TORNADOES IN NORTHEASTERN KANSAS, MAY 19, 1960

R. A. GARRETT U.S. Weather Bureau, Topeka, Kans.

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VAUGHN D. ROCKNEY U.S. Weather Bureau, Washington, D.C.

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Abstract

The track of a complex series of tornadoes which occurred in the late afternoon and early evening of May 19, 1960, in northeastern Kansas is described in detail.

A very pronounced “hook-shaped” radar echo was observed with the storm. Time-lapse radar photographs taken from Topeka, Kans. on the WSR-3 radar, clearly reveal that the “hook” is the echo from targets spiralling counter-clockwise into a vortex and that the hook is located in the right rear quadrant (if one faces in the direction toward which the storm is moving) of the parent cloud. The inwardly-spiralling motion into an area near the pole is un-mistakable when viewed by the time-lapse technique. The coincidence of a singular feature at the end of the “hook” echo, with the damage path on the ground, is shown.

Abstract

The track of a complex series of tornadoes which occurred in the late afternoon and early evening of May 19, 1960, in northeastern Kansas is described in detail.

A very pronounced “hook-shaped” radar echo was observed with the storm. Time-lapse radar photographs taken from Topeka, Kans. on the WSR-3 radar, clearly reveal that the “hook” is the echo from targets spiralling counter-clockwise into a vortex and that the hook is located in the right rear quadrant (if one faces in the direction toward which the storm is moving) of the parent cloud. The inwardly-spiralling motion into an area near the pole is un-mistakable when viewed by the time-lapse technique. The coincidence of a singular feature at the end of the “hook” echo, with the damage path on the ground, is shown.

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