It may or may not be the earliest tornado watch on record, depending on which meteorological group you ask. Either way, it’s happening: Wright County is under a Tornado Watch until 10 p.m. Monday, March 6 as a rare batch of late winter thunderstorms marches from the plains of Nebraska into the Upper Midwest states.
Two huge low pressure systems – one wreaking havoc in northern North Dakota (closing schools in Minot and other communities), the other coming up from the south with loads of moisture creating thunderstorms and high winds – are converging on Minnesota. The result? A lot of moving air.
Though the Tornado Watch runs through this evening, that might be the easy part. Tomorrow’s forecast – 20 degrees cooler than today with a high probability of wind gusts over 50 mph. That’s not good news for trees that were thawed out by 60 degree temperatures the last two days.
Experts are recommending big rigs – semis with trailers – be prepared to hit the rest stops of the world tomorrow, as high wind advisories have been issued for much of Minnesota.
Here’s the watch information, and the high wind info, as well:
TORNADO WATCH 63 IS IN EFFECT UNTIL 1000 PM CST FOR THE FOLLOWING LOCATIONS MNC003-009-013-015-019-025-033-037-039-043-045-047-049-053-055- 059-063-065-067-079-085-091-093-095-097-099-103-109-123-127-129- 131-139-141-143-145-147-153-157-161-163-165-169-171-070400- /O.NEW.KWNS.TO.A.0063.170306T2045Z-170307T0400Z/ MN . MINNESOTA COUNTIES INCLUDED ARE ANOKA BENTON BLUE EARTH BROWN CARVER CHISAGO COTTONWOOD DAKOTA DODGE FARIBAULT FILLMORE FREEBORN GOODHUE HENNEPIN HOUSTON ISANTI JACKSON KANABEC KANDIYOHI LE SUEUR MARTIN MCLEOD MEEKER MILLE LACS MORRISON MOWER NICOLLET OLMSTED RAMSEY REDWOOD RENVILLE RICE SCOTT SHERBURNE SIBLEY STEARNS STEELE TODD WABASHA WASECA WASHINGTON WATONWAN WINONA WRIGHT $$
URGENT - WEATHER MESSAGE National Weather Service Twin Cities/Chanhassen MN 253 PM CST Mon Mar 6 2017 MNZ041>044-048>052-057>063-066>070-076>078-070500- /O.CON.KMPX.WI.Y.0002.170307T0100Z-170307T1500Z/ /O.CON.KMPX.HW.A.0001.170307T1500Z-170308T0300Z/ Douglas-Todd-Morrison-Mille Lacs-Pope-Stearns-Benton-Sherburne- Isanti-Kandiyohi-Meeker-Wright-Hennepin-Anoka-Ramsey-Washington- McLeod-Sibley-Carver-Scott-Dakota-Le Sueur-Rice-Goodhue- Including the cities of Alexandria, Long Prairie, Little Falls, Princeton, Glenwood, St Cloud, Foley, Elk River, Cambridge, Willmar, Litchfield, Monticello, Minneapolis, Blaine, St Paul, Stillwater, Hutchinson, Gaylord, Chaska, Shakopee, Hastings, Le Sueur, Faribault, and Red Wing 253 PM CST Mon Mar 6 2017 ...WIND ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 7 PM THIS EVENING TO 9 AM CST TUESDAY... ...HIGH WIND WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM TUESDAY MORNING THROUGH TUESDAY EVENING... * TIMING/WINDS...A cold front will push through this evening with winds becoming southwest and increasing for a time with gusts of 45 mph possible. After a relative lull in intensity overnight, west winds will increase again Tuesday morning with gusts of 60 mph possible through early evening. * IMPACTS...Tree damage and power outages are possible. Unsecured, lighter objects will be blown around. Driving may be difficult, particularly on north/south roads. PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS... A High Wind Watch means there is the potential for a hazardous high wind event. Sustained winds of at least 40 mph...or gusts of 58 mph or stronger may occur. Continue to monitor the latest forecasts. A Wind Advisory means that wind gusts in excess of 45 mph are expected. Winds this strong can make driving difficult... especially for high profile vehicles. Use extra caution.
A touchdown of a tornado on March 6 would be the earliest recorded in Minnesota, and one of the few before meteorological spring, which is March 21.