After a long period with cool temperatures, mild and unstable air resulted in several strong storms over northwestern Europe. A broad upper-level trough was placed west of Europe, which slowly started an eastward translation, affecting most parts of northwestern and central Europe during the day. Downstream of a low over the UK, a strong SW-erly flow established over western/central Europe,supporting the advection of a warm and humid airmass further towards the NE. A broad area of low to moderate instability release (about 300 J/kg SBCAPE) developed during the day and several storms formed ahead of an approaching trough/secondary cold front.|
First thunderstorm activity was over NW France and these storms porgressed NE over western Belgium into SW Holland. At about 14 LT I decided storms could be worth a chase, so picked my target. Due to open terrain and good road options, SE Flevoland looked to be a great spot. When I arrived several storms were visible at the southern horizon and these were slightly photogenic. Once in a while a CG strike could be seen, but overal lightningactivity was low, as one should expect during the month of March.
When the storm arrived over my location, rain intensity was quite high and loud rumbles of thunder could be heard from time to time, I even saw some small hail. At the backside of the storm small rain-free base could be seen, but overall structure was poor, the storms didn't seem to be organized quite well.
As more storms were over the country, I decided to head east. Storm structure remained uninteresting, I just encountered heavy rain and heard many rumbles of thunder. Not very interesting, but after a cold winter every thunderstorm is most appreciated!
Later I found out that more severe storms affected SE Holland with large hail, strong wind gusts and perhaps a tornado. Even stronger storms over NW Germany were several tornadic supercells caused havoc. Near Hamburg a tornado even killed two people.