Advertisement

Climatology of tropical cyclone tornadoes in China from 2006 to 2018

  • Lanqiang Bai
  • Zhiyong MengEmail author
  • Kenta Sueki
  • Guixing Chen
  • Ruilin Zhou
Research Paper Special Topic: Weather characteristics and climate anomalies of the TC track, heavy rainfall and tornadoes in 2018
  • 15 Downloads

Abstract

We surveyed the occurrence of tropical cyclone (TC) tornadoes in China from 2006 to 2018. There were 64 cataloged TC tornadoes, with an average of five per year. About one-third of the landfalling TCs in China were tornadic. Consistent with previous studies, TC tornadoes preferentially formed in the afternoon shortly before and within about 36 h after landfall of the TCs. These tornadoes mainly occurred in coastal areas with relatively flat terrains. The maximum number of TC tornadoes occurred in Jiangsu and Guangdong provinces. Most of the TC tornadoes were spawned within 500 km of the TC center. Two notable characteristics were found: (1) TC tornadoes in China mainly occurred in the northeast quadrant (Earth-relative coordinates) rather than the right-front quadrant (TC motion-relative coordinates) of the parent TC circulation; and (2) most tornadoes were produced by TCs with a relatively weak intensity (tropical depressions/storms), in contrast with the United States where most tornadoes are associated with stronger TCs. Further analyses showed that TC tornadoes in China tend to be spawned in an environment with large low-level storm relative helicity and large convective available potential energy taking entrainment effects into account. TC tornadoes were particularly active in 2018, with 24 reported tornadoes accounting for 37.5% of the total surveyed samples. The first recorded tornado outbreak in the modern history of China occurred in the envelope of TC Yagi (2018), in which 11 tornadoes were reported in association with significant midlevel intrusions of dry air and the interaction of Yagi with an approaching midlatitude midlevel trough.

Keywords

Tornadoes Tropical cyclones Historical statistics China 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Notes

Acknowledgements

We thank the numerous people who shared their valuable tornado information (online or privately), including photographs and videos of tornadoes. Special thanks are given to Jiayi Chen from Peking University for providing the tornado database (Chen et al., 2018) and to Zhengzhao Johnny Luo from the City University of New York for helpful comments. We also acknowledge Lijun Yan, Zhaoming Li and Kanglong Cai from the Foshan Tornado Research Center for sharing some of the information on tornadoes. Additional gratitude is extended to the three anonymous reviewers who have greatly aided in the improvement of this work. This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41875051, 41425018 & 41775094), the China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (Grant No. 2019M653146) and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science KAKENHI (Grant No. JP18H01277).

