Severe Weather, West Texas Wildfire Connected - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Severe Weather Across Country, West Texas Wildfire Connected

Kristen Lowe
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - Between tornadoes, flooding, and fires it seems like no one is exempt from mother nature's fury this spring.

From the deadly tornado that hit Joplin, Missouri, to one of the most devastating grassfire seasons right here in the Permian Basin, West Texans want to know what is causing it all.

NewsWest 9's Chief Meteorologist Tom Tefertiller says it's all because of the jet stream.

"The jet stream is a river of winds in the upper levels of the atmosphere, which controls a lot of the weather," Tefertiller said. "It's been well to our North, so we've been under this ridge of high pressure that pushes the jet stream to the North."

The jet stream is hanging out up north, keeping storms from moving into our area. But it's staying close enough to create a lot of wind.

"We're seeing a lot of high winds, but where they do have moisture in the Central and Eastern parts of the United States, that is where they are seeing the severe weather," Tefertiller said.

It's a system of severe weather, that has wreaked havoc on Missouri, triggered flooding across the South, and cost hundreds of American lives.

But at the end of a dark tunnel, there is a bit of light.

"The Jet Stream is finally starting to lift off to the north a little but more, and these storm systems are starting to take an orderly path," said Tefertiller.

Which means the severe weather could finally level off, but the dry conditions here in West Texas are here to stay.

 "It doesn't look like there's going to be anything to bring us out of this drought any time soon," said Tefertiller.

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