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IMPRESSIVE RAIN: Wow. I'm still not sure I believe what we've seen since Thursday night. Four years of drought will do that to you. Yesterday we picked up 1.60" of rain at Lubbock's airport, second day in a row to set the record for the date. YTD we're now up to 6.13", which is 0.39" above the YTD average.
From Thursday night through yesterday evening we picked up 5.23" of rain. Coming into last week we had only 0.90" of precip for the entire year. The good news is it wasn't just the airport getting the rain, the heavy stuff fell across much of the area with widespread rain all across the region. Looks like some of the heaviest totals run from eastern Hale/western Floyd counties down into Crosby County.
Yesterday's storms were the strongest of the past few days. There were some landspouts that developed south of Levelland and south of Smyer as that storm rolled east. Once it got into Lubbock it produced some wind damage...some roofs damaged, trees and utility poles knocked down.
I commend the National Weather Service Lubbock office on handling these landspouts. We had a discussion at their office earlier this year, they mentioned they'd usually go with a severe weather statement or severe thunderstorm warning with reports of landspouts, unless we saw something doing major damage. This is better than a tornado warning, in my opinion, since these things usually last less than a minute and don't cause widespread destruction. These landspout tornadoes are usually not connected to a strong mesocyclone; the organization isn't there to produce long-lasting, violent rotation to the ground. This said, the severe thunderstorm warning was warranted and it verified. We had wind damage in eastern Hockley and Lubbock counties...this is why you have to take severe thunderstorm warnings seriously.
QUIETER WEATHER: The powerful upper low that's been west of us for several days is finally edging east. It's been nice having it to our west for all this rain. It's moving out of the Panhandle into Oklahoma and will spread the rain setup well east and southeast of here. It'll be muggy today with all the water on the ground, high in the mid 80s, wind E/NE 5-15mph.
We'll hold in the mid to upper 80s next few days with lots of sunshine. You'll notice the humidity in the air. With the wet ground it'll take a few days to climb back to 90...no one complaining about this.
An upper-level ridge will likely get a little stronger late this week into the weekend. We also may see some more Pacific moisture move this way if Hurricane Amanda meanders closer to the Baja. It doesn't look like a setup for rain as much as just more clouds.
Rudy will have a full update to this forecast later today.