Severe thunderstorms bring destructive hail to northeast Denver, Boulder, and Broomfield, Colorado

radar image denver co may 31 2024

Large hail battered northeast Denver late Thursday night, May 30, 2024, as severe thunderstorms produced intense light shows and hail up to baseball-sized. The National Weather Service issued warnings for several areas, including Boulder, Broomfield, and Denver International Airport.

Northeast Denver experienced a severe hailstorm late Thursday night, bringing large, destructive hail and intense thunderstorms.

The National Weather Service (NWS) began issuing severe thunderstorm warnings for the Denver metro area at 20:45 LT (02:45 UTC, May 30), initially targeting Boulder, Broomfield, and Lafayette. As the storm moved south-southeast, warnings expanded to include Thornton, Commerce City, and Broomfield, with residents alerted to the potential for winds up to 80 km/h (50 mph) and hail the size of quarters (2.54 cm or 1 inch).

The storm intensified after 21:30 LT, producing golf ball-sized hail (4.45 cm or 1.75 inches) and later, tennis (6.7 cm or 2.6 inches) and baseball-sized hail (7.62 cm or 3 inches) in parts of the northeastern Denver metro area, including Denver International Airport.

By 22:15 LT (04:15 UTC), the NWS in Boulder issued a warning for a “Destructive hail storm for Green Valley Ranch and northeast Denver “Radar indicated up to baseball size hail falling with this storm. This storm is currently tracking across Pena Blvd and moving slowly east-southeast.”

Following this, a severe thunderstorm warning was issued for Denver, Aurora, and Westminster until 23:15, as forecasters warned of potential golf ball-sized hail and winds reaching 80 km/h (50 mph) as the storm continued its slow movement through the area. A severe thunderstorm warning remains in effect for northeastern Douglas County, western Arapahoe County, and south-central Denver County until midnight, according to the NWS.

The intense storms led to the closure of the westbound lanes of E. 96th Ave. and Havana St. in Commerce City due to flooding, according to the city’s police department. Authorities advised drivers not to attempt to navigate through the flooded area.

The true extent of the destruction will become clear as daylight reveals the aftermath of the storm.

Residents are likely to discover damage to roofs, siding, windows, and vehicles caused by the large hail.

More severe storms possible today and tomorrow

Another round of severe weather is possible late this afternoon and evening, according to NWS office in Boulder. “

The main threat is east of Greeley, Denver, and Castle Rock from 16:00 to 22:00 LT. Large hail and damaging winds are the main threats, with heavy rain and a tornado possible.”

More severe storms are likely on Saturday, June 1.

Severe weather and rainfall in Central U.S. this weekend

Southern stream shortwave energy is set to initiate severe thunderstorms and excessive rainfall across parts of the Central U.S. this weekend, NWS forecaster Kebede noted at 07:44 UTC today.

On Friday, a complex of thunderstorms is expected to move from the Central and Southern High Plains across northern and eastern Texas, Kebede said.

This will be followed by another round of storms developing and moving into parts of Arkansas and southern Missouri this evening.

The Storm Prediction Center has issued a Slight Risk (level 2 out of 5) of Severe Thunderstorms for these events, with wind damage and isolated tornadoes being the primary hazards.

Large hail and severe wind gusts are also possible over the Central High Plains. Additionally, there is a Slight Risk (at least 15%) of Excessive Rainfall leading to flash flooding over portions of the Middle and Lower Mississippi Valley and eastern Oklahoma and Texas. The exact locations where storms will initiate and be most impactful remain uncertain.

On Saturday, June 1, the focus for showers and thunderstorms will shift to the Lower Mississippi and Ohio Valleys. Another complex of storms may move into the central Gulf Coast beginning in the morning.

These storms could be efficient rain producers, warranting another Slight Risk of Excessive Rainfall over much of Mississippi and Alabama.

The Storm Prediction Center has also issued a Slight Risk of Severe Thunderstorms along the Central to Southern High Plains, where supercells capable of producing severe wind, hail, and a few brief tornadoes could impact the region in the afternoon.

Meanwhile, heat risk continues to be a concern over south Texas through the weekend. Convection over the Central U.S. will lead to below-average high temperatures today. Troughing in the West will support above-average temperatures across much of the region this weekend. A deep upper-level low will arrive over the Pacific Northwest on Sunday, bringing the potential for heavy rainfall.


1 Large, destructive hail batters northeast Denver late Thursday night – Denver7 – May 31, 2024

2 Short Range Forecast Discussion – NWS WPC – Issued at 03:44 EDT (07:44 UTC) on May 31, 2024


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