Archive for Monday, June 29, 1998

LAWRENCE ESCAPES AREA HAIL DOWNFALL

June 29, 1998

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The city of Lawrence once again escaped the brunt of severe weather on Sunday night.

Thunderstorms on Sunday night dropped golfball-sized hail on Big Springs and the Lecompton rest area of the Kansas Turnpike in northwest Douglas County.

But no damage was reported, officials said.

``We got really lucky,'' a dispatcher with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department said.

Nickel-sized hail was reported in Grantville in southwest Jefferson County, but no damage was reported there.

In Lecompton, pea-sized hail fell sporadically for several minutes, Mayor Roy Paslay said.

``It was just in spurts,'' he said. ``We didn't get much.''

Official rainfall amounts weren't immediately available, but radar estimates indicated that 1.5 to 2.5 inches fell in north-central Jefferson County, northeast Shawnee County and northwest Douglas County, said Craig Denny, a meteorologist with WeatherData Inc., a private weather forecasting company.

The Lawrence area had .10 to .50 inches, he said.

Denny said the storms were associated with a front that came through the state earlier in the day Sunday, then moved back north as a warm front.

Northern Douglas and southern Jefferson counties were placed under a severe thunderstorm warning about 7:30 p.m. The warning was allowed to expire at 8:15 p.m. after the storm lost its intensity, said Bob Newton of the Douglas County Emergency Management office.

The area remained under a flash flood watch and tornado watch until 1 a.m. today.

The forecast for today and Tuesday called for very warm and humid conditions with 20 percent chance of thunderstorms. Highs were expected to be in the lower-90s today and near 90 Tuesday.

There was a continued chance of storms Wednesday, with dry conditions forecast for Thursday and Friday. Highs were expected to be 90 to 95.

-- Mike Dekker's phone message number is 832-7187. His e-mail address is mdekker@ljworld.com.

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