Tornado Outbreaks in the US

Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 07:43 pm
Update from WaPo blog:

8:00 p.m. update: As storms begin to run into the Appalachians, more than a dozen tornado warnings are active from West Virginia through eastern Kentucky and Tennessee, then down into the Gulf Coast states. The threat is expected to last into the night, particularly in the southeast U.S. where a large area of high tornado potential still exists.

Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 08:35 pm
Latest update at the WaPo blog:

9:00 p.m. update: Mulitple fatalities are now being reported out of West Liberty, Kentucky where a violent tornado appears to have hit earlier this evening. Tornado warnings continue tonight from far southwest Virginia and off to the southwest, including one in the northern suburbs of Atlanta, Ga.


Multiple Fatalities Reported In West Liberty
Posted: Mar 2, 2012 8:35 PM
Updated: Mar 2, 2012 8:41 PM

Devastating news out of Morgan County tonight. Multiple fatalities have been reported. Officials say many people were inside businesses when the storm hit. Vehicles outside flipped and rolled in the heavy wind.

Governor Steve Beshear has authorized the deployment of 50 Kentucky National Guard troops and a mobile Guard unit to Morgan County to assist with storm recovery efforts.

Officials say they are still working to determine how many people have been killed, and how many others have been injured. Reports say that West Liberty has essentially been leveled.

In other counties, the CEOC has confirmed four fatalities in Menifee County and one fatality in Kenton County.

We'll have the latest from West Liberty tonight on LEX 18 News at 11:00pm.
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Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 08:50 pm
Tornadoes kill at least 16 in Southern Indiana, Kentucky

At least 16 people were killed in Southern Indiana and Kentucky after a series of fierce storms carved a path through the Midwest on Friday afternoon.

The National Weather Service estimated there could have been 10 or more tornado touchdowns in the two states.

Kentucky declared a state of emergency, and Indiana officials said they were discussing that late Friday night.

As nightfall settled, crews were left to deal with the search for victims and begin the cleanup.

In the town of Chelsea in Jefferson County, Ind., first responders found a 4-year-old boy and his great-grandparents lying on the ground 50 feet from where the elderly couple’s home was blown off its foundation and thrown more than 100 feet away. All three died of multiple blunt force injuries, according to David Bell the county’s Emergency Management director.

A man who lived nearby on Jackson Road also was killed when the storm slammed into his residence, Jefferson County Sheriff John Wallace said.

The victims’ names were being withheld pending notification of relatives, Wallace said.

“All of this happened in less than 30 seconds,” said Cory Thomas, a Hanover volunteer firefighter, who was sitting in a firetruck watching and videotaping the funnel cloud as it moved from the north to the intersections of Ind. 62 and Jackson Road.

Michelle and Daniel Cartwright, whose parents lived at the intersection, had rushed from their home to his parents’ house to help his grandmother during the storm. They rushed her to the basement and heard a tremendous roar as the storm bore down on the house, Michelle Cartwright said.

“It’s undescribable. It sounded like the house was collapsing,” she said. “I thought I was gone. The windows shattered. Dust was flying everywhere.”

In Washington County, four people were found dead in a structure along Old Pekin Road , according to Sheriff Claude Combs. The victims were a family — two adults, a child and a baby, he said.

At least three children were taken to Kosair Children’s Hospital with storm-related injuries. A 2-year-old girl was flown to the hospital after being found in a field in Washington County, near Salem, said Cis Gruebbel, Kosair’s chief nursing officer.

The girl’s parents were eventually located and reunited with their daughter at the hospital. Gruebbel would not describe the girl’s injuries or her condition.

Clark County Sheriff Danny Rodden confirmed one storm-related death in the Henryville area. Crews were still searching homes on the numerous country roads in the area. Homes were being marked with check marks to indicate they had been searched.

The Henryville school complex suffered extensive damage as children were supposed to be dismissed from school. Teachers and staff kept many inside in bathrooms, hoping to protect them from the storm.

Indiana State Police Sgt. Jerry Goodin said no students were reported missing or injured.

Emergency workers and residents streamed by the school complex in the early afternoon, many trying to find loved ones who had been at the school when the storm hit.

