Destructive thunderstorm rips Atlanta

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 02:40 PM GMT am 15. März 2008

A violent thunderstorm roared through downtown Atlanta at 9:40 pm Friday night, bringing tornado-force winds that injured 27 people and caused millions in damage. It is uncertain whether the wind damage was due to a tornado or a strong thunderstorm microburst. If it was a tornado, it was the only one for the day, since the Storm Prediction Center did not receive any other reports for tornadoes Friday. However, 96 reports of hail and 23 reports of damaging wind were received. Examination of the radar reflectivity loop shows the classic hook echo commonly accompanying tornadoes was present in the storm before and after it hit Atlanta, but not while it was over the city. The Doppler velocity loop shows that there was rotation associated with the thunderstorm that hit the city, and this rotation increased as the thunderstorm moved over the city. It is certainly possible that this thunderstorm spawned a tornado.

Figure 1. Radar reflectivity image of the March, 14, 2008 Atlanta, Georgia thunderstorm. No "hook" echo is evident in the image as the storm swept through Atlanta.

Figure 2. Doppler winds image of the March 14, 2008, Atlanta, Georgia thunderstorm. Note the region just northwest of the city showing blues and reds right next to each other, denoting strong winds moving both towards and away from the radar in a tight circulation. This is the signature associated with a mesocyclone--a rotating thunderstorm that commonly spawns tornadoes.

Severe weather is not done with the region yet--the Storm Prediction Center has placed northern Georgia and much of South Carolina under their "Moderate Risk" category for severe weather today, one level below the their highest level of risk. The Weather Underground Severe Weather page and Tornado page are good places to go to follow today's severe weather.

Jeff Masters

Wind damage over Cabbagetown (FrenchKheldar)
Possible tornado over Cabbagetown, a neighborhood east of Downtown Atlanta. Pictures taken around the block delimited by Mollie Street, Estoria and Gaskill.
Wind damage over Cabbagetown
Atlanta Tornado F2 (boyntonbeachboy)
The first recorded tornado hit downtown Atlanta last night causing major damage
Atlanta Tornado F2
Funnel Clouds today over Atlanta. looking North (boyntonbeachboy)
looking north up GA 400 i dont think this one touched the ground
Funnel Clouds today over Atlanta.   looking North

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208. Inyo
05:10 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
I called my friend during the tornado, without knowing about it, and he was hiding in his bathroom from the Atlanta tornado. Thankfully it missed his house!
Member Since: September 3, 2002 Posts: 42 Comments: 930
03:15 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Ice like everything else displaces its equlivant mass when FLOATING in water. The ice in pipes isnt floating.

If it wasn't water in the ocean (already in the hydrologic cycle) it would matter. That is why artificial trapping (very significant) and more snowfall (probably not so important except over time on a cold continent) makes such a difference outside the ocean.

Anywho, On the topic of supercooled water. I wonder if it is more dense than salt water?

the answer is NO - Chart

Fresh water has a density of 1.0 while salt water has a density of 1.025.

So what is the density of cold salt water?

I guess it changes to, with temp, I wonder what difference pressure makes.
Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743
206. Skyepony
02:38 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
The southeast had it bad again on Saturday as well. The survey teams had another busy day. Peachtree, GA had 87 reports

1225 PM TORNADO 5 NW ARAGON 34.10N 85.12W


0615 PM TORNADO 1 NW WRENS 33.22N 82.40W


Several tornados, lotta hail, largest 2 & 3/4".

Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 365 Comments: 42550
205. lindenii
02:03 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Hey JER I get the subtle message.

Sorry about being so long winded with this silly ice discussion.

I realize nothing more can come of this discussion. So, I will stop now.

Thanks for the hint.
204. lindenii
01:59 AM GMT am 17. März 2008

Dude, you done stepped on it.

Ice expands, which is why approximately 1/7 of an ice cube or iceberg is floating above the water.

Ever heard of draining your outside water pipes before a freeze to prevent bursting of the pipes when they froze?

Ever put a bottle of water in the freezer and forgotten it. I don't know about yours, but mine split wide open, and not just by a little.

Years ago there was an appliance store in Huntington IN that lost power in a particularily cold winter and the pipes froze inside the building. When the power was restored and the heat came back on...guess what happened? The pipe thawed and the bottom floor was flooded with over six inches of water, destroying all of the appliances,

Why on earth do we use ANTI-FREEZE in our automobiles.



