BOW ECHO DURING RUSH HOUR IN D/FW
Date: 24 April 2015
- Chaser: David Reimer
- Location: near south Fort Worth, TX
The Storm Prediction Center had an enhanced risk of severe weather in place. A complex of thunderstorms initially developed well southwest of the D/FW Metroplex during the afternoon hours. I elected to remain in the D/FW Metroplex targeting isolated mini-supercells. The cells I were targeting were unable to become particularly organized. By 5:30 PM I decided to intercept the complex of storms approaching the D/FW Metroplex from the southwest. The complex was becoming a high-end wind producer with radar indicating wind gusts over 80 MPH. I was located near D/FW Airport and needed to make it to the south side of Fort Worth – no easy feat during afternoon rush hour. Normally the trip would take about 25 minutes. Compounding the traffic situation was heavy rain occurring across most of the Metroplex. I had to get creative with my road options since highways were gridlocked with accidents. Surface roads weren’t much better since it seems every road in Fort Worth was under construction. My plan was to meet the thunderstorm complex around I-35W at Interstate 20 and follow it east into Dallas County. With all the traffic it took me nearly an hour to make it down there from the west side of D/FW Airport. The complex of storms arrived at nearly the same time at my location. By that point, it had become a Quasi-Linear Convective System (QLCS) and was well organized. An embedded circulation attempted to become tornadic near my location but was completely rain-wrapped. A QLCS tends to produce widespread damaging winds with embedded brief tornadoes. In those situations, it doesn’t matter which one impacts you since intensity differences between the straight-line winds or tornadic winds don’t differ. I was impacted by 50 to 60 MPH west winds on I-35W just south of I-20. I continued to try and keep up with the line as we both moved east on Interstate 20. It was booking it and I was unable to catch back up to it due to heavy rain/road conditions. I stopped off in Cedar Hill to visit my folks and was treated to an impressive lightning barrage on the back edge of the line around 7 PM. I headed back to Norman from there and was treated to a beautiful sunset as the back-edge of the line moved east.
The map will display the approximate location of this chase (town). It should not be used for specific location information.