April 20th, 2010
10:46 AM ET

Spring storm season off to slowest-ever start

The 2010 spring severe weather season is off to its slowest start on record, according to forecasters from the National Weather Service's Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma.

The agency, which is responsible for issuing forecasts for severe storms, releases daily forecasts that predict the level of severe weather and assigns it to three categories - slight, moderate and high.

Typically, severe storms occur most often in the United States during the months of April, May and June.

"It looks like we've gone the deepest into a year without our first MDT (moderate) or high risk," said Rich Thompson, a forecaster at the prediction center. "The previous latest date was March 21, 2005, so we're almost a month past that date."

The 2005 severe weather season got off to a slow start as well, but turned out to be a record-breaking year for severe weather and tornadoes.

Most of the tornadoes that occurred that year were associated with tropical storms and hurricanes that made landfall. The 2005 hurricane season was the worst on record, with 28 named storms, 15 hurricanes and seven major hurricanes –Category 3 or higher on the Saffir-Simpson scale.

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Filed under: U.S. • Weather
soundoff (72 Responses)
  1. Steven

    @ Nor'easter and the Californians

    I suspect the article is talking about tornado alley style severe thunderstorm weather which is usually pretty dramatic at this point in Spring in the Midwest and parts of the South. It's the moment storm spotters, chasers and photographers wait for all year. Here's a quote from the National Weather Service...

    "The term severe thunderstorm refers to a thunderstorm producing hail that is at least quarter size, 1 inch in diameter or larger, and/or wind gusts to 58 mph or greater, and/or a tornado. Although lightning can be deadly, the NWS doesn't use it to define a severe thunderstorm. If it did, every thunderstorm would be severe, by definition. Also, excessive rainfall may lead to deadly flash flooding, but heavy rain is not a severe criterion either."

    Not to minimize the dangers of flooding (which is the deadliest of all) but I don't think California and New England are experiencing tornadoes and baseball sized hail right now? The author is probably wondering why they don't get to report about houses flying away in Kansas like they usually do this time of year.

    April 20, 2010 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Pepper

    If the month of May is very rainy, then we are going to have very few hurricanes and mild ones for that matter. If it doesn't rain enough in May... then we will have a problem.

    Remember 2005 when it hardly rained in May?
    28 named storms, 15 hurricanes and seven major hurricanes – Category 3 or higher...

    April 20, 2010 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Hi

    yea i live on the east coast and id rather not have to board up my house every month glad we havent had storms yet and i hope we dont that shit takes time and money

    April 20, 2010 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Ernie in New Jersey

    My neighbors have been pumping out their basements and I've been pumping water from my yard since the middle of March. We don't need "severe" weather, or any rain at all!

    April 20, 2010 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Dilla

    Stop complaining. It's about time we have some sunshine!

    April 20, 2010 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  6. mike

    Ask Big Al I am sure he has the answer!

    April 20, 2010 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. alex

    Climate change 'experts' are frantically trying to find ways to increase the number of Spring storms to previous levels.

    April 20, 2010 at 4:02 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Don

    The storms are sitting above Boston and the Northeast! Boston just had the 2nd rainiest month EVER in March. It was gray and raining pretty much the entire month and I think we saw the sun three times that month.

    April 20, 2010 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. zamia

    Where are the spring storms? New Hampshire and the Northeast got savaged by 4 storms with intense rain in late February and all of March. Ferocious wind during the first one, enough to twist, split and snap trees. I've never seen tree damage as severe, not in the modest hurricanes I've been in.
    If Kansas wants them, they can have them back.

    April 20, 2010 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Bill in MN

    "Didn't we just get clobbered by the worst winter in years?"

    If by worst you mean warmest, then yeah.

    April 20, 2010 at 4:10 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Pat McCormack

    Mother Nature has not been slacking off – she has been very busy making the Earth rumble and spew forth its guts.

    April 20, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Lauritaxx

    Nyx, reading medacil textbooks? *bows* Thanks for the FYI re DCD and ADHD. I too find the criteria worthy of mocking, hence the snarky tone, but I don't share your sense of exasperation. I'm pretty sure that longitudinal studies are frozen in time with respect to dx criteria.Jann, LOL I love how you have to keep telling me how NOT autistic your autistic acting child is. Methinks thou dost...ahem, anyhoo, nice to see you've dispensed with the pretense that your subjective experience is anything but universally true fact. Science is for nerds!

    July 14, 2012 at 2:48 am | Report abuse | Reply
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