Microburst strikes Charleston

High winds strike part of Kanawha County
Storm microburst downs trees in parts of Charleston and South Charleston
Updated: Jun. 3, 2021 at 10:41 PM EDT
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KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - A freak “microburst” ripped through the central part of Central Kanawha County on Thursday evening. Not one to avoid high wind storms in recent years, the greater Charleston area felt the brunt of the sudden winds. The brief high winds felled trees in a violent lash from South Charleston, North Charleston then past Kanawha Two-mile and Airport Village.

The official anemometer at Yeager Airport registered a wind gust at 9:27 of 37knots (41 miles per hour) though pictures of trees down in South Hills would suggest winds likely hit 50 miles per hour.

The etymology (study of word origins) of microburst takes its cue from the prefix micro (as in small scale, 2.5 miles or smaller in width and a few miles in path length) and the root word of burst as in a rush of wind. Storm cloud tops reached 37,000 feet or 7 miles high as these cells passed Kanawha County.

The “microburst” was part of the same line of non-severe cells that rained and rumbled for the start of the Huntington Pullman Square concert season. On its path from Kentucky into West Virginia the parent line of showers and squalls passed with little fanfare.

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