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Old 19-11-2017, 19:22   #1
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Where were you for the 1998 Super Storm?

I reflect on the storm in another thread concerning damage done during a recent storm in Australia, so though I'd copy my observations here. Where were you?


In 1998 the mid-southern shore of Lake Ontario experienced epic destruction following a thunderstorm. The weather service, after a few days, announced that indeed there had not been tornados which is what everyone surmised. Instead, they said the damage was due to microbursts, a term new to most of us in the area.

Following the storm, an old salt (who also happened to own a different marina) emerged from belowdecks on his 42' brick shithouse powerboat a bit confused because his view wasn't what he expected. His boat had spun 180 degrees from the linear docking position. The bow and spring lines (which I'm sure were 3/4" or more) had ripped out the cleats and he was hanging by one line.

Our boat- not 50m away- looked like nothing happened.

Three boats at anchor were dismasted. Two were Beneteaus. I say that not to disparage Beneteaus, but because Beneteaus had only recently become popular, ergo most Beneteaus were at least 1990 models- more likely 1995+. Thus, being in fresh water and with a standing rig that was only a few years old, one can only imagine what it would take to dismast those boats. At least one of the Beneteaus the mast was snapped in half.

If one has ever heard a mature tree snap in half, it sounds like a bomb. I recall hearing repeated explosions of trees during the storm. In some areas, acres of trees were destroyed, snapped in half. The undergrowth was completely gone- it looked like Tunguska. The trees weren't blown over, they were blown to pieces. Yet, less than a klick away the forests were fine.

Wind gusts were reported by NWS at 115 MPH- in an area that wasn't particularly harmed. Here is the Wikipedia summary https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Yo...r_Day_derechos
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Old 20-11-2017, 04:30   #2
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Re: Where were you for the 1998 Super Storm?

I've seen the after-effects of a microburst several times. Like you, I'd never heard of the term until several people were killed by one a couple of towns over.

It seems every time, people assume it was a tornado, but then the experts assure us that it was "only" a microburst. I understand the distinction, but that doesn't make it any easier on the victims.
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Old 20-11-2017, 05:56   #3
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Re: Where were you for the 1998 Super Storm?

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Originally Posted by CaptTom View Post
I've seen the after-effects of a microburst several times. Like you, I'd never heard of the term until several people were killed by one a couple of towns over..

It seems that microbursts are now more widely recognized.

I was in Siam Reap, Combodia when a storm came through. Homes were flattened and 11 people were killed. Microbursts.

It's odd, because I've been in more severe thunderstorms that apparently did not induce microbursts.
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Old 20-11-2017, 06:33   #4
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Where were you for the 1998 Super Storm?

Just looking at the title of the link it was a derecho
http://www.spc.noaa.gov/misc/AbtDere...rechofacts.htm
I learned want one was during what was later called the Mothers day massacre at Ft Hood, where millions of dollars of damage was done to the aircraft
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Old 20-11-2017, 18:10   #5
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Re: Where were you for the 1998 Super Storm?

I worked for the utitlity based in Syracuse NY and did storm restoration work for a week afterwards. To this day you can see trees blown down on the hill sides on RT 481 bypass of Syracuse.

My sailboat was safely garaged at home in Oswego NY and it seemed like just a standard thunder storm passing there.
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Old 21-11-2017, 05:43   #6
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Re: Where were you for the 1998 Super Storm?

Downbursts, Derechos, Microbursts & Haboobs

Storm Types: Downbursts, Derechos, Microbursts & Haboobs - Video & Lesson Transcript | Study.com
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