References

  1. American Meteorological Society. 2018. Tornado outbreak. Glossary of Meteorology. Available online at http://glossary.ametsoc.org/wiki/Tornado_outbreak
  2. Bai L Q, Meng Z Y, Huang L, Yan L J, Li Z H, Mai X H, Huang Y P, Yao D, Wang X. 2017. An integrated damage, visual, and radar analysis of the 2015 Foshan, Guangdong, EF3 tornado in China produced by the landfalling Typhoon Mujigae (2015). Bull Amer Meteorol Soc, 98: 2619–2640CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barbour G B. 1924. Waterspout and tornado within a typhoon area. Mon Weather Rev, 52: 106–107CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Chen J Y, Cai X H, Wang H Y, Kang L, Zhang H S, Song Y, Zhu H, Zheng W, Li F J. 2018. Tornado climatology of China. Int J Climatol, 38: 2478–2489CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Chen L S, Ding Y H. 1979. An Introduction to the Western Pacific Typhoon (in Chinese). Beijing: Science Press. 491Google Scholar
  6. Curtis L. 2004. Midlevel dry intrusions as a factor in tornado outbreaks associated with landfalling tropical cyclones from the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico. Weather Forecast, 19: 411–427CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Davies-Jones R. 1984. Streamwise vorticity: The origin of updraft rotation in supercell storms. J Atmos Sci, 41: 2991–3006CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Eastin M D, Link M C. 2009. Miniature supercells in an offshore outer rainband of Hurricane Ivan (2004). Mon Weather Rev, 137: 2081–2104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Edwards R. 2012. Tropical cyclone tornadoes: A review of knowledge in research and prediction. Electronic J Severe Storms Meteorol, 7: 1–61Google Scholar
  10. Fan W J, Yu X D. 2015. Characteristics of spatial-temporal distribution of tornadoes in China (in Chinese). Meteorol Mon, 41: 793–805Google Scholar
  11. Galway J G. 1977. Some climatological aspects of tornado outbreaks. Mon Weather Rev, 105: 477–484CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Gao S, Wang D L, Hong H X, Wu N G, Li T. 2018. Evaluation of warm-core structure in reanalysis and satellite data sets using HS3 dropsonde observations: A case study of Hurricane Edouard (2014). J Geophys Res-Atmos, 123: 6713–6731CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Gentry R C. 1983. Genesis of tornadoes associated with hurricanes. Mon Weather Rev, 111: 1793–1805CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Hill E L, Malkin W, Schulz Jr W A. 1966. Tornadoes associated with cyclones of tropical origin-practical features. J Appl Meteorol, 5: 745–763CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Huang X X, Yan L J, Wang S F, Cheng Z Q. 2014. Analysis of the characteristics of tornados in Foshan city and their circulation background (in Chinese). Guangdong Meteorol, 36: 20–24Google Scholar
  16. Knupp K R, Murphy TA, Coleman TA, Wade R A, Mullins S A, Schultz C J, Schultz E V, Carey L, Sherrer A, McCaul Jr. E W, Carcione B, Latimer S, Kula A, Laws K, Marsh P T, Klockow K. 2014. Meteorological overview of the devastating 27 April 2011 tornado outbreak. Bull Amer Meteorol Soc, 95: 1041–1062CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Lyons S W. 2004. U.S. Tropical cyclone landfall variability: 1950–2002. Weather Forecast, 19: 473–480CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Ma Z Z, Maddy E S, Zhang B L, Zhu T, Boukabara S A. 2017. Impact Assessment of Himawari-8 AHI Data Assimilation in NCEP GDAS/GFS with GSI. J Atmos Ocean Technol, 34: 797–815CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. McCaul Jr E W. 1987. Observations of the Hurricane “Danny” tornado outbreak of 16 August 1985. Mon Weather Rev, 115: 1206–1223CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. McCaul Jr E W. 1991. Buoyancy and shear characteristics of hurricane-tornado environments. Mon Weather Rev, 119: 1954–1978CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Meng Z Y, Yan D C, Zhang Y J. 2013. General features of squall lines in East China. Mon Weather Rev, 141: 1629–1647CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Meng Z Y, Bai L Q, Zhang M R, Wu Z F, Li Z H, Pu M J, Zheng Y G, Wang X H, Yao D, Xue M, Zhao K, Li Z M, Peng S Q, Li L Y. 2018. The deadliest tornado (EF4) in the past 40 years in China. Weather Forecast, 33: 693–713CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Mitsuta Y. 1983. Studies on wind disasters caused by tatsumaki (tornadoes and waterspouts) and severe local storms in Japan (in Japanese with English abstract). Final Report of the Special Research Project for Natural Disaster Sponsored by the Ministry of Education. 124Google Scholar