Lets go over it one more time. Water expands when it turns into ice. A cubic foot of water will expand a predetermined amount and then when it returns to its liquid state the volume will revert of that same cubic foot volume.

You are attempting to say that the cubic foot of water will expand when frozen and then when it thaws will not return to the same cubic foot but something else altogether different.

Talk about GWT.
203. sebastianjer
01:58 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Doing well thanks

Well maybe it'll miss you, sorry gotta run. Have a good evening my friend

Member Since: August 26, 2005 Posts: 1030 Comments: 11197
202. moonlightcowboy
01:55 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Hey, JER, good and you? Dreading this next run of severe weather!
Member Since: Juli 9, 2006 Posts: 184 Comments: 29617
201. sebastianjer
01:51 AM GMT am 17. März 2008

How you doing tonight?

Member Since: August 26, 2005 Posts: 1030 Comments: 11197
200. sebastianjer
01:48 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
RE #197

Now I like that one! I just posted a paper that relies exclusively on empirical evidence, not theory or models. It shows that the greatest part of sea level rise was in the first half of the 20th century and that the past twenty years showed no significant sea level rise.

BTW the math to prove warming has not been empirically proved. As matter of fact it has come under serious attack by several physicist. Besides the math for the green house effect is not in question as a general rule, based on that math a doubling of CO2 will only increase global temps by 1 degC, that's the IPCC figure. It is the feedback math, if you can call it that, that is in debate. But I am glad you agee that only empirical evidence really counts.


Member Since: August 26, 2005 Posts: 1030 Comments: 11197
199. moonlightcowboy
01:45 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
LOL, JF, take a chill pill - you're gonna blow a gasket. it comes, again - more severe weather!




SUNDAY's view
Member Since: Juli 9, 2006 Posts: 184 Comments: 29617
198. lindenii
01:43 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Interesting definition in the M-W Online

Empirical-relying on experience or observation alone often without due regard for system and theory.

This particular discussion is not really about GW, it is about the bogus claim that the fresh water ice flows raise the water differently because they are in a saline solution. Those pictures furnished on the website are a joke.

I am not asking to prove or disprove GW, I am asking for the math or for its location which supports the idea reported in the website. Naturally, I am suspicious when such an important element is omitted in such an obvious departure from accepted science.

Without the supporting math, the claim regarding ice in a saline solution is worthless .
01:32 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
EXACTLY Empirical evidence does!

A central concept in science and the scientific method is that all evidence must be empirical, or empirically based, that is, dependent on evidence or consequences that are observable by the senses.

Warming was noted before GW "theory."

The math necessary to explain warming perfectly is the same math used in meteorology, physics, calculus and chemistry.

Do you not believe in that?

Also Ice freezing displaces about the same amount of water it just has lower density. Just a difference because of purity. In pure water it would be the same, unless it supercooled.

Archimedes Principle states that an object immersed in a fluid is buoyed up by a force equal to the weight of the fluid it displaces. However, Noerdlinger notes that because freshwater is not as dense as saltwater, freshwater actually has greater volume than an equivalent weight of saltwater. Thus, when freshwater ice melts in the ocean, it contributes a greater volume of melt water than it originally displaced.
Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743
196. lindenii
01:30 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
194. JFLORIDA 8:24 PM EST on March 16, 2008
Since when does complexity disprove something? Its a complicated situation. I put the reasoning for the numbers out.

Since when does complexity prove something either.

The claim seems bogus without the math to support it. At this point it simply looks like a GWT twisting things to support a position that is incorrect.

I did ask you to point us to where the math is located so that we could check it for ourselves didn't I.
195. lindenii
01:25 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Hey gang,

My reply # 193 is in reference to a post by JFLORIDA #179 and is in regard to the last link provided in that post.

Sorry for the not refering to it in the actual post I wrote.
01:24 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Since when does complexity disprove something? Its a complicated situation. I put the reasoning for the numbers out. Warming is confirmed. What else is there? You want the exact number of sea level rise?

Look at a water gauge.
Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743
193. lindenii
01:19 AM GMT am 17. März 2008

This is one time you have to show us the math...those pictures don't show squat.

If it is as they say, then it should be relatively simple to calculate the density of the saline water solution and determine how high the ice should float and then predict what the resultant increase in volume actually is.

Which means you gotta show us the math, or at least point us to a place where we can do the math ourselves.

Here is your biggest problem with the ice thing. Yes, ice may float differently in differnt densities of saline water solution. What you have forgotten is that when water forms into ice it expands and the expansion is not even being mentioned in the link you provided.

