Microburst - Downburst Storm Chase June 1, 2004
Hudson Oaks, Texas
* Broadcasted on Good Morning America and The Weather Channel
Chase Account: What an amazing day! I pulled over to a gas station to get my truck under the awning to get some shots out of the rain because I knew there were some strong winds and heavy rain coming, but I did not expect to see winds over 100 mph ! The first wind gust and probably the strongest wind gust caught me off guard and the camera wasn't even out of the bag yet. The winds went from a steady 10-15mph out of the north to a quick 20 second blast of around 110mph. The sound was unreal! I heard allot of loud explosions and glass breaking with an occasional popping noise from transformers exploding and lots of visible power flashes. I watched the dairy queen sign explode into a million pieces and almost hit someone walking nearby! Then, the winds went back down to 30-40mph range. Now the camera is out when another gust came and more explosions were heard, but I didn't film any of that because I was looking for a place to take shelter if the awning over head came crashing down as it was really wobbling back and forth, then the wind let up again. The third strong blast lasted around 30 seconds and that's when the roof was peeled back as you see in the pictures below. Just to my left there was an alley with a huge, heavy duty dumpster rolling end over end towards me. I backed up and just then is when the roof went flying. Once the roof came crashing down the wind stopped and it was all over instantly. The winds died down to around 25mph and all I could hear was crackling from live power lines. This was truly an awesome example of mother nature's wrath !
Power Flash !  
Microburst Stock Video Stills Copyright Mike Theiss
The photographs above may not be reproduced, stored, downloaded, or manipulated
without prior permission from Storm Photographer Mike Theiss