Fatal tornado in Japan

November 7th, 2006 |

MTSAT visible images (QuickTime animation)
Japan’s deadliest tornado on record struck the town of Saroma (near the northern coast of the island of Hokkaido) around 04:00 UTC (1 PM local time) on 07 November 2006 (CNN news report). QuickTime animations of MTSAT-1R visible channel (above) and 10.7µm IR channel images (below) did not show any typical severe convection signatures such as an “enhanced-v” signature, but these images were only available at 30 minute intervals. Widespread convection was developing over that region in advance of an approaching mid-latitude cyclone that was rapidly intensifying — water vapor channel imagery (QuickTime animation) indicated that the upper level flow was strongly divergent over Hokkaido island, creating an environment favorable to supporting upward vertical motions and subsequent convective development.
MTSAT IR images (QuickTime animation)