“Low End” Derecho Hits The U.S.
Last week the upper mid-section of the U.S. and into the East Coast came a massive fast moving thunderstorm system. Meteorologists declared the system as a “Derecho”. The label has been used on these kinds of storms since the late 19th Century (that’s the late 1800s for those who have problems with century dates). Derecho means “direct” or “straight ahead” in Spanish, and refers to a widespread, long-lived wind storm associated with bands of fast-moving thunderstorms.
These storms typically begin in the Midwestern and Great Lake regions and move quickly east. They cause damage over a 240-mile (400-kilometer) front/line and produce wind gusts of at least 58 miles (93 kilometers) per hour.
The storm that passed through this area in June 2013 qualified as a Derecho, but it wasn’t as strong as the same type of system that followed this same path in June 2012. That powerful storm brought hurricane-force winds to numerous states, killed 22 people, and knocked out electric power for millions. While officials are still calculating the damage from this years storm of 2013, you can learn a little more about “Low End” Derecho from NASA’s Earth Observatory’s story “Low-end” Derecho Hits Eastern United States.