It would seem to me that since a given volume of water while liquid at say 32f, when frozen expands according to a long ago determined amount, when that ice returns to its liquid form it reverts to its original volume as well. This is something that science long ago determined to be true. That means that there can be no change in level regardless of density of the liquid salinity in which it was situated.

Which points back to my original statement. This is one of those times where showing the math is the only way to settle this. Cause it isn't simply a case of 'They said it was so, I believe them and thats all there is to it.'
01:17 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Ice flows are in the Ocean and cover about 44 percent of Antarctica's coastline.

Things have also changed. A new report is due out soon.
Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743
191. sebastianjer
01:13 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
I reckon if you are right the IPCC is wrong
“Current global model studies project that the Antarctic ice sheet will remain too cold for widespread surface melting and is expected to gain in mass due to increased snowfall.”

If the omnipotent IPCC is wrong about this what else might they be wrong about? Anyway I'm not going to exchange papers with you. The fact is that the Antarctic Continent as a whole is not getting warmer. Portions of the Peninsula are, but the ice sheets are not going to melt, we are not going to drown and life will go on. If you wish to believe otherwise enjoy yourself.

I will leave you with this though

Nine long and nearly continuous sea level records were chosen from around the world to explore rates of change in sea level for 1904–2003. These records were found to capture the variability found in a larger number of stations over the last half century studied previously. Extending the sea level record back over the entire century suggests that the high variability in the rates of sea level change observed over the past 20 years were not particularly unusual. The rate of sea level change was found to be larger in the early part of last century (2.03 ± 0.35 mm/yr 1904–1953), in comparison with the latter part (1.45 ± 0.34 mm/yr 1954–2003). The highest decadal rate of rise occurred in the decade centred on 1980 (5.31 mm/yr) with the lowest rate of rise occurring in the decade centred on 1964 (−1.49 mm/yr). Over the entire century the mean rate of change was 1.74 ± 0.16 mm/yr.

Received 17 October 2006; accepted 21 November
2006; published 4 January 2007.

On the decadal rates of sea level change during the twentieth century

Have a good one
Member Since: August 26, 2005 Posts: 1030 Comments: 11197
01:12 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
I like when people talk about more than one thing. Night surfmom. I saw that mr Sea its cool, but i don't know if tornadoes really do that. I guess they could. Mesocyclone probably for sure though.
Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743
189. surfmom
01:11 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Member Since: Juli 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
188. MrSea
01:05 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
check out my blog its got the eye of the tornado
187. surfmom
12:58 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
patrap - your post173 -that link is beautiful, better then tv
Member Since: Juli 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
186. nash28
12:49 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Look dude....

There's really no need to get all tizzied up over it. But when I click on a blog title for severe wx and I have to scroll down forever to find anything resembling that due to the same numbers and theories that have posted ad nauseum for years now, it gets a little tedious.

But it's cool. I'll find something else to do. Have fun.
Member Since: Juli 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
12:45 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Crap is not remembering that ice sheets float and displace water.

Crap is saying "people talk about nothing but GW" when the MSM has basically dropped this important weather and climate topic to cover the He said/She said of the primaries.

All this pretty new Nash - as in published today or very recently. I think good questions were brought up by the skeptics. You don't throw a tizzy when they post. As a matter a fact, wasn't GW the subject of YOUR blog a few days ago???
Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743
184. nash28
12:44 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Well excuse me JFlorida. Not that you've spoken for the masses.....

Member Since: Juli 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
183. ouzel
12:40 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Isn't there anything else to do?

Read a book?
181. nash28
12:32 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
I mean really...

Do people really WANT this crap day in and day out??? Isn't there anything else to do?
Member Since: Juli 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
180. nash28
12:31 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
I see the GW talks have resurfaced again on here....

What a beating. Between this and this ridiculous "in your face 24/7 media blowfest of Obama/Clinton", I cannot watch tv unless it's the flippin Discovery Channel, nor can I listed to radio.

Member Since: Juli 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
12:09 AM GMT am 17. März 2008
Remember first too. Floating Ice shelves displace water, their melting would only change sea level a minuscule amount. Simply because they are fresh water.

If the ice melts in your drink, your glass doesn't overflow.

As a matter of fact, with accelerated damning (see my earlier posts) and increased snowfall in the Antarctic and Arctic, there would be little or no change initially if you think about it.

There may even be a slight initial lowering.

It would give a false sense of security until it was too late.

Its incredible the skeptics are not covering this.

