Twisters Touch Down In Virginia On Monday

Storm System Also Responsible For Heavy Rains Throughout Garden State

It was a stormy day in the Mid-Atlantic, and Northeast as a storm system that was much anticipated for several days came through the regions. The result was heavy rains for New Jersey, and even worse weather a bit further south in Virginia. The Commonwealth State, which is more known for being impacted by tropical storms and hurricanes than for tornadoes, got a taste of weather more typical of the Great Plains and Midwest as several twisters rolled through the Southern portion of the state near Norfolk.

The twisters ripped through such towns as Suffolk, which has a population of 80,000 people. The tornado that struck this town had tore a path that was some 25 miles long. Meanwhile, the National Weather Service, indicated two other tornadoes had struck in Brunswick County, which is located some 60 miles to the west of Suffolk, and Colonial Hills, which is located some 60 miles to the Northwest. According to the Weather Channel web site news article on the story, the Brunswick County twister produced winds that were estimated to be between 86 and 110 miles per hour.

The twister that struck Suffolk was described as a “major tornado”, which indicates to GWC that it was at least an EF2, and perhaps an EF3 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale. Officials in Suffolk determined that there were 125 houses, and some 15 businesses and other facilities damaged to the point that they were no longer inhabitable. The Suffolk tornado left some 200 people injured while the twister in Colonial Hills, which is also situated south of the capital city of Richmond, produced some 18 injuries. On Tuesday, the storm system moved into New England, which produced copious amounts of rainfall in Maine and New Hampshire. According to the storm totals produced by TWC, there was 4.30 inches of rain in Brunswick, Maine, Fairfield had 3.60 inches, Portland received 3.25 inches, and Berlin, New Hampshire reported 2.82 inches of rainfall as of Tuesday afternoon.

Returning to the storm toll from Monday, there was a great deal of rain in New Jersey. According to the rain gauge for the Greg’s Weather Center WX station, there was 1.12 inches of rain during the day on Monday (April 28th). After no measurable rainfall in South Plainfield for 13 straight days, there was been at least 0.01 inches of rain for each of the past four days here in Northwestern Middlesex County. Moreover, there has been more rain over these past four days, than there had been for the entire month of April up to this point. So, after appearing to be somewhat of a dry month, the last four days here in New Jersey have brought rainfall for this usually showery and rainy month to be much closer to normal.

Looking at rainfall data across New Jersey and the rest of the New York City Metropolitan area, courtesy of the NWS, you could see that rainfall amounts across the Garden State ranged from a quarter of an inch along the Jersey shore especially in portions of Monmouth and Ocean counties to upwards of 2 inches in extreme Northwestern New Jersey. The doppler radar analysis of the cumulative rainfall agreed with the measurement given by the GWC station for Monday (1.12 inches) since rainfall amounts across a swath of Union, Middlesex, Somerset, and Mercer Counties ranged between 1.0 and 1.5 inches. Meanwhile, portions of Central and Eastern Long Island saw over 2 inches of rain up to 2.5 inches.