The school’s roof had been torn off, segments of a wall knocked down and windows were blown out. At least half a dozen vehicles in the school’s parking lot had been crushed by falling debris.

Students were taken to the local community center to be reunited with families. State police said those looking for adult family members could go to the St. Francis Catholic Church, at Ind. 160 and U.S. 31. Those with minor injuries were being treated at the church basement.

The storm cut a wide swath from the high school across Henryville, destroying homes and businesses in its path. Hail described as the size of softballs also shattered automobile windows across the town. Hail driven by storm winds riddled the sides of several buildings like gunfire, leaving holes in siding and breaking windows.

In Marysville, 10 miles north of Charlestown along Ind. 3, most of the several dozen homes that make up the town were destroyed.

The Marysville Water Tower stood in stark contrast to the flattened structures around it. In some cases, bare concrete slabs were the only sign that a home had existed.

James Hilton, who took cover in the Marysville hardware store, rushed over to find his father, also named James, trapped inside his badly damaged home. “I went over there and pulled him out,” he said. Once free, his father began complaining of chest pains and had to be taken to the hospital by ambulance.

Leon Gilbert counted himself as one of the more fortunate residents as he arrived home from work to find the back wall of his home missing and the roof partially collapsed.

“It’s just a bad deal … but the main thing is everybody’s alive,” Gilbert said.

In New Pekin, Kendall Lewellyn huddled with his father and 7-year-old daughter, Jenessa, as a tornado roared through his parent’s home off Ind. 60. “She held onto the dog, I held onto her and my dad was right next to us,” he described.

The tornado devastated the entire neighborhood, including their one-story brick home and many mobile and manufactured homes. An ATV lay atop a couch, car tires hung from a tree and belongings were strewn throughout the area.

Lewellyn said the tornado “sounded like the roar of a freight train.”

His daughter, Janessa, 7, said she was scared and stayed next to her father. “I felt something hit my back,” she said.

Seven deaths were reported in Kentucky, with five confirmed by the state as of 9 p.m.

Four people died in Menifee County and one in Kenton County, according to the state. The Cincinnati Enquirer reported two other deaths in Kenton.

Gov. Steve Beshear declared a statewide emergency after officials confirmed that at least three tornadoes touched down across multiple counties, demolishing a fire station, damaging buildings and causing minor injuries but no fatalities.

One apparently hard-hit area was West Liberty, in Morgan County. Kentucky dispatched 50 National Guard troops and 12 civilian rescuers to the city after state officials were unable to reach emergency management officials there, said Chuck Wolfe, a Kentucky state government spokesman.

Wolfe said there have been unconfirmed reports of damage and casualties in Morgan County.

“It’s looking pretty bad in West Liberty,” Wolfe said.

Beshear’s declaration allows him to deploy state assistance, including the Kentucky National Guard, to affected counties without delays.

Buddy Rogers, spokesman for Kentucky Emergency Management, said the National Weather Service confirmed a tornado that touched down in Trimble County and stayed on the ground into neighboring Carroll County. That storm destroyed the Milton Fire Station No. 2, about 10 miles west of Bedford, said Kentucky State Police Trooper Brad Arterburn.

A mobile home was overturned and several barns were toppled in the county, Arterburn said. The only injuries reported were cuts and bruises, he said.

The other confirmed tornados were in Muhlenberg and Henderson counties in Western Kentucky, Rogers said. Kentucky State Police also reported a tornado in Warren County, near Bowling Green, but that one had not been confirmed Friday evening.

Beshear said there were 23,000 storm-related power outages across the state.

Schools shut down early, high school basketball games were postponed and Churchill Downs closed its off-track betting operations.

The winds and rain tore the roof of a gymnasium at North Hopkins High School near Madisonville in Western Kentucky. Hopkins County Emergency Management Director Frank Wright said the building was empty because school officials, after conferring with the National Weather Service, dismissed classes at 11:30 a.m. CST.

He said the winds and rain also caused the roof of an empty skating rink to collapse onto the skate floor.

Rogers said there were two reports of injuries in Trimble County, one reported injury in Union County in Western Kentucky and buildings were damaged in Grant and Pendleton counties in Northern Kentucky. Rescue teams were searching the debris of those buildings, Rogers said.

