Tag: Galveston

During Hurricane Harvey, I think we did a good job making pretty clear that our focus was to be on flooding. And ultimately, the majority of the damage and devastation wrought by Harvey as it moved through our region came via water. But one of the most surprising and occasionally unsettling aspects about Harvey’s impacts on Southeast Texas were the tornadoes. The warnings came fast, they came furious, and a number of them were confirmed.

The fine folks over at U.S. Tornadoes put together a really nice summary of this event, which likely ranks Harvey close to or in the top ten for most prolific tornado-producing tropical systems in the United States.

The Houston National Weather Service forecast office issued over 150 warnings for tornadoes through the storm. During that hellacious Saturday night and Sunday morning, over 30 tornado warnings were issued, most of them overlapping with flash flood warnings. We strongly encouraged people to keep their phone alerts on that night because the frequency of tornadoes was almost shocking (and because of numerous videos of an actual tornado in northwest Harris County late that Saturday afternoon that sort of drove home the point). That, coupled with the flooding likely lead to a long, sleepless night for many in the area. I’ll have some comments about the phone alerting issue at the end of the post.

The early tornadoes

First, let’s recap some of the tornadoes that actually occurred. The NWS Houston office has confirmed nearly 30 tornadoes as of September 14th, all of them either EF-0 or EF-1 strength. Here’s a look at some of the tornadoes.

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This past winter was definitely a warm one that set records in many spots across the country, but some of the most amazing warmth has come close to home—in Galveston.

For Texas and Louisiana, Winter 2016-17 was the warmest on record (back 122 years), but it was also near the top of the list in most of the eastern and central US. (NOAA)


For Texas and Louisiana as a whole, this winter ranked as the warmest on record (back to 1895). In fact, for most of the eastern half of the country, this was a top 5-10 warmest winter as well. For Houston, it edged out 1949-50 to be the warmest on record. For Galveston however, this winter was not the warmest on record. By 0.3°, that distinction still belongs to Winter 1889-90 (worth noting there are no weather records for that winter in Houston). But although the winter as a whole wasn’t a record, Galveston has been doing something arguably even more impressive.

(Space City Weather is sponsored this month by The Mole, a Jonathon Price novel.) Read More…