The magnificent microburst

Posted: Updated:
This photo was taken on July 18, 2016. (Source: Jerry Ferguson) This photo was taken on July 18, 2016. (Source: Jerry Ferguson)
Ferguson says they were trying to outrun a dust storm in Chandler and they looked out the window and saw what looked like an atomic bomb went off over Phoenix. (Source: Jerry Ferguson) Ferguson says they were trying to outrun a dust storm in Chandler and they looked out the window and saw what looked like an atomic bomb went off over Phoenix. (Source: Jerry Ferguson)
Ferguson snapped the picture while flying around the Valley in the Penguin Air and Plumbing News Chopper. (Source: Bruce Haffner) Ferguson snapped the picture while flying around the Valley in the Penguin Air and Plumbing News Chopper. (Source: Bruce Haffner)
(3TV/CBS 5) -

Every summer we see one or two storms that leave us with a reminder just how powerful the monsoon can be. 

Last season, we got hit by this magnificent microburst that ranks up there with a storm that won’t soon be forgotten. 

Jerry Ferguson snapped this picture while flying around the Valley in the Penguin Air and Plumbing News Chopper.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Monsoon 2017]

Ferguson says they were trying to outrun a dust storm in Chandler and they looked out the window and saw what looked like an atomic bomb went off over Phoenix. He pulled out his camera and the picture went worldwide. At last check, he says it hit tens of thousands of websites and even the National Geographic.

A microburst is a strong down-draft that can cause a lot of damage. The winds can be strong enough where they can cause damage to buildings and even take down full grown trees. 

Ferguson is from the Valley and knows just how amazing the monsoon can be. His job in the helicopter is to get the video for the station and at times he will grab his camera and start shooting. 

“The best part of my job is getting to show off Arizona. It’s an awesome state," said Ferguson. "We have some of the coolest weather and mountains and it’s great to show them off.

Microbursts, dust storms and everything unpredictable, our chopper crew is often the first and best way to capture it all. 

3TV and CBS 5 meteorologists on Twitter

@AshleeDeMartino | @PaulHortonCBS5 | @royalnorman | @KimQuintero | @SchwartzTV | @aprilwarnecke 

[azfamily.com Weather Tools: Rain Totals | Interactive Radar | Blog: Weather Discussion | Alerts/Warnings | 360 Camera Network]

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


  • Arizona's Family Weather BlogMore>>

  • The 5 best things about the Arizona monsoon

    The 5 best things about the Arizona monsoon

    Thursday, June 14 2018 4:10 PM EDT2018-06-14 20:10:51 GMT
    (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)(Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
    (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)(Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

    Five Best Things About the Monsoon  It's that time of the year again! The Arizona Monsoon starts Friday and boy are we excited. Here are the top five best things about the monsoon in Arizona.  

    More >

    Five Best Things About the Monsoon  It's that time of the year again! The Arizona Monsoon starts Friday and boy are we excited. Here are the top five best things about the monsoon in Arizona.  

    More >
  • Get excited! Monsoon hints rumbling to our south

    Get excited! Monsoon hints rumbling to our south

    Wednesday, June 6 2018 5:17 PM EDT2018-06-06 21:17:38 GMT
    (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)(Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
    (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)(Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

    This week, storms started to fire over the Sierra Madre, the mountain range on the western side of the Mexican plateau. 

    More >

    This week, storms started to fire over the Sierra Madre, the mountain range on the western side of the Mexican plateau. 

    More >
  • Heat Warnings: What you need to know

    Heat Warnings: What you need to know

    Tuesday, June 5 2018 7:24 PM EDT2018-06-05 23:24:25 GMT

    Arizona's notorious summer heat has arrived. We hit 110 degrees for the first time this year earlier this week, and more toasty temps are in the forecast.

    More >

    Arizona's notorious summer heat has arrived. We hit 110 degrees for the first time this year earlier this week, and more toasty temps are in the forecast.  

    More >