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Tornadoes, wettest August day, large hail, and steamy highs

Almanac 19 August 2014
Almanac 19 August 2014
Grand Rapids Weather Examiner

Tornadoes, wettest August day, large hail, and steamy highs top the list of Michigan weather events on this day in history. From the National Weather Service archives here are the events that happened on August 19.

1939 - A total of 4.22 inches of rain falls for the wettest August day on record at Grand Rapids.

1955 – Record high temperatures across the state including Grand Rapids 98°, Lansing 98°, Alpena 98°, Houghton Lake 97°, Marquette 95°, and Sault Ste. Marie 92°. The record in Marquette was broken in 1976 with a high of 98°.

1973 - An F1 tornado touched down 0.6 miles SE of Republic in the midafternoon. It was on the ground for 0.5 mile, was 33 yards wide, and caused $2500 worth of property damage.

1977 - Cool air from Canada brings record lows of 37° at Lansing and 43° at Grand Rapids and 44° in Detroit.

1978- Golf ball sized hail (1.75 inch) fell 1.7 miles south southwest of Houghton out of a severe thunderstorm in the early morning.

1983 - A severe thunderstorm produced a 75 mph wind gust in Lake Superior 5.6 miles north of Copper Harbor in the early morning.

1996 - Severe thunderstorms produce damaging winds from Cadillac to Ionia. Montcalm County is one of the hardest hit places. Numerous trees are blown down from Greenville to Sheridan. In the town of Sheridan, there several reports of building damage mostly to roofs. A school in Greenville had a large plate glass window blown out.

1998 - Flint experienced a record cold temperature of 41° for that day.

2010 - A supercell developed over far northern Saginaw late in the afternoon, then tracked southeast along a frontal boundary. This storm produced a swath of wind damage with winds up to 80 mph, large hail up to golf ball size, and eventually two tornadoes as it moved through Macomb County. The first tornado touched down near the intersection of 22 Mile and Hayes Road, tracking south-southeast before lifting just east of Hayes Road on M-59. Maximum winds were estimated to be up to 90 mph with this EF1 tornado. Damage included multiple homes with roof damage, along with downed trees and power lines. The second tornado touched down just east of Romeo Plank and north of Canal Road. The tornado tracked southeast before lifting just west of the intersection of 14 Mile Road and Harper Avenue. Maximum winds were estimated up to 85 mph with this EF0 tornado. A few homes sustained window, garage, and shingle damage. Numerous trees were blown down.

2011 - A deep low pressure system moving through northwest Ontario pushed a warm front across western Upper Michigan in the morning hours followed by a cold frontal passage in the afternoon. The frontal boundaries produced several severe thunderstorms and two weak tornadoes over western Upper Michigan. The spotter at the headquarters of Porcupine Mountains State Park reported severe downdrafts, trees falling, dime-sized hail, significant lightning and heavy rain and runoff for approximately 20 minutes. Four large trees fell across roads, blocking lanes in the park 4 miles west of Silver City at 0647 EST. A strong EF0 tornado with winds estimated around 85 mph touched down at the River Pines RV Park and Campground at 0705 EST and then skipped northeastward across the village lifting on the east side of the Ontonagon Golf Course. Most of the damage was confined to snapped and uprooted trees, snapped power poles, a small flipped boat, minor roof damage, and some structural damage to a garage. There were no injuries and $20,000 in damage. An apple tree six inches in diameter was knocked down and various tree branches three inches in diameter were also down. Hanging plants were blown off the porch 5.7 miles south southeast of Greenland at 0715 EST. 1 inch hail (quarter sized) fell 1 miles south of South Republic at 1555 EST. Pea to penny-sized hail was also reported 3.5 miles south of Republic. 1.25 inch hail (half dollar sized) fell 4.1 miles north of Menominee at 1505 CST. Eight to ten-inch diameter tree down on road 2.9 miles north of Menominee at 1628 CST. About a dozen trees were uprooted and numerous branches broken in the Escanaba River State Forest along the Menominee River with an EF0 tornado that crossed the river into Michigan, then went back into Wisconsin at 1556 CST 3.6 miles east southeast of Wausaukee, Wisconsin.

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