FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Wednesday’s winter storm brought something that does not happen around here very often…thundersnow! The sound of thunder is normally reserved for storms, but when it happens in heavy snow, it is an exciting phenomenon. It is something that is rare for our region, but not unheard of.

We had three confirmed reports of thundersnow by the National Weather Service in our area. The first was near the Hartford City wastewater treatment plant in Blackford County around 10:10 AM. Several reports were then confirmed in southeastern Jay County around 10:30 AM and in Van Wert over an hour later around 11:45 AM. Additional unconfirmed reports were from the Decatur area and parts of eastern Allen County.

Storm Tracker did pick up the southeastern Jay County reports and Van Wert reports. Lightning strikes can be seen in the images below.

Thundersnow is a result of instability generated in the atmosphere. Warmer air is lifted quickly into the upper atmosphere where it clashes with colder air. The particles in the atmosphere can then develop a charge. The convective process is similar to that of a summertime thunderstorm.

We’ll be tracking more snow chances in the coming days and weeks. Visit our WANE 15 Forecast Page for the latest information.