Severe Weather 101: What is a bow echo?


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) —You’ve probably heard your Weather Authority team mention the term “bow echo” before when talking about severe weather. But that doesn’t matter much if you don’t know what a bow echo is.

Put simply, a bow echo is the “signature” you see on radar when the winds associated with a squall line (line of storms) are not uniform. The strongest winds push the middle of the line of storms, which starts to “bow out”. The resulting radar signature looks like an archer’s bow.

If you ever see one of these on radar, the atmosphere means business! Take it as a very strong hint that dangerous weather, and, in particular, dangerously strong winds, are on the way.

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