The researchers, from the National Central University in Taiwan, calculate that sea levels would be 30 mm (1.2 inches) higher without water stored behind dams.


In a paper titled "The Melting of Floating Ice will Raise the Ocean Level" submitted to Geophysical Journal International, Noerdlinger demonstrates that melt water from sea ice and floating ice shelves could add 2.6% more water to the ocean than the water displaced by the ice, or the equivalent of approximately 4 centimeters (1.57 inches) of sea-level rise.
Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743
11:53 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
More sea ice occurs in Antarctica as it warms, from winds, currents, and caving of glaciers and Ice sheets. Glaciers move faster and when it warms up,and in polar areas it snows more as people can attest to that live in that climate.

Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743
176. BahaHurican
11:35 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
Wow! this is the quietest sat map of the Caribbean I've seen in simply AGES! Nary a cloud in sight, from above or below . . .

Evening all, btw.
Member Since: Oktober 25, 2005 Posts: 20 Comments: 24934
175. lindenii
11:12 PM GMT am 16. März 2008

Actually, those figures were for pure additives.

Since the density of water decreases when salt is added, those figures would naturally change. It should be relatively easy to make the conversion and then do the math.

The point was that the sea level changes which should occur with temperature change can/should be determined. With a sophisticated enough sytem of analysis, we should be able to accertain how much sea level shold change with a certain temperature change.

Once that happens, we would then be able to back track and say with some degree of certaintity that the sea level rose a specified amount and the temperature should have changed commensurately...check, check, and yup Houston we have a go...or, no cigar today gang.

Either way, if sea level rises and amounts do not coincide with temperature changes, then the global warming folks will be obliged to go back to the blackboard.
174. stormdude77
11:06 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
Good evening!

For those of you interested in the current SSTs (In the Atlantic), see my blog, if you want.
173. Patrap
11:03 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
GOM and Atlantic Fla. 120 Hour Surface Current Forecast Model,loop Eddy and Gulf Stream flow. Link
Member Since: Juli 3, 2005 Posts: 439 Comments: 137203
172. MichaelSTL
11:01 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
This looks a little wet:

(not sure why the HPC has the heaviest rain further south; models show it falling about where the flood watches currently are)
Member Since: Februar 22, 2006 Posts: 94 Comments: 32744
171. Patrap
10:44 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
Found lots of reference material on that subject Skyepony.Very good reading.

Co-seismic Excitation of Earth Rotational
and Gravitational Changes

More here,,Googleville Link

Member Since: Juli 3, 2005 Posts: 439 Comments: 137203
170. sebastianjer
10:42 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
I am constantly hearing how Antarctic is melting, my house here in Sebastian Florida will be deluged by the the rising seas, lol. But facts are stubborn things, even when not reported on the nightly news.

Antarctica-Some Facts

Source- Cryosphere Today

I know it is hard to read, but that line that about goes off the chart at the beginning of 2008, represents the most sea ice ever recorded in the Southern Hemisphere-IN RECORDED HISTORY !. I know the recorded history here only goes back to 1979, but if they use that line on the Arctic, I can on the Antarctic, fair is fair.

Now to temperatures

Figure 1. Annual Antarctic near-surface temperature (K) anomalies (with respect to the 1980–1999 mean) for various data sets for (a) 1950–2005 and (b) 1980–2005. The new temperature datasets developed in the 2008 article are labeled “RECON” (from Monaghan et al., 2008).Source

Now I don't know about anyone else, but I do not see any particularly frightening trends here. You want to know something else-neither does the omnipotent IPCC.

“Antarctic sea ice extent continues to show inter-annual variability and localized changes but no statistically significant average trends, consistent with the lack of warming reflected in atmospheric temperatures averaged across the region.” Furthermore, IPCC just as clearly states “Current global model studies project that the Antarctic ice sheet will remain too cold for widespread surface melting and is expected to gain in mass due to increased snowfall.”


To be fair they expect the increased mass to be due to increased snowfall from increased moisture from GLOBAL WARMING. Either way they do not expect it to melt but rather to grow.

So for now I feel safe that my house is not going to flood from Antarctic melting. I will spare you the most recent scientific studies on sea levels, or what the IPCC says about them. If others wish to panic, well have fun.

