Over the past week or so, hailstorms have beaten down parts of the U.S. and other parts of the world. Maybe it’s social media and the ubiquitous availability of weather photos, but I can’t ever recall such an onslaught of hailstorms.
Let’s take a tour.
1) Sunday, May 18, Sao Paulo, Brazil
bizarro a quantidade de granizo que caiu na aclimação aqui em SP pic.twitter.com/Am1BFs0ubJ— João Pedro C. Motta (@OficialJoao) May 18, 2014
2) Tuesday, May 20, near Chicago (Aurora, Illinois)
3) Wednesday, May 21, near Denver
4. Thursday, May 22: Reading, Pennsylvania
Berkshire Mall in Reading shut down after Hailstorm shatters roof windows scattering glass @ golf ball size Hail. pic.twitter.com/GJF0aIGdjg— Dann Cuellar (@DannCuellar) May 23, 2014
5. Friday, May 23: Myrtle Beach and Spartanburg, South Carolina
6. Sunday, May 25, 2014: Vilafranca, Spain
7. Monday, May 26, 2014: San Angelo, Texas
Holy hail in San Angelo TX!’ https://t.co/sGLxauGJAr— Ian Livingston (@islivingston) May 27, 2014
Because hail events are so highly localized and we don’t have long-term records, there’s no way to know if the past week’s hail episodes were unusual. May is certainly the time of year to expect hail – as temperatures at the surface rise quickly due to ever-increasing solar energy while cold air – necessary for making hail – remains at high altitudes.