Changes to SPC outlooks

October 20th, 2014 at 4:00 pm by under Weather

You’ve likely heard us say, “we’re under a slight risk for severe weather.” Or, maybe even, “we’re under a moderate risk for severe weather.” The Storm Prediction Center out of Norman, Oklahoma issues these severe storm outlooks, and starting October 22, the outlooks are undergoing a big change.

In the past, there were slight, moderate, and high risk outlooks.

The new outlooks will include two new categories. These outlooks will now be one of the following listed in order from lower to higher risk:

1. Marginal (MRGL) – replaces the current SEE TEXT and now is described with Categorical line on the SPC Outlook.
2. Slight (SLGT)
3. Enhanced (ENH) – will replace upper-end SLGT risk probabilities, but is not a MDT risk
4. Moderate (MDT)
5. High (HIGH)

The Storm Prediction Center says it’s making these changes “to bring better consistency to the risks communicated in SPC outlooks.”

I highly suggest you visit the SPC’s  page with all of the details and read up on the new outlooks. To visit that page, click the example of a new outlook below.



We want your foliage photos!

October 20th, 2014 at 8:39 am by under Weather

It’s that time of year when the chlorophyll in tree leaves disappears, revealing brilliant oranges, reds, and yellows. We’ve had a pretty nice foliage season here in northeast Indiana and northwest Ohio thanks to sunny days and cool nights. Foliage is right at it’s peak, but with the recent winds and rain, many of the leaves are being knocked off the trees before they’re brown. If you had the chance to take any fantastic foliage snapshots on Sunday, we want to see them! You can send those in to We’ll feature some of these in a photo gallery online or on NewsChannel 15!

Today won’t be the best day to admire what color is left on the trees, especially with the clouds, wind, and scattered showers. Tuesday won’t feature much sun either. But starting Wednesday, sunshine returns and should allow for some great photos!

Back to work & school forecast

October 19th, 2014 at 6:13 pm by under Weather

It’s hard to believe the weekend is already ending. Sunday morning gave us a frosty start, but luckily, Monday morning won’t be nearly as cool.

As you head out the door in the morning, bring the jacket and umbrella with you. The umbrella won’t be needed very often, but we will watch a few showers in the area throughout the day. That’s all thanks to this disturbance to the north. Our area will catch the tail end of the cold front which could bring a shower or two through the area. Ahead of the cold front, we’ll see a breezy southwest wind 10-15 mph which will allow temps to climb to near 60° by the afternoon.




Behind this cold front, temps will cool off a little bit. Temps look to stay in the low to mid 50s for Tuesday. But bigger changes on the warmer side of things can be found by the end of the week and into next weekend. The Climate Prediction Center shows our likelihood of overall warmer than average temps during the last week of October. The average high is around 60°. You’ll find middle 60s in our forecast as early as next weekend. The reason? An impressive ridge to our west will setup and stick around. This brings in the warmer air for the south and keeps the cold/arctic air bottled up to the north. Enjoy it!

Source: CPC

Source: CPC

Chilly start to Sunday

October 19th, 2014 at 12:42 pm by under Weather

Just as forecast, the showers ended last evening and the clouds quickly decreased overnight. The mostly clear skies, combined with a diminishing wind, set the stage for temperatures to plummet by sunrise. Widespread frost was reported throughout the area this morning, with many folks having to dig out the car ice scrapers for the first time this fall. Take a look at some of the temperatures reported early this morning:

It was the coldest morning of the fall (so far) for many places.

It was the coldest morning of the fall (so far) for many places.

With clouds increasing this evening and the chance for showers returning overnight, temperatures won’t drop nearly as much tonight. In fact, most places should remain in the mid-40s by sunrise.

Coriolis Effect

October 18th, 2014 at 5:27 pm by under Weather

The Coriolis Effect. Does it sound familiar? It’s one of the most important forces that drives weather patterns, ocean currents, and it even affects your flights! It’s driven by the rotation of the Earth. More specifically, it occurs because different parts of the Earth rotate at different speeds. Those of you that have heard of Coriolis, may be familiar with the popular belief that it’s the reason toilets flush one way in the northern hemisphere and in the opposite direction in the southern hemisphere. While this idea is on the right track of how Coriolis affects things, your toilet is on much too small of scale to be affected by it. SciJinks has a great article that explains the importance and dynamics behind Coriolis. I highly recommend it!

Click the picture below for more information!

Source: SciJinks

Source: SciJinks

Frosty stats

October 18th, 2014 at 1:15 pm by under Weather

Once clouds decrease and winds die down tonight, the stage is set for temperatures to drop down to freezing or a bit below. In fact, we have a good chance of seeing the coldest conditions of the season (so far) come tomorrow morning. So far, the coldest thermometer reading recorded at the airport this fall is 34° (last Sunday morning). Our forecast low for Fort Wayne tonight is 31°. Some surrounding areas may possibly drop into the upper 20s!

