Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS State College, PA

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NOUS41 KCTP 031640

Public Information Statement
National Weather Service State College PA
1240 PM EDT Wed May 3 2017

...Microburst /straight line wind damage/ confirmed in
McKean County...

Location...Custer City in McKean County Pennsylvania
Date...May 1, 2017
Estimated Time...419 PM EDT
Estimated Maximum Wind Speed...90 MPH
Maximum Path Width...50 yards
Path Length...Three quarters of a mile
* Fatalities...0
* Injuries...0

* The information in this statement is preliminary and subject to
change pending final review of the event(s) and publication in
NWS Storm Data.

The National Weather Service in State College PA has confirmed a
Microburst /Straight Line Wind Damage/ near Custer City in McKean
County Pennsylvania on May 1, 2017.

Upon further review of photographic evidence and damage survey
results, the damage that occurred at Penn Hills Country Club has
been reclassified as a Microburst, with evidence of a gustnado
along the northern edge of the damage path.

Microbursts can cause a well defined swath of damage, with some
divergent characteristics in the damage. This is what was
revealed in the NWS survey. Additionally, along the northern edge
of this microburst, interaction with the hillside occurred, caused
a swirling of the wind, which is best described as a gustnado.
While a gustnado will cause damage resembling that of a tornado,
the mechanism that forms the rotation is different than that of a
tornado. For this reason, the pure classification of this as a
tornadic event has been changed to a microburst with attendant

The damage caused by the microburst began along the northwest
side of the Penn Hills Country Club and traveled southeastward for
approximately three-quarters of a mile before dissipating near
the intersection of Route 770 and Langley Drive. Most of the
damage was to trees on the Penn Hills golf course property, some
of which were snapped and others uprooted.

Peak winds, damage path and length have remained unchanged from
the initial assessment.

This information can also be found on our website at

For reference...
A microburst is a convective downdraft with an affected outflow
area of less than 2 1/2 miles wide and peak winds lasting less
than 5 minutes. Microbursts may induce dangerous horizontal and
vertical wind shears...which can adversely affect aircraft
performance and cause property damage.


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