Chief Meteorologist John Harris talks about storm damage in the High Plains | KAMR


AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – After storms moved through the High Plains region from Tuesday evening to Wednesday morning, several communities had to deal with storm damage.

Chief Meteorologist John Harris said after 8 p.m. Tuesday the area saw severe thunderstorms coming in from the west.

“But then a cluster of thunderstorms moved into southwest Kansas and the Oklahoma Panhandle, and those thunderstorms were very messy. They were producing strong straight-line winds, heavy rain, flooding and also large hail up to the size of soft bullets.

Around 9:25 p.m., Harris said a tornado warning was issued for Texas County, when a supercell passed over Guymon.

He said the National Weather Service sent a team to Guymon on Wednesday to examine the pattern of debris to determine if it really was a tornado. Harris said the results of their investigation showed the damage was due to straight-line winds of up to 90 miles per hour.

“The pattern of the debris could indicate it was a rotating wind, but we haven’t heard anything about it. Also, I know there was probably some damage with the hailstones that are fell last night around Perryton and Spearman and back towards Beaver, Oklahoma,” Harris said. “If those hailstones were thrown horizontally, it would cause quite a bit of damage to a building.”

The northeastern quadrant of the Texas Panhandle also saw heavy hail Tuesday evening, according to Harris, and early Wednesday morning another line of thunderstorms rolled in from the north, bringing strong, straight-line winds.

“A lot of places came in with 60 to 70 miles per hour plus wind speeds last night, not tornadic winds, but in a straight line. And hurricane force winds are starting at 74 miles per hour,” he said. he said. “So a lot of these winds were hurricane force when they blew. And so it did damage to outbuildings, fences, utility poles. And then also we had the strong rain that came after that.

He said the rainfall is really just a drop in the ocean.

“It depends on where you live. Our eastern counties have actually had several days over the last few weeks where they’ve had a lot of rain, and so that’s helped them tremendously. Right here in Amarillo, we kind of missed last night.

Harris said Wednesday’s morning rainfall was the best we’ve seen since our snowfall in March, which turned into a heavy melt.

“So for the year we are over five inches of rain, but we still have a deficit of up to one and six tenths of an inch below where we should be,” he said. .


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