Around 1:45 AM today, a huge gas explosion destroyed a large building in the Greenwood neighborhood of north Seattle (see picture, courtesy of KOMO TV)
Folks throughout north Seattle and Shoreline was awakened from their sleep, some checking their homes for damage. Heavy damage hit buildings near the explosion, including broken windows.
Large explosions produce very load sounds, which in reality are powerful pressures waves in the atmosphere. Sound, as you learned in middle school, is associated with propagating pressure waves, with alternating areas of compression and rarefaction (see image). A large explosion can produce an intense, rapidly increase zone of pressure called a shock wave that propagates away from the explosion.
You want a big pressure signal? A very deep low center is now moving up our coast and will cross Vancouver Is. tomorrow morning.
At 10 PM this evening the WRF model shows a very deep low (972 hPa) off northern Oregon with a HUGE pressure gradient on he south and west sides.
As of 9 PM, winds are gusting to 90 mph along exposed hills along the WA and southwestern WA coast, with 104 mph gusts at Naselle Ridge near Astoria, with a 97 mph nearby (see map of max gusts over the past 24 hr)
And yes, lots of rain tonight.
Announcement: Public Talk: Weather Forecasting: From Superstition to Supercomputers
I will be giving a talk on March 16th at 7:30 PM in Kane Hall on the UW campus on the history, science, and technology of weather forecasting as a fundraiser for KPLU. I will give you an insider's view of the amazing story of of weather forecasting's evolution from folk wisdom to a quantitative science using supercomputers. General admission tickets are $25.00, with higher priced reserved seating and VIP tickets (including dinner) available. If you are interested in purchasing tickets, you can sign up here