Weather Flashback

March 2023 - Hail Sale (April 29, 2021)


Along with thousands of other vehicles, the body and windows of this Chevy was damaged by very large, very high wind-driven hail on April 28, 2021. This scene was logged in my April 28, 2021 storm spotting entry, for reference. The entry even includes a video of the event from in front of the light brown colored building in the background, which is a Homeland grocery store. What made this hail event particularly unique is that the hailstones were both very large as well as driven by very high winds. Basically, the large, failing hailstones got swept into the storm's rear flank downdraft; the storm, a supercell thunderstorm, which processed a tremendous amount of air from tens-of-miles around, and then "spat it out" towards the ground in a short amount of time. The downward transport of faster moving air from higher aloft, unrelated to air entering through the storm's updraft, probably also contributed to the wind-driven component of the impact. Although I have yet to analyze radar velocity data from the event too carefully. And sometimes even those data are inadequate to trace the circulation of air inside a supercell thunderstorm. 

Nevertheless, not long after this scene was captured, the Equinox along with numerous other vehicles along Norman's "Mile of Cars" were sold at much lower than sticker value; hence the title: "hail sale." Fortunately for the girls and me, we were well south of Norman when the storm hit, mostly in the storm's dusty elongated inflow notch. So, my vehicle did not get damaged from hail. However, we did loose several windows at our house a few miles away from the vehicle lot shown. We also ultimately had to have our roof replaced as holes from the hail lead to a series of major leaks! Those leaks got even worse following a second severe hail storm in October of that year. And because of the severity and extent of the damage, it took months for many, including us, to get repairs done; so that by the time the second severe hail storm hit a few months later, a large number of homes and businesses were already in need of repair. Circling back to the night of the severe hail storm in April, not long after the storm passed, a very thick hail fog developed. That eerie looking fog was in place through through at least sunrise, locally, as we hung out and told stories in candle light with no electricity. 

Plate 1. Hail Sale. Captured on April 29, 2021 at 3:23pm CDT. Impact form very large, very high wind-driven hail on April 28, 2021. Looking east from 35.232°, -97.484°.