Wednesday June 26, 2019
Isolated Severe T'Storm Event- Mechanicville 95 mph Microburst

Scattered thunderstorms developed late in the afternoon on Wednesday June 26 in a modestly unstable environment (CAPE up to 1000j/kg) characterized by subtly cooling temperatures aloft due to the approach of a weak upper air short wave trough, coupled with low 60 degree surface dewpoints and mid 80 degree surface temperatures. The trigger was a wind shift line, or pre-frontal surface low pressure trough, which tracked in advance of a weak dewpoint boundary that was approaching western New York late in the day. Modest mid level speed shear of up to 35 knots was present to allow for some storm organization into a mainly multi-cell type mode.

There were two clusters of thunderstorms, one which tracked across Herkimer, Hamilton, northern Fulton, Warren, and northern Saratoga counties through 6:30pm, a second which moved across southern Otsego, Delaware, southern Greene, Ulster, and Dutchess counties from 4pm through 8pm. These southern storms did become locally severe in Delaware and Ulster counties producing pockets of wind damage.

Mechanicville Microburst Event

Albany National Weather Service Storm Report

The storm that smacked Mechanicville, downing numerous trees and power lines in the city, some onto homes, developed extremely quickly with the below radar images illustrating storm development from nothing to a severe thunderstorm in about 15-20 minutes as it formed along the pre-frontal trough south of the strong thunderstorm that was going through Saratoga Springs.

Albany Doppler radar image - 6:32pm - Wednesday June 26, 2019: The image shows a strong thunderstorm moving into Wilton and Saratoga Springs with just a few isolated light showers in southern Saratoga, eastern Schenectady and northern Albany counties along a wind shift line. This radar image was approximately a half an hour before the damaging microburst in Mechanicville.

Albany Doppler radar image (ENX) at approximately 6:30pm June 26, 2019

Albany Doppler radar image - 6:59pm - Wednesday June 26, 2019: Explosive and rapid thunderstorm development occurred south of the Saratoga Springs storm over Malta, Halfmoon to Latham. Frequent cloud to ground lightning was occurring with the newly formed storm moving east into Mechanicville where only minutes after this radar image would produce the very localized 95 mph microburst. It was remarkable how quickly the development occurred with little time between storm formation and it becoming severe.

Albany Doppler radar image (ENX) at approximately 7pm June 26, 2019 

The severe multicell thunderstorm continued to track east through southern Washington, northern Rensselaer, Bennington and northern Berkshire County where it produced some additional pocket of wind damage in Schaghticoke, Pittstown, and Bennington, VT as well as 1.50" to a radar estimate of 2.00" of rain across northern Berkshire County before it moved out of the region around 8:45pm. The radar images below illustrate the storm's location at approximately 7:30pm and 8:15pm. (The lightning symbols were removed on these images.)

Albany Doppler radar image - 7:30pm - Wednesday June 26, 2019: Severe multicell thunderstorm over southern Washington and northern Rensselaer County with a hail core at this time located near Brunswick.

Albany Doppler 6 image (ENX) at approximately 7:30pm, June 26, 2019 

Albany Doppler radar image - 8:15pm - Wednesday June 26, 2019: Severe multicell thunderstorm over SW Bennington County VT and northern Berkshire County, MA

Albany Doppler 6 image (ENX) at approximately 8:15pm, June 26, 2019 

Photograph Credit: John Valli via Facebook: A sample of some of the tree damage in Mechanicville from the storm, June 26, 2019

Tree damage in Mechanicville, NY June 26, 2019 

NWS Storm Reports for Wednesday June 26, 2019. Note, these reports are used to verify the NWS warnings which were issued for this event and therefore do not necessarily represent an accounting for all of the wind damage and hail which may have occurred.

Town County Severe Weather Report Time
Cranberry Creek Fulton Numerous trees blown down in the same direction, damage path approximately 0.4 miles lon 5:39pm
Wawarsing Ulster Wind Damage: Trees and wires blown down 6:55pm
Mechanicville Saratoga 95 mph Microburst: Many trees and power lines down, some on vehicles and homes 7:05 to 7:08pm
Halfmoon Saratoga Wind Damage: Trees and power lines down, transformer exploded 7:05pm
Schaghticoke Rensselaer Wind Damage: Large tree blown down across Sliter Road 7:14pm
Schaghticoke Rensselaer Wind Damage: Numerous trees blown down 7:15pm
Kingston Ulster Wind Damage: Trees and wires blown down 7:15pm
Rosendale Village Ulster Wind Damage: Tree damage with large limbs broken 7:16pm
Pittstown Rensselaer Wind Damage: Trees and wires blown down 7:24pm
Milton Saratoga Wind Damage: Trees and wires blown down 7:25pm
Brunswick Rensselaer Wind Damage: All lanes on Route 2 East and West closed between Brunswick Sportsman Club Rd. and Palitsch Rd. closed due to downed trees 7:38pm
Kent Dutchess Wind Damage: Downed tree block lanes on HWY 9 southbound 7:38pm
Marlboro Ulster Wind Damage: Downed trees closed HWY 9 southbound 7:52pm
Bennington, VT Bennington Wind Damage: Route 7 closed in Bennington due to a downed tree 8:00pm