Severe Thunderstorms and an EF0 Tornado Strike Northeast Florida

Event Date: Monday, November 17, 2014

A line of strong, to occasionally severe, thunderstorms moved across northeast Florida ahead of an intense cold front during the afternoon of Monday, November 17th, 2014.  These storms brought strong winds, frequent lightning, and very heavy rainfall.

Widespread straight line winds of 45 to 55 mph with localized area winds of up to 60 to 70 mph were common over portions of Baker, Duval, Clay, Nassau, and northern St. Johns counties associated with a squall line.

From: The Florida Times-Union, Will Dickey
From: The Florida Times-Union, Will Dickey – tractor-trailer flipped on Dames Point Bridge.
From @ActionNewsJax via @stormchaser4850
From @ActionNewsJax via @stormchaser4850

Within the line of thunderstorms, a circulation formed over Columbia County in northern Florida, and tracked east-northeast over portions of southern Baker, northern Union, and southern Duval Counties, as highlighted by the image below.  At one point, NWS Doppler Radar was detecting winds up to 80 mph over northern Union and southern Baker Counties.

Nov17BaseVeloPath

This resulted in one confirmed tornado touchdown of 65 to 75 mph (EF-0) over southern Baker county. The path length was 1.09 miles, and the width was 75 to 125 yards.

tornadopath

baker1

baker2

baker3

baker4

One tornado touchdown has been confirmed in southern Baker County, radar showed areas that received significant damage, from severe straight-line winds.  The animations below show the track of a particularly intense storm from Columbia County to eastern Duval County.  You can easily see the circulation within this storm on the velocity animation, as illustrated by the green/red couplet detected within this storm.

ReflectivityNov17

Nov17SRMLoop

Pictures of an NWS Jacksonville employee’s daughter taking shelter during the height of the storm on Monday afternoon.

Shelter 11-18-2014 2-44-53 PM

Shelter 11-18-2014 2-43-37 PM