven't got their crops in the ground.

Don Dix

Weather has done nothing but repeat it's trends. I'm just noting a different type of trend -- one which is partially meant to 'not be caught off guard again'.

Forecasting weather in the northwest is difficult, no doubt. But this particular forecast seems to have more to do with very recent weather than actual possibility.

Mac's tornado is far from being the first in the area. Obviously, conditions favored formation ( as this forecast), so why didn't the weather service issue the same warning last week? It just doesn't smell right.


Portland Weather Forecast Office---> (503) 261-9246

Don Dix

Portland forecasters are nothing special. They usually just read the same generic daily forecast. And any long-range forecast changes from one day to the next. Yesterday, Friday's forecast was 70/ 55 with showers. Today, Friday's forecast is 82/58 and partly cloudy. Hardly a reliable source.


I spend an inordinate amount of the day with my head in the clouds and have found weather predictions as far out as 4 hours rarely pan-out where I live. Having listened to the interview of the guy whom had lost the roof over his business (he moved here to Oregon from the midwest and knows first hand what the weather before a tornado looks like) I will take his word for it that a tornado touched down in McMinnville.

Had there been an advance announcement made of possible funnel cloud activity occurring on that day, how or what effect might it have had on your daily routine?

Would you have done anything extraordinary to protect your family (pets are family, too) from the windows in your walls?

What would you, yourself have actually done if you'd had that information, Don?

Don Dix

For sure, I would have kept a closer eye on the sky. Weather instincts and experience come somewhat naturally to natives of any area if they pay attention. And since my occupation could be weather influenced daily, personal observation has served just as well as most 'professional forecasts'.

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