Time: 16:50 BST
Macclesfield, Cheshire UK
Type: Explosive Multicell
Documented by: Mark Seltzer
Equipment: Samsung VP-H65 Video Camera
Fujifilm FinePix A310 Digital Camera
Footage Quality: VHS,
This storm was the storm that devastated Manchester with floods and severe
lightning on the 2nd July 2006. It was in its developing stages as I
documented it. This was irritating for me in that everything seemed to be occurring
around Macclesfield within a 10 mile radius, yet
I had no vehicle at my disposal to venture out with. There were cells
developing very quickly in the heat of
the afternoon, sparked off by a dormant convective trough that earlier
produced some large storms across the South West. The cells were just positioned
10 miles west of Macclesfield and the developing towers and thunderheads
were clearly seen (although very washy due to the high humidity in the
atmosphere). Some of the following images are enhanced and the red one has a
filter over the lens.
A first cell passed to
the west and gave out a few odd distant thunders as it progressed towards
Manchester, and then a second cell
approached from the south.
A rapidly developing
updraft front was spotted mid-birth to the West, and had the appearance of a
mesocyclone with shooting scud clouds. This would have been one of the fuel
lines for the intense cells that hit Manchester in succession as it
progressed northwards. The skies went really black in the Manchester
direction as the development continued.
CLICK FOR VIDEO OF UPDRAFT (2.0MB MPEG)
The second cell actually went right overhead but the core
was positioned a few miles to the southeast as it pulsated northeast over
the Pennines. Much of the rain was also dumped to the east of Macclesfield
and only a couple of close C-Gs were dropped nearby. The heavy rain and high
humidity hid the I-C and C-C lightning well if there was any, as I couldn’t
tell where the lightning was occurring at all!
As the storm left the
overhanging thunderhead lingered for at least an hour as cells continued to
develop over the Pennines to the East. Meanwhile Manchester saw
the worst of this storm with persistent torrential rain causing widespread
flooding, and in places there was marble sized hail and lightning powerful
enough to blow someone’s roof apart. The satellite images show clearly how
explosive the development of this storm was, however with these types of
storms the main cores are always very local.
Another key feature was
spotted as the storm left Macclesfield, a strong outflow current was spotted
on the North West horizon with ground-level cloud rolling in the direction
away from the storm (south westerly direction). This lasted for about 10
minutes before vanishing.
As always the sunset
shot is a popular one after a storm, and often the most magnificent.