BROOKINGS, S.D. — Numerous severe thunderstorms brought high rain rates, strong winds and nine confirmed tornadoes to the state June 13, 2017.
Throughout the storms, meteorologists across the state relied on the South Dakota Mesonet, a community-supported network of live weather stations operated by South Dakota State University to keep them up to date on the storm so they could warn South Dakotans of impending danger.
“The Mesonet keeps the public, agriculture producers, utility companies, emergency managers and the National Weather Service informed of weather developments as they happen,” said Nathan Edwards, Manager of the Mesonet. “Some of the state’s top wind gusts Tuesday – which trigger National Weather Service issuance of warnings – were reported by the Mesonet.”
Edwards explained that the Mesonet’s unique capabilities to monitor water balance helped the U.S. Drought Monitor accurately reflect drought conditions last week and will help determine the level of relief these areas saw with the storms’ rainfall.
“Improved evaporation calculations along with new soil moisture maps are critical to getting a complete view of drought that just can’t be had looking at rainfall alone,” Edwards said.
Weather highlights from June 13, 2017
With nearly 80 percent of the state ranging from “abnormally dry” to “severe drought,” Edwards said the June 13 storms brought welcomed rainfall to some – others dealt with power outages or structural damage from wind.
Live and archived data are available from the state’s 26 Mesonet stations can be found online. June 13 storms drove more traffic to the website than any other day in the site’s history.
Mesonet@SDSTATE reports for June 13, 2017-
Rainfall totals greater than 1 inch:
- Webster* – 3.34
- South Shore – 2.51
- Groton* – 1.69
- Redfield* – 1.49
- Britton* – 1.47
- Sioux Falls Landfill – 1.30
- Pierre* – 1.19
- Gettysburg** – 1.19
*moderate drought as of June 6
**severe drought as of June 6
Peak wind gusts greater than 40 miles per hour:
- Parkston – 62
- Webster – 60
- Beresford – 61
- Colton – 56
- Britton – 51
- Flandreau – 45
- Gettysburg – 44
- White Lake – 44
- Groton – 43
- South Shore – 43
— SDSU Extension
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