Sunday, November 6, 2011

5.6 Magnitude Oklahoma Earthquake Felt in North Illinois

The earthquakes that recently occurred in Oklahoma were felt all the way north near Chicago! While the maximum shaking appears to have been felt right around the epicenter near Oklahoma city, there was weak to light shaking in Missouri, Illinois felt. With all the earthquake news, you might be wondering how many there were.
A total of 21 earthquakes were recorded in the last day from this general epicenter just to the east of Oklahoma City. Aftershocks will likely continue for a few days but taper off and eventually stop (unless another big earthquake hits) within a week.

2/3 of Texas under Exceptional Drought Classification; Rain may come Tonight

Just under two thirds of Texas is under the exceptional category of drought conditions as of November 1st. It is important to note that not one area of Texas is not in a drought category.
The good news is that the 12z RUC from today is forecasting rain to occur in the Texas region, affecting some portions of the exceptionally dry areas.
This afternoon

This evening
This will not end the drought, but may be a good, very small first step out of this exceptional drought category.

Cloud Pattern over Illinois Indicates Windy Conditions to come

The cloud pattern over Illinois and Wisconsin is indicating that a windy period for the area will be present soon or now. Observations are indicating that windy conditions are occurring in Illinois, Wisconsin. Lake Michigan is encountering winds over 48 knots near the center of Lake Michigan, making for a dangerous day to go boating. On land, wind speeds range from 5 knots to 20 knots around this cloud pattern.
Current Wind Observations (Not real-time updating)
Another indicator that windy conditions are occurring are the tight isobars over the region. When isobars (black lines on the image below) are close together, it indicates windy conditions. When they are disorganized, it means winds are light or calm. A strong low pressure system, like the one that just moved into Canada from the Dakotas, can create tight isobars. Below is current surface analysis at the time of publishing.