Meteorological events that happened on June 9th:
On average, this is the first day Las Vegas, NV reaches 105°.
An F4 tornado hit the town of Worcester, MA killing 90 people. The northeastern states usually remain free of destructive tornadoes, however in this case a low pressure system, responsible for producing severe thunderstorms in Michigan and Ohio the previous day, brought severe weather to New Hampshire and central Massachusetts. The tornado, up to a mile in width at times, tracked 46 miles through Worcester County. Winds are estimated to have reached 250 mph at Holden, MA. 4,000 buildings were destroyed or damaged and 10,000 people left homeless. At the time it was the most costly tornado in U.S. history with over $53 million dollars in damage. Debris from the tornado fell in Boston.
April-like temperatures persisted at Wichita Falls, TX. Morning low temperatures each day from the 9th through the 12th fell into the low to mid 50s, as much as 20 degrees below normal. These temperatures of 56°, 51°, 52°, and 55° respectively, remain record lows for their dates.
Las Vegas, NV recorded a high temperature of 111°, setting a daily record.
Hurricane Alma made landfall over the eastern Florida panhandle becoming the earliest hurricane to make landfall on the United States mainland.
The tornado that struck the town of Gruver in the Texas Panhandle on this date is believed to be the widest tornado in U.S. history with an average path width of 2,500 yards. At times, the monster storm was over two miles wide.
On this date through the 10th marks the anniversary of one of the most tragic weather events ever to occur in the United States. Heavy rains of up to 14 inches fell along the eastern slopes of the northern Black Hills in South Dakota causing extensive and devastating flooding. Many areas received amounts in excess of 6 inches of rain in less than four hours. Most of the damage occurred at Rapid City, SD, but other areas along creeks on the eastern slopes of the Hills also received record flooding. The damage was compounded by the collapse of the Canyon Lake Dam which is located just above Rapid City and sent a wall of water crashing through the city.
The floods took a huge toll on human life as 242 people perished in the waters and 2,932 people were injured. There were 750 homes destroyed with major damage to an additional 2,200 homes, and minor damage to another 3,100 homes. 1,000 to 2,000 cars were damaged by the waters. All told 6,750 families suffered losses. Damage from the floods totaled $165 million dollars. Now Canyon Lake is dammed once again and the flood plain is a series of parks, golf courses and bike paths, which should minimize damage from future floods.
The 1970s were the worst decade for flash floods in U.S. history. Devastating floods struck Buffalo Creek, WV (125 fatalities); Rapid City, SD (238 fatalities); Big Thompson Canyon, CO (145 fatalities); Johnstown, PA (76 fatalities); and Kansas City, MO (23 fatalities). Flash floods killed an average of 127 people each year in the United States between 1972 and 2001. Improvements in forecasting and warning have been effective in reducing the death toll. No single flash flood has killed more than 100 people since 1980 and the 10-year average annual death toll has dropped to 88.
This was the start of the shortest seasonal snow free period on record at Denver, CO. The 94 days began with the last snow of the season was on the previous day (a trace) and the first snow of the next season occurred on September 11th (a trace).
Thunderstorms that developed over the Springfield, MO. area dropped 3.62 inches of rainfall in one hour. This was the greatest hourly rainfall rate recorded for Springfield.
Perhaps Russia's most deadly tornado outbreak struck a region 150-200 miles north and northeast of Moscow, Russia. At least 400 were killed in the towns of Ivanova, Gorki, Kalinin, Kostroma and Yaroslav.
Sacramento, CA came under the grip of a heat wave, which, before it released its grip, would provide 8 consecutive days; from this date through the 16th with temperatures above 100 degrees. Within this period, 6 consecutive days had high temperatures of 105 degrees or greater.
Fresno, CA had 11 consecutive days of triple digit heat starting on this date. This is the longest such stretch on record in June.
Record heat also occurred across the upper Midwest. Preston, MN hit 100° and Caledonia, MN hit 97°; both records for June.
Lightning struck "Tire Mountain" near Denver, CO, destroying two million tires out of a huge pile of six million tires. Thunderstorms spawned three tornadoes around Denver, and a man was killed at Conifer, CO when strong thunderstorm winds lifted up a porch and dropped it on him.