A Freeze Watch is in effect for our area through tomorrow morning.

A Freeze Watch is in effect for our area through tomorrow morning.

So how does this compare to average? According to stats compiled by the National Weather Service, this is right around when we should see our first freeze. The NWS points out that frosty conditions can occur with temperatures in the mid-30s. A freeze happens with temperatures at or just below freezing. A hard freeze is defined by temperatures 28° or lower.

We're right on track for the first freeze of the season tonight.

We’re right on track for the first freeze of the season tonight.

While a widespread hard freeze is not expected by tomorrow morning, most places will see frost and, likely, freeze conditions. Be sure to bring in any of the potted plants you may still have outside because they may not make it after tonight!

Check out this page for a complete look at the frost/freeze stats for our area.

Wild Zoo Halloween

October 17th, 2014 at 9:23 pm by under Weather

The zoo is looking a little different these days…that’s because it’s time for WILD ZOO HALLOWEEN – a favorite Fort Wayne event for kids (of all ages).  For this special event, the zoo is open from 12 pm – 5 pm on these days: Oct. 17-19, Oct. 23-26, and Oct. 30-31.

If you plan to head out on Saturday, wear an extra layer under your costume because there will definitely be a chill in the air.  We’re going to be cloudy with temps hovering around 50° during the afternoon.  Plus, it’s going to be windy, too!  You should expect sustained NW winds 10-15 mph and gusts to 25 mph – adding to the cold feeling of the day.  Some scattered sprinkles are possible, so bring the umbrella, too.

Admission is $5 per person or $9 for admission and trick-or-treating!  To learn more, visit the zoo’s website.

This is the first weekend of 2014's Wild Zoo Halloween!

Wild Zoo Halloween forecast for Saturday, October 18, 2014

NOAA issues winter 2014-2015 outlook

October 17th, 2014 at 9:13 am by under Weather

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)’s Climate Prediction Center released their outlook for the 2014-2015 winter season yesterday and you may not like the sounds of it if you’re a snow-lover. The outlook calls for temperatures to hover around average here in northeast Indiana and northwest Ohio. It also calls for below average precipitation. In fact, the outlook says there’s a greater than 40% chance that much of our area will be drier than average this winter.

To make these outlooks, the Climate Prediction Center looked at a number of different teleconnections and factors, including the potential for an El Nino, various ocean oscillations, and weather patterns. As we all know, last winter broke records for how cold and snowy it was.  Check out the outlook the Climate Prediction Center issued for last winter:

The Live Doppler 15 Fury Storm Team is also in the process of making a winter outlook for our area. We’ll unveil this in the 15 Fury Winter Weather Special, airing in December. Stay tuned!

Friday night football

October 16th, 2014 at 7:11 pm by under Weather

It’s been a week where we’ve had a hard time kicking the rain chances completely to the curb…so, yes, that means some raindrops will be possible, again, tomorrow.  Most of Friday will be dry, though, until our next weather system drops in later in the day, bringing us an influx of clouds and the additional raindrops.

Friday Night Football Forecast for 10/17/14

Friday Night Football Forecast for 10/17/14

The rain will be light and scattered, arriving during late evening, when many will be out at area Friday night football games.  These pesky, stubborn showers may dampen the mood at some area football fields, but they won’t completely ruin all the fun.  Have the poncho ready and you’ll be good to go, if one of the showers falls where you are.

Earth wind visualization

October 16th, 2014 at 9:12 am by under Weather

With two tropical systems making headlines (Hurricane Gonzalo off the coast of Bermuda and Tropical Storm Ana southeast of Hawaii) I thought I would share one of my favorite links – a visualization of the winds across the globe. This visualization directly shows the counter-clockwise rotation associated with the aforementioned storms – which are areas of low pressure. I love the interactivity of this map too! It allows you to zoom in on features of interest and take a broader perspective of what’s happening at a particular part of the globe. See if you can find these storms (click on the image below):

This visualization shows the global wind patterns.

This visualization shows the global wind patterns. Image courtesy:

Hurricane Gonzalo is currently a Category 4 storm with wind speeds of up to 140 mph. It is forecast to move right over Bermuda tomorrow as a major hurricane. Meanwhile in the Pacific, Tropical Storm Ana is expected to strengthen to Category 1 status (winds up to 95 mph) before impacting Hawaii this weekend. Since 1950, only four hurricanes have come within 150 nautical miles of Hawaii’s capital city of Honolulu. The impacts of Ana are still uncertain – it may just bring rain and gusty winds or it could become a significant storm.

Latest satellite imagery of Hurricane Ana in the Pacific.

Latest satellite imagery of Hurricane Ana in the Pacific. Courtesy: National Hurricane Center.