Biggest Busts (1 Viewer)

Messages
41
Reaction score
38
Location
Oakland, Tennessee
Right there in the title, state what you think the biggest bust of recent times is.

My vote?

May 20, 2019

Oh yes. The HRRR and NAM showed an extraordinary day with many, many, many cells. The SPC issued a >95% risk of all hazards tornado watch. There was a 45% chance of storms. It was perfect, everything was lining up for one of the biggest outbreaks, if not the biggest, of the century.

But do you know what happened? Overcast skies and haze from Mexican wildfires helped bolster the cap, which largely stayed in place. Most of the above mentioned watch saw partly cloudy skies and only four significant tornadoes (Mangum (which would have been an EF5 if it hit anything at peak according to radar measured winds, but moving on), Odessa, Midland and Peggs to Kansas (a town in Delaware County OK, not the state)) occurred, none of them (officially, see Mangum) violent. It was truly the biggest bust of the decade, if not the century. Texas and Oklahoma dodged a massive bullet.

What's your pick?
 

OHWX97

Member
Messages
582
Reaction score
560
Location
Norwood, Ohio
The impact of distant wildfires on tornadic events is very interesting. Mexican wildfires were a big factor in helping smother the historic potential on May 20, 2019, yet apparently, Central American fires enhanced the already historic potential on April 27, 2011.

Anyways, as for huge busts, April 13, 2007 immediately comes to mind. High risk with DFW smack dab in the middle of it. Only a few weak tornadoes were confirmed that day.
April_13,_2007_SPC_High_Risk.png
070413_rpts.png
 
Messages
1,590
Reaction score
1,380
Location
Madison, WI
I chased 5/20/19 after a marathon drive from Madison, was in front of the Mangum supercell on US 62 near Gould, OK before it produced; but waited too long to move and got stuck in the conga line, never saw anything but murk and the taillights of 500 other chasers in front of me.

Lately I've seen 4/11/2005 mentioned (can't remember whether it was here or on another forum) as a pretty bad high risk bust. On the 1630 UTC outlook a small high risk upgrade was added encompassing parts of Louisiana and western Mississippi, but the entire day only produced three F0 tornadoes.

Then there are also "reverse" busts (no significant event is expected, but one occurs). April 20, 2004 had only a "SEE TEXT" (the then-equivalent of a marginal risk, with 5% hail and wind contours) outlook along a warm front in Illinois as of the 2000 UTC outlook. Instead, a cluster of small supercells produced an outbreak of over 30 tornadoes including an F3 that killed 8 people. August 18, 2005 could also be considered one. A slight risk and 5% tornado contour ended up producing Wisconsin's state record tornado outbreak including the long-track killer F3 that just missed my house near Stoughton.

SPC and the NWP they use have come a long way in the last 15 or so years, but they're still certainly not perfect.
 

Brice Wood

Member
Messages
284
Reaction score
159
Location
Virginia
Right there in the title, state what you think the biggest bust of recent times is.

My vote?

May 20, 2019

Oh yes. The HRRR and NAM showed an extraordinary day with many, many, many cells. The SPC issued a >95% risk of all hazards tornado watch. There was a 45% chance of storms. It was perfect, everything was lining up for one of the biggest outbreaks, if not the biggest, of the century.

But do you know what happened? Overcast skies and haze from Mexican wildfires helped bolster the cap, which largely stayed in place. Most of the above mentioned watch saw partly cloudy skies and only four significant tornadoes (Mangum (which would have been an EF5 if it hit anything at peak according to radar measured winds, but moving on), Odessa, Midland and Peggs to Kansas (a town in Delaware County OK, not the state)) occurred, none of them (officially, see Mangum) violent. It was truly the biggest bust of the decade, if not the century. Texas and Oklahoma dodged a massive bullet.

What's your pick?
I wonder what would’ve happened if there wasn’t any stout cap that was unexpectedly in place, I’d say we would’ve had an outbreak like 5/24/11 with multiple high end violent tornadoes,
 

Brice Wood

Member
Messages
284
Reaction score
159
Location
Virginia
I wonder what would’ve happened if there wasn’t any stout cap that was unexpectedly in place, I’d say we would’ve had an outbreak like 5/24/11 with multiple high end violent tornadoes,
If this produced the storms the way the hype did, we’d be looking at Oklahoma and Texas’s worst outbreak in history potentially (not the worst tornado in history)
 
Messages
561
Reaction score
373
Location
St. Catharines, Ontario
The biggest bust I've seen since I started watching severe weather was probably April 5, 2017. As well as the 30% tornado probability, there was a PDS watch with a >95% chance of tornadoes and an 80% chance of EF2+ tornadoes. In the end there were only 5 tornado reports in the high risk area, including one EF2.

1650037257201.png
1650037298203.png

For the worst bust of all time, I'm pretty sure not much can top 4/11/2005. Another high risk day that was described in the outlook as an "extremely dangerous situation" with long-tracked intense to violent tornadoes expected. According to chasers on Stormtrack, the SPC was basically expecting something similar to Super Tuesday 2008. A number of chasers were back home by mid afternoon because it became clear pretty quickly that the day would bust hard, and it did. 2 tornadoes were confirmed, both EF0, and one was barely in the 2% risk zone.

1650042859074.png
1650068420448.png
 

Attachments

  • 1650037220188.png
    1650037220188.png
    44.8 KB · Views: 0
Last edited:

Users who are viewing this thread

Top