Tulsa - Another Tornado Warning Miss

Tulsa World
From the Tulsa World:

A surprise tornado caused chaos across the Tulsa area Wednesday night in a storm that earlier in the day had only a “limited tornado threat.” The National Weather Service issued the first tornado warning at 7:19 p.m. — with no previous tornado watch in effect — and within minutes of the warning said a tornado was on the ground three miles southwest of Catoosa moving at 50 mph.

Damage on 18th floor of a high-rise building
Tulsa World

Based on the news photography I have seen, this tornado will be rated at least EF-2 -- another significant tornado without advance warning

Here is a map of the approximate path of the tornado's rotation. 

The Doppler wind radar data showed that a tornado warning should have been issued at 7:11pm for what meteorologists call a "QLCS tornado."
Reds are winds away from the radar. 
Greens are winds toward the radar.
By 7:15pm, there was unquestionably a tornado on the ground as evidenced by the Doppler radar's "correlation coefficient" lowering -- which is the radar detecting lofted debris.
Therefore, it is difficult to understand why a tornado warning was not issued until 7:20 -- nine minutes after the radar indicated sufficient rotation for a warning. 
I also don't understand why the warning merely says "capable" of producing a tornado when the radar clearly indicated a tornado was doing damage in a densely populated area. 

As the World's article indicates, there was no tornado watch. 

The "significant tornado parameter" one hour before the tornado formed was sufficient for a tornado as indicated by the value of 1. The forecast, made at 1pm, predicted a value of 1.3. 
A significant tornado parameter value of 1 for Tulsa as of 6pm
It is difficult to understand why a tornado warning wasn't issued earlier. Fortunately, there were no deaths or, to my knowledge, serious injuries. We may not be so lucky next time. 

This is another of an increasingly long series of tornadoes without advance warnings in 2021. I do not understand why the NWS is not addressing this problem. Accordingly, the U.S. needs a National Disaster Review Board


Popular posts from this blog

[1:10am Update] Tornado Forecast for Rest of the Night

First Tornado Watch of the Day Issued

Hilary's Forecast Path Shifts West; Updated 9:20am PDT