E-T Staff Report

It has been busy for North Texas weather watchers the first half of 2007, with a record number of severe weather warnings issued across the region.

Gary Woodall, meteorologist with the National weather Service, recently compiled a list of statistics detailing just how severe the weather was from Jan. through July.

“The majority of the increase (in severe weather warnings) was due to the sheer magnitude and length of the severe weather season this year,” Woodall said. “It’s truly been a remarkable year.”

So far in 2007 there has been 52 tornado warnings, compared with 27 in 2006, and only eight in 2005, during the same time frame. Severe thunderstorm warnings are also on the rise, with 464 already reported, compared to 347 last year, and 341 in 2005.

However, it was the flash flood warnings caused by widespread flooding that showed the most dramatic change in weather patterns, with a whopping 531 warnings already issued, compared to 98 last year and 31 in 2005.

“While we unfortunately also saw an increase in casualties this year, had it not been for everyone’s efforts, the toll would undoubtedly have been much higher,” Woodall said. “Let’s hope things stay quiet for a while.”