TODAY’s Al Roker called Tuesday’s storms in western Mass. ‘a real mess’

Hail is especially common during summertime storms

Western Massachusetts hail video

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Strong summer storms rolled through western Massachusetts Tuesday afternoon,bringing heavy rain, gusty winds, thunder, lightning, and even hail to some communities.

What causes hail?

Hail is a type of frozen precipitation that is especially common during summertime thunderstorms.

Inside thunderstorms, there are fast currents of air that move cold and warm air up and down. Within the updraft, water vapor and rain get pushed up into the cumulonimbus cloud. Within the cloud, the air temperature drops below freezing and as water condenses on dust or other particles, they freeze together. As the hail gets too heavy inside the cloud, it drops and falls to the ground.

Our 22News hail video was featured on the Today Show Wednesday morning. Al Roker spoke with anchors Matt and Hoda about exercising outside and joked, “You didn’t want to be doing that in Chicopee, Massachusetts, yesterday! Torrential downpour, hail coming down, a real mess! People were really diving for cover with all this going on.”

Viewers sent in photos and videos of the hail, which ranged in sizes similar to a pea and even as large as a nickel.