  24. Niino H, Fujitani T, Watanabe N. 1997. A statistical study of tornadoes and waterspouts in Japan from 1961 to 1993. J Clim, 10: 1730–1752CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Novlan D J, Gray W M. 1974. Hurricane-spawned tornadoes. Mon Weather Rev, 102: 476–488CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Rasmussen E N. 2003. Refined supercell and tornado forecast parameters. Weather Forecast, 18: 530–535CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Romps D M, Kuang Z. 2010. Do undiluted convective plumes exist in the upper tropical troposphere? J Atmos Sci, 67: 468–484CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Schultz L A, Cecil D J. 2009. Tropical cyclone tornadoes, 1950–2007. Mon Weather Rev, 137: 3471–3484CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Shen S. 1990. A preliminary analysis of the general characteristics and formation conditions of tornadoes ahead of typhoons. Meteorol Mon, 16: 11–16Google Scholar
  30. Spratt S M, Sharp D W, Welsh P, Sandrik A, Alsheimer F, Paxton C. 1997. A WSR-88D assessment of tropical cyclone outer rainband tornadoes. Weather Forecast, 12: 479–501CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Sueki K, Niino H. 2016. Toward better assessment of tornado potential in typhoons: Significance of considering entrainment effects for CAPE. Geophys Res Lett, 43: 12597–12604CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Suzuki O, Niino H, Ohno H, Nirasawa H. 2000. Tornado-producing mini supercells associated with Typhoon 9019. Mon Weather Rev, 128: 1868–1882CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Thompson R L, Edwards R, Hart J A, Elmore K L, Markowski P M. 2003. Close proximity soundings within supercell environments obtained from the Rapid Update Cycle. Weather Forecast, 18: 1243–1261CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Thompson R L, Mead C M, Edwards R. 2007. Effective storm-relative helicity and bulk shear in supercell thunderstorm environments. Weather Forecast, 22: 102–115CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Thompson R L, Smith B T, Grams J S, Dean A R, Broyles C. 2012. Convective modes for significant severe thunderstorms in the contiguous United States. Part II: Supercell and QLCS tornado environments. Weather Forecast, 27: 1136–1154CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Tochimoto E, Sueki K, Niino H. 2019. Entraining CAPE for better assessment of tornado outbreak potential in the warm sector of extratropical cyclones. Mon Weather Rev, 147: 913–930CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Verbout S M, Schultz D M, Leslie L M, Brooks H E, Karoly D J, Elmore K L. 2007. Tornado outbreaks associated with landfalling hurricanes in the North Atlantic Basin: 1954–2004. Meteorol Atmos Phys, 97: 255–271CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Vescio M D, Weiss S J, Ostby F P. 1996. Tornadoes associated with Tropical Storm Beryl. Miami: 21st Conf on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology. 469–471Google Scholar
  39. Weiss S J. 1987. Some climatological aspects of forecasting tornadoes associated with tropical cyclones. Miami: 17th Conf on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteor. 160–163Google Scholar
  40. Yao D, Liang X D, Meng Q, Li J, Wu C, Xie Z S, Chen D D, Guo J P. 2019. Importance of identifying tropical cyclone tornadoes in typhoon warning and defense systems. Chin Sci Bull, 64: 143–145Google Scholar
  41. Ying M, Zhang W, Yu H, Lu X Q, Feng J X, Fan Y X, Zhu Y T, Chen D Q. 2014. An overview of the China Meteorological Administration tropical cyclone database. J Atmos Ocean Technol, 31: 287–301CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Zhao K, Wang M J, Xue M, Fu P L, Yang Z L, Chen X M, Zhang Y, Lee W C, Zhang F Q, Lin Q, Li Z H. 2017. Doppler radar analysis of a tornadic miniature supercell during the landfall of Typhoon Mujigae (2015) in South China. Bull Amer Meteorol Soc, 98: 1821–1831CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Zheng Y, Yu X D, Ren F M, Cai Q B. 2017. Analysis on a severe tornado process in Hainan triggered by supercell (in Chinese). Meteorol Mon, 43: 675–685Google Scholar
  44. Zheng Y Y, Zhang B, Wang X H, Sun K Y, Mu R Q, Xia W M. 2015. Analysis of typhoon-tornado weather background and radar echo structure (in Chinese). Meteorol Mon, 41: 942–952Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Science China Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lanqiang Bai
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Zhiyong Meng
    • 2
    Email author
  • Kenta Sueki
    • 4
  • Guixing Chen
    • 1
    • 3
  • Ruilin Zhou
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Atmospheric Sciences, and Guangdong Province Key Laboratory for Climate Change and Natural Disaster StudiesSun Yat-sen UniversityGuangzhouChina
  2. 2.Laboratory for Climate and Ocean-Atmosphere Studies, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, School of PhysicsPeking UniversityBeijingChina
  3. 3.Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai)ZhuhaiChina
  4. 4.RIKEN Center for Computational ScienceKobeJapan

Personalised recommendations