Scattered severe thunderstorms with damaging winds Monday in the Finger Lakes

finger lakes severe thunderstorms monday juy 18 2016 damaging winds
Scattered thunderstorms will develop during the midday and early afternoon hours with a threat for damaging winds.

Scattered thunderstorms will develop during the midday and early afternoon hours with a threat for damaging winds.

The entire region is in the ‘low’ category for severe weather today on the FLX Severe Weather Scale. This is the second lowest classification, and means that scattered severe storms are possible.

Thunderstorms are ongoing this morning as of 7am over parts of the western Finger Lakes. These storms are not the main event, and should gradually dissipate this morning, though that is not completely certain. These early morning storms could complicate the forecast for later this morning if they keep temperatures cooler. Warm ad humid air behind the storms should still be able to overspread the region, however, setting the stage for more thunderstorms.

The best chance for thunderstorms across the Finger Lakes region, outside of the early morning storms, will be between 11am-3pm. A few isolated showers or storms may linger longer into the late afternoon, but most of the action will be earlier in the day.

Damaging winds are the primary concern for severe weather today, along with frequent lightning. The hail threat is a bit uncertain, but will probably be somewhat limited. While a tornado cannot 100% be ruled out, the profile of the wind in the lower levels of the atmosphere is not overly supportive of tornado development. The lack of a substantial hail and tornado threat are one of two reasons the threat level was capped at ‘LOW’ and not upgraded to ‘Elevated’.

The second reason will be the overall scattered coverage of storms. With only isolated to scattered thunderstorms, a majority of the region will probably not see a severe thunderstorm today. Further east, individual storm cells many combine into small line segments, thus impacting a greater percentage of the area. These areas are closer to an elevated severe risk today, but just barely remain classified as low due to the single focused wind threat.

Any thunderstorms that linger into the late afternoon will have a lower overall chance of being severe and will quickly dissipate as the sun sets. A quiet, clear and more comfortable night is likely. The next chance for rain in the Finger Lakes may not come until Friday at the earliest.

Meteorologist Drew Montreuil
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Meteorologist Drew Montreuil has been forecasting the weather in the Finger Lakes region since 2006 and has degrees in meteorology from SUNY Oswego (B.S. with Honors) and Cornell (M.S.) When not forecasting, he can be found working at the local library, making soap, or playing with his two young boys.