Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Denver/Boulder, CO

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Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Denver/Boulder CO
259 AM MDT THU JUN 15 2017

...Today in metro Denver weather history...

12-17 In 2000...two large wildfires developed in the Front Range
        foothills as careless campers and very dry conditions
        proved to be a dangerous combination.  Strong winds
        gusting in excess of 60 mph on the 13th fanned the flames...
        spreading both wildfires out of control.  Winds gusted to
        78 mph atop Niwot Ridge near the Continental Divide west
        of Boulder.  The Hi Meadows Wildfire...about 35 miles
        southwest of Denver...consumed nearly 11 thousand acres and
        80 structures...mostly high priced homes.  The Bobcat
        Wildfire...located about 12 miles southwest of Fort Collins...
        consumed nearly 11 thousand acres and 22 structures.  Late
        on the 16th...a strong cold front moved south over the Great
        Plains into northeastern Colorado.  Low level upslope
        conditions developed in the wake of the front...producing
        2 to 4 inches of snowfall overnight at elevations above
        8 thousand feet.  Firefighters were able to contain both
        fires shortly thereafter.
15    In 1907...south winds were sustained to 40 mph.  The winds
        were strong all day.
      In 1908...the hail storm was unusually severe.  Heavy clouds
        moved over the city from the north and northwest...and by
        late morning the weather had become very threatening.
        Heavy rain with intermittent hail from pea to 3/4 inch
        in diameter fell near noon.  The fall of rain and hail
        totaled 0.68 inch of precipitation with 0.35 inch in just
        5 minutes.  The temperature fell from 71 degrees to 51
        degrees during the storm.  The hail did considerable
        damage to trees...gardens...and hot houses.  On sidewalks
        with northern exposures...the hail ranged in depth from
        2 to 6 inches.  West winds were sustained to 29 mph during
        the storm.
      In 1956...strong southeast winds raked metro Denver all day.
        Sustained winds at 44 mph with gusts as high as 61 mph were
        recorded at Stapleton Airport where blowing dust briefly
        reduced the visibility to 2 miles.
      In 1984...golf ball size hail pelted southern and central
        Aurora.  Rainfall of 2.06 inches over central Aurora in
        just over an hour produced local street flooding.
      In 1987...golf ball size hail fell in the southern part of
        Lakewood.
      In 1988...several tornadoes developed across metro Denver.
        One tornado touched down just northeast of the Rocky
        Mountain Arsenal.  The twister moved very slowly and did no
        damage...except to demolish a small electrical substation...
        even though it was on the ground for nearly 30 minutes.
        Later...another tornado was sighted east of Brighton about
        2 miles north of Barr Lake.  An F2 tornado cut a swath
        through northeast Denver.  The main path went through a
        thickly wooded area for about 6 blocks and uprooted about
        500 city owned trees...many of them large elms 75 to 100
        years old.  Hundreds of privately owned trees were also
        sucked from the ground by the slow moving twister...which was
        filmed by a news team in a helicopter as it uprooted trees.
        The replacement cost to the city owned trees was estimated
        at 1.5 million dollars.  The twister did little damage to
        buildings.  Some homes suffered roof and chimney damage...a
        gas main was ruptured...and some cars were damaged by
        falling trees.  The uprooted trees also caused curb and
        sidewalk damage and cut some electrical wires.  The funnel
        cloud passed close to Stapleton International Airport.
        Aircraft operations were shut down...and the tower was
        evacuated.  The tornado was on the ground for almost 25
        minutes.  An F3 tornado cut an erratic path through south
        Denver for about 25 minutes...causing extensive damage in
        at least 3 areas.  The twister damaged about 85 buildings...
        20 severely; the total loss was estimated at 5 to 10
        million dollars.  Many cars were severely damaged; at
        least 15 vehicles were overturned.  One trailer was lifted
        onto the top of a building that had just been unroofed;
        numerous antique cars inside the building were damaged.
        A Ford Bronco was blown over a church...and landed 100 yards
        away.  A metal storage shed was deposited far above the
        ground in some power lines.  The tornado uprooted many
        trees on a golf course.  No one was seriously hurt...although
        seven people suffered minor injuries from flying debris.
        A golfer was thrown 40 feet...but was not hurt;  a man
        clinging to a telephone pole was unscathed...but lost both
        shoes...a sock...and buttons off his shirt.  A woman holding
        a baby was sucked through a broken convenience store window...
        but was unhurt.  A dog...tethered to the ground by its leash...
        was suspended in the air by the twister.  Uprooted trees
        crushed cars and damaged curbs and sidewalks.  People in
        downtown Denver could see three tornadoes occurring
        simultaneously.  Hail as large as 1 3/8 inches in diameter
        fell in extreme southeast Aurora.
      In 1997...a tornado touched down briefly at the Colorado
        National Speedway near Dacono north of Denver.  The
        tornado ripped through the south grandstand causing at
        least 50 thousand dollars in damage to a shed...kiosk...
        bleachers...and several concession stands.
      In 2004...a tornado touched down briefly near Castle Rock
        and blew the roof off a machine shop.  A tornado near
        Elizabeth destroyed a barn and caused roof damage to a
        home.  Two other barns on nearby properties were damaged
        extensively.  The twister also caused widespread tree
        damage in the area.  A tornado also touched down near
        Bennett and Strasburg...but did no damage.
      In 2009...thunderstorm winds knocked a tree on to two
        vehicles in Boulder.  One of the drivers was injured
        when the tree smashed into the windshield of her car.
      In 2012...a severe thunderstorm produced hail from quarter to
        half dollar size near Littleton and Highlands Ranch.  A
        weak short lived tornado (EF0) also touched down near
        Bennett.
15-16 In 1963...heavy rain and hail ravaged metro Denver.  In
        southeast Denver...heavy rain flooded homes and streets.
        Hail to a depth of 4 inches on the ground stripped trees
        and plants and drifted to depths of 3 to 4 feet in some
        areas.  Flood waters on the Valley Highway were 19 feet
        deep in places...trapping many cars.  Many creeks were
        running over their banks.  On the 15th...the main
        thunderstorm cell passed over south Denver...dumping as
        much as 4 inches of rain in 90 minutes.  Precipitation
        at Stapleton Airport totaled 0.91 inch on the 15th and
        1.31 inches on the 16th.  A funnel cloud was sighted
        briefly 4 miles to the south-southeast of Stapleton
        Airport on the 15th.  Damage from hail and flooding
        amounted to near a million dollars.

$$



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