-Derechos are NOT simply large thunderstorms. This is a common misconception. -The term Derecho refers to the violent winds themselves. -Thunderstorms part of a derecho are often called bow echoes due to the shape they make on radar.
How are Derechos Formed? Evaporating water cools the air around it. Cool air sinks low to the ground, creating strong winds. The downburst then sucks more dry air in, feeding into a cycle.
Notable Derechos July 15, 1995 July 22, 2003 July 2006 June 29, 2012 (Our subject today!)
The Numbers 13 Hour period, from about 10 A.M. to midnight. 800 miles long, causing wind damage in 11 states. 13 people were killed. Average wind speed about 65 miles per hour, peaking at 91 miles per hour in Fort Wayne, Indiana. 4.25 million without power.
The Derecho in Ohio The derecho hit Ohio particularly hard. Estimated cost of damage: 440 million dollars. Although the storm began near Chicago, it really picked up steam in Ohio. Third most expensive natural disaster in Ohio.
In Summary Derechos are a powerful walls of storms that cover miles of land in high speed winds. Though they aren’t as well-known or common as hurricanes, they are just as dangerous and cause just as much damage. The sheer unprecedented scope of the 2012 derecho, combined with heat wave that followed, make it especially remarkable. You now have another reason to love Ohio weather!