Severe thunderstorms rumbled over Maryland-Virginia area, causing damage from wind, hail, and lightning. 20 barns were destroyed and several mobile homes were damaged. Five people received injuries. Lightning struck several times at Wallops Island, VA, igniting three small NASA rockets, causing them to be accidentally launched.
Thunderstorms produced severe weather from North Carolina to the Central Gulf Coast Region. Hail in North Carolina caused more than $5 million dollars damage to property, and more than $60 million dollars damage to crops. Hail 3.5 inches in diameter was reported at New Bern, NC. Thunderstorms in the Central High Plains produced 18 inches of hail at Fountain, CO.
The temperature at Del Rio, TX soared to an all-time record high of 112°.
This tornado did not stop to pay the toll. After causing some damage at Philadelphia, PA, it crossed the Delaware River, passing over part of the Ben Franklin Bridge. It did not damage the bridge, but did drop a lot of debris on it. An F2 tornado destroyed 6 well-built houses and a school gym at Hockessin, DE. 52 other homes were damaged.
Thunderstorms and heavy downpours dropped a record 3.01 inches of rain at the Buffalo Airport in New York. Rainfall amounts from 3 to 4 inches were reported in Amherst,
Milton FL was deluged with 15.47 inches of rain in 24 hours.
Record heat and prolonged drought in south central Texas left salt deposits on power lines and insulators near the coast, and when nighttime dew caused arcing, the city of Brownsville was plunged into darkness.
0.38 of an inch of rain fell on this date in San Diego, CA in just 30 minutes, which might not sound like much. But in the dry season, it was enough to shatter the old 24-hour rainfall record. Other rainfall totals in San Diego County included: 1.41 inches at Mt. Laguna, 0.98 inches at Escondido and 0.87 inches at Fallbrook. The rare precipitation was the result of dying Hurricane Boris.
A tornado struck the town of Minatare, NE, just southeast of Scottsbluff. 20 homes were destroyed with 30 others damaged along its 4 mile track. Damage estimates exceeded $2.5 million dollars.
Lightning struck a USAir Boeing 737 parked overnight at the Buffalo International Airport in New York. The lightning traveled through the plane to the runway and exploded the concrete runway at the three points of the landing gear. The flying concrete debris caused damage to the fuselage and winds of the plane. The 737 had to be ferried out for repairs. In addition to the damage to the plane and runway, power generators connected to the plane overnight were shorted and blown out.
Red flag alerts were in effect in southwest Colorado's San Juan Mountains for extreme fire danger conditions as 30 mph winds, low relative humidity and tinder dry woodlands were waiting to explode. It was the worst drought in Colorado's recorded weather history. A single spark from an unknown source ignited a large, fast moving fire on Missionary Ridge northeast of Durango, CO on this date. The fire quickly roared out of control and would go on to become the second largest wildfire in Colorado history, burning 73,145 acres.
Hundreds of swimmers ignored red flags warning not to go into the water along the Florida Panhandle as strong thunderstorms caused very rough water and severe rip currents. At least 9 people died and 3 others were hospitalized.
A massive hailstorm with hailstones up to 2.25 inches in diameter struck the south sections of the Denver, CO metropolitan area. Combined damage to homes and automobiles, not including commercial buildings, was estimated at $146.5 million dollars, the 4th costliest insurance disaster in the state's history.
A line of intense thunderstorms marched through Gananoque in southern Ontario, Canada with strong downburst winds and a confirmed F1 tornado. Near Gananoque, a downburst sent a tree onto a home, killing a man standing on his front porch.
A series of thunderstorms dropped between 4 to 5 inches of rain at Barrie, Ontario Canada bringing waist-deep flash flooding, and hail the size of pennies.
The temperature at Denver International Airport, CO plummeted to 31° to set a new record low for the date, shattering the old record of 37°. It also became their latest freeze on record.
Check out my colleague Weather Examiners:
Baltimore, MD area weather with Tony Pann at http://www.examiner.com/x-11224-Baltimore-Weather-Examiner
Orlando, FL area weather with Dr. Steve Oliver at http://www.examiner.com/x-23601-Orlando-Weather-Examiner
Houston, TX area weather & the weekly Weather America Newsletter with Larry Cosgrove at http://www.examiner.com/x-3775-Houston-Weather-Examiner
NOAA Headlines Examiner with Dr. Steve Oliver and IPR at http://www.examiner.com/x-40324-NOAA-Headlines-Examiner