(WKBN) — Throughout northeast Ohio and Western Pennsylvania it has been a quiet severe weather spring season to this point. It can always change, but so far severe weather has been limited locally.
We did have a few big wind storms early in the spring, but those were large storm systems that were able to mix down wind in a widespread path. They produced quite a bit of damage across eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania with power outages and tree damage.
Individual strong or severe thunderstorms have been limited.
Is severe weather and tornadoes possible today?
This time of the year, on average, is the beginning of our trend to see more severe weather. The current forecast features more dry weather than wet after we clear a cold front late tonight and early Saturday morning. You can keep up with the early weekend rain or thunderstorm chance here with Youngstown Weather Radar.
Below is a look at the average severe weather for this date across the country.
So far this year, our part of the country has been spared by the roughest weather. You can see the number of tornado watches and severe thunderstorm watches below. You can always see if there are any watches or warnings in our area here.
When does tornado season peak in our area?
We are slipping into one of two peaks of tornado season here in northeast Ohio and western Pennsylvania.
Late May into early June throughout the years has proven to be a time of the year with increased potential for not only severe thunderstorms and flooding, but tornadoes too.
Some of our biggest tornado outbreaks locally have happened during this period of the year. This includes the May 31, 1985 tornado outbreak.
This outbreak caused widespread damage and destruction.
Looking at the running average of tornadoes per day in the image above, you can see there is a spike in late May and early June. Late June into early July the spike falls back some.
Another spike in tornadoes per day starts in mid-July and lasts through the end of the month. After late July, the trend for tornadoes decreases through the end of summer and into the fall.
We can get a tornado at any point of the year. We have had tornadoes in January!
The most common time of the year is late spring and summer in our part of the country.
What time of day are tornadoes most common?
Looking at the graph above from the Storm Prediction Center you will see that the tornado risk, on average, goes up late afternoon and into the evening.
This is due to the peak heating of the day helping to fuel strong storms. This fuel helps intensify the storm to aid in tornado development. Of course, many other atmospheric parameters must be present as well to get a tornado to form.