Member Since: August 26, 2005 Posts: 1030 Comments: 11197
10:35 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
The Ocean - deep subject.
Apropos of nothing...I hadn't been to Atlanta for years - was there the day before the storm hit.
Member Since: Oktober 13, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 2156
168. Michfan
10:24 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
Glad to see everyone kinda talk each through the arguments and go over the data. Its very refreshing to see.
Member Since: September 7, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1944
167. surfmom
09:56 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
Wow, you guys are really brainstorming today - gave me lots to think about --weather is weird --there's so much science, but there is so much random chaos ---hurts my brain, but I really enjoyed the points and questions your all have raised ---ahhh yes I have to think...LOL not something many humans do for themselves these days LOL
Member Since: Juli 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
09:52 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
165. lindenii 5:42 PM

Fresh water?

"The density of seawater at the surface of the ocean varies from 1,020 to 1,029 kilograms per cubic meter."

Seawater Density Calculator
Member Since: Oktober 13, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 2156
165. lindenii
09:42 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
For those of you who would like to do the math here is some help

At 20 c 1 gram of water has a volume of 1.0028 ml
At 22 c 1 gram of water has a volume of 1.0033 ml

Determine the volume of a column of water so many feet in length and do the math.

I know, it is not in Farenheit; but you can do the conversion yourself can't you?
164. lindenii
09:19 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
158. JFLORIDA 11:14 AM EST on March 16, 2008
No, you cant really just say that. I mean a perfect projection is a situationally perfect projection. Not ever reality.


Thank you. I couldn't have said it better.

Global warming is just like global cooling or anything in between, it is a projection nothing more nothing less.

By asking questions that concern being able to verify the projections we are attempting to make the projection more than just a projection.

By asking how much sea level will rise if the ocean temps increase an average of 2 degrees f, we begin the process of looking for a solid quantifyable method of determining the veracity of the prediction that global warming is occurring.

Saying that a particular weather pattern is your proof is no where near solid evidence. Its like saying the pavement is wet, therfore it rained. Maybe, but what if I had just sent a water truck down that street and it sprayed water on it instead? Using your method of observation, you would steadfastly refuse to hear anything other than rain.

BTW...Using the oceans and their temperatures is not a task to take lightly. One thing that must be taken into consideration is convection. Cool water obliges us by sinking to the bottom. Warm water is more stubborn in that it stays at the top.

How on earth could you possibly measure the average temperature of the oceans with an average depth of say 10,000 feet? Remember, while the average might be 10,000, in actuality, the depth varies greatly and thus so do the temps. I read somewhere that the temperature of the water at the deepest parts of the Atlantic is in the mid to upper 30's.

The interesting thing is that if you do the math on a body of water 10,000 feet deep with a uniform temperature, and then raise the temperature of that column 2 degrees f, the height of that column will increase by about 2 to 3 feet.

Global warming and global cooling are nothing more than predictions and will likely remain so for some time to come.
163. Skyepony
07:55 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
Nice pic beachboy..

Patrap~ wish we'd seen that when it came out. I remember following the data related to that. Many were saying it was all a farce. The data really supported a shift though. Sometime in 2006 the wobble seemed to correct itself as it moved back in line with where the earth's axis was forecast to be.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 365 Comments: 42550
07:37 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
Member Since: Oktober 13, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 2156
161. Patrap
04:31 PM GMT am 16. März 2008
Earthquakes and their Tsunami's Play a Role , and suddenly..Globally.Link

Tsunami-Causing Earthquake Changed Rotation of Earth
Using data from the Dec. 26, 2004 earthquake and tsunami that ravaged lands along the Indian Ocean, NASA scientists have discovered the disaster changed Earths rotation. The quake decreased the length of day, slightly changed the planet's shape, and shifted the North Pole by centimeters.

Photos of the Tsunami landfall during the event, and before.Link
Member Since: Juli 3, 2005 Posts: 439 Comments: 137203
04:26 PM GMT am 16. März 2008

wow , yes. weight and basin and continent elevation too.

After what pat posted above this is Interesting too:


In a new study, NASA and United States Geological Survey
(USGS) scientists found that retreating glaciers in southern
Alaska may be opening the way for future earthquakes.

Also, even though we may not feel it a warming induced earthquake could cause a sudden collapse of an ice field into a nearby ocean or just an earthquake causing an underwater landslide can initiate an unfortunate chain of events:

Melting Ice Sheets Can Cause Earthquakes, Study Fins

A series of large earthquakes shook Scandinavia around 10,000 years ago, along faults that are now quiet, the scientists point out.

The timing of each earthquake roughly coincided with the melting of thick ice sheets from the last ice age in those same places.

Member Since: Mai 22, 2006 Posts: 188 Comments: 24743

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