FARMERSBURG, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – In a previous digital weather story I showed you how hail forms. The speed of the updraft in the thunderstorm determines the size of the hailstone. So, how big can hailstones grow?

Hail sizes range from pea size, one-quarter-inch, to marble size, one-half-inch. Penny-size is three-quarters of an inch. Nickle size, seven-eights. We start moving into severe levels with one-inch hail, the size of a quarter. Ping-pong size hail is one-point-five-inches. Golf ball size one-point-seven-five. A hen egg size hailstone is two inches, a tennis ball is two-point-five, and a baseball size hail is two-point-seven-five. Softball size hail measures four inches. Grapefruit size four-point-five.
Hail becomes severe and can start causing damage at one inch, more so one-point-five-inches. The larger the hailstone, the worse the damage.

Hail to one-half-inch is common, three-quarters to one-inch uncommon, and one-point-five to two rare. Two-point-five to two-point-seven-five is very rare. Four and up, exceptionally rare.

Precipitation in the form of balls or irregular lumps of ice, always produced by convective clouds, nearly always cumulonimbus.
An individual unit of hail is called a hailstone. By convention, hail has a diameter of 5 mm or more, while smaller particles of similar origin, formerly called small hail, may be classified as ice or snow pellets. Thunderstorms that are characterized by strong updrafts, sizeable liquid water contents, large cloud-drop sizes, and great vertical height are favorable to hail formation. The destructive effects of hailstorms upon plant and animal life, buildings and property, and aircraft in flight render them a prime object of weather modification studies. In aviation weather observations, hail is encoded A.