A mediterranean nocturnal heavy rainfall and tornadic event. Part I: overview, damage survey and radar analysis
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This study presents an analysis of a severe weather case that took place during the early morning of the 2nd of November 2008, when intense convective activity associated with a rapidly evolving low pressure system affected the southern coast of Catalonia (NE Spain). The synoptic framework was dominated by an upper level trough and an associated cold front extending from Gibraltar along the Mediterranean coast of the Iberian Peninsula to SE France, which moved north-eastward. South easterly winds in the north of the Balearic Islands and the coast of Catalonia favoured high values of 0-3 km storm relative helicity which combined with moderate MLCAPE values and high shear favoured the conditions for organized convection. A number of multicell storms and others exhibiting supercell features, as indicated by Doppler radar observations, clustered later in a mesoscale convective system, and moved north-eastwards across Catalonia. They produced ground-level strong damaging wind gusts, an F2 tornado, hail and heavy rainfall. Total lightning activity (intra-cloud and cloud to ground flashes) was also relevant, exhibiting several classical features such as a sudden increased rate before ground level severe damage, as discussed in a companion study. Remarkable surface observations of this event include 24 h accumulations exceeding 100 mm in four different observatories and 30 minute rainfall amounts up to 40 mm which caused local flash floods. As the convective system evolved northward later that day it also affected SE France causing large hail, ground level damaging wind gusts and heavy rainfall.
CitationBech, J. [et al.]. A mediterranean nocturnal heavy rainfall and tornadic event. Part I: overview, damage survey and radar analysis. "Atmospheric research", 03 Gener 2011, p. 1-11.