The severe weather was all around the Coastal Bend Friday, but so far, Corpus Christi proper seems to have escaped anything too dangerous. But what kinds of elements make up a severe thunderstorm?
A loud rumble of thunder can seem intense, but the loudness of thunder, the brightness of lightning and the amount of rainfall you receive are all part of a general thunderstorm.
Lightning can be highly visual and frightening at times, even knocking the power out if it strikes the right object. It's also a danger to you if you are outdoors. If you can hear thunder, lightning is close enough to pose a hazard to you and you should seek shelter.
Flooding can also pose a serious threat on the roadways. It only takes half a foot of moving water to lift a vehicle. If you do encounter a road that is flooded, follow this motto: Turn around, don't drown.
While flooding and lightning can spell trouble, they do not make a thunderstorm severe. You often hear meteorologists refer to storms as severe, but there is a rigid trio of conditions that classify a thunderstorm as severe.
Any single one or combination of these conditions satisfy a severe classification of a thunderstorm:
- Winds of 58 mph or higher
- Hail of an inch in diameter or greater
- A tornado.
Regardless of what the thunderstorm is producing, it's always safest to follow this saying: When thunder roars, go indoors.