This paper considers a tornadic storm that struck south-central and eastern Kansas on 13 March 1990. Most of the devastation was associated with the first tornado from the storm as it passed through Hesston, Kansas. From the synoptic-scale and mesoscale viewpoints, the event was part of an outbreak of tornadoes on a day when the tornado threat was synoptically evident. Satellite imagery, combined with conventional data, suggest that the Hesston storm was affected by a preexisting, mesoscale outflow boundary laid down by morning storms. Radar and satellite data give clear indication of the supercellular character of the storm, despite limited radar data coverage.

Because of the considerable photographic coverage, several interesting features of the storm were recorded and are analyzed here. These include the following: 1) the movement and dissipation of a cloud band associated with an apparent rear-flank downdraft; 2) a transition from a rather large funnel through an apparent dissipation to the formation of a narrow funnel, during which the damage on the ground was continuous; and 3) a period of interaction between the first and second tornadoes.

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Footnotes

*Wichita, Kansas.

+NOAA/ERL National Severe Storms Laboratory, Norman, Oklahoma.

**NOAA/NWS Operational Support Facility, Norman, Oklahoma.

++NOAA/NESDIS—RAMM Branch, Fort Collins, Colorado.