The storm also temporarily closed a major hub for Delta Air Lines after blowing debris on the runways. Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport spokeswoman Barb Schempf says one of three runways reopened Friday evening.

“It was limbs from trees, that sort of thing,” she said.

Schempf said officials were working as quickly as possible to get the other two runways open.

She said flights were delayed, while others were canceled and suggested that anyone flying check with their airline before going to the airport.
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Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 09:48 pm
According to the Weather Channel, radars are indicating there is a tornado on the ground in Alabama again tonight.

Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 10:20 pm
it's pretty damn red where Missy lives.

maybe she'll pop in later to say she's tipsy but otherwise normal...
Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 10:42 pm
Thmbs up.


It's rumbly outside - and it's not over yet.. but we're good.
Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 10:45 pm
Keep your NOAA radio on and by your bed.
Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 10:50 pm
Will do. Thanks Butrflynet. Smile
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Reply Fri 2 Mar, 2012 10:52 pm
Final update for the night from WaPo blog:

11:00 p.m. (and final) update: On his Twitter feed, Al Roker posted that Greg Forbes, the Weather Channel’s severe weather expert, said today’s outbreak might be the largest on record in March. It will be a few days before the full extent of this outbreak has been assessed.

Today’s death toll is now at least 28 (12 in Kentucky, 14 in Indiana, and 2 in Ohio). The National Weather Service has issued 269 tornado and 335 severe thunderstorm warnings (see remarkable map). Surely, without these warnings, the death toll would be much higher. NWS deserves much credit for its timely and accurate warnings today.

At the moment, the only active tornado warnings are in north central Georgia and east central Alabama. From this point forward, the region from south central Mississippi through western South Carolina probably has the highest chance of severe weather. Thunderstorms further north - responsible for the balance of today’s tornado outbreak - have been steadily weakening.

The weather folks really earned their allowances today.



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Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 04:08 am
Is this unusually early for them?
Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 06:23 am
Yes, tornadoes in northern hemisphere winter are very uncommon.
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Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 04:54 pm
Roughly speaking, they're 6 weeks too early.
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Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 05:31 pm
No word here or on FB today. Sending posivibes to Miss Mis and her peeps.
Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 05:55 pm
I don't know specifically which town she's in, only the general region. Hope this gives some helpful info to anyone who does know more specifics:



Alabama Red Cross Tornado Report

Birmingham, Ala (WIAT) The local Red Cross has issued a status report on its efforts after the Friday storms.

Volunteers with the American Red Cross Alabama Region are assessing the damage to homes throughout the state. Nationally, Red Cross is also responding to tornadoes and severe weather in 11 states.

Several areas in Alabama are still inaccessible due to downed power lines and trees in the road. Volunteers are assessing the damage in Chilton, Tallapoosa, Madison and Limestone Counties. Volunteers are also taking four Emergency Response Vehicles, or mobile feeding units, throughout affected areas in Madison and Limestone Counties to deliver meals, snacks, and water.

A Red Cross shelter is open at the following location:

Good Shepherd United Methodist Church

1418 Railroad Bed Road

Madison, AL 35757
Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 06:01 pm
Here's the Red Cross's Safe and Well/Searching For site:

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Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 07:44 pm
Miss mis?

Is the weather settling?

Looks terrible.
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Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 08:04 pm
Worrying about mismi & her family, too.
Thinking (& hoping!) it's local power failure issues which are causing her internet communication problems.
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Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 08:22 pm
What a horrible tragedy. Fingers crossed here for Mismi and neighbours...
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Reply Sat 3 Mar, 2012 10:37 pm
Found a bit more detail about damage in the Birmingham/north Alabama region:


Claire Aiello Web Content Manager

5:53 p.m. CST, March 3, 2012

The National Weather Service will send two to three teams in the field Saturday surveying tornado damage in Madison and Limestone counties.

Storms ripped through eastern Limestone county and north and northwest Madison County on Friday, destroying 40 homes and heavily damaging others. Three schools were also caught in the storm's path, but are okay.

In Madison County, 25 homes were destroyed and 50 homes have major damage.

In Limestone County, the EMA now says 75 homes were destroyed. Other homes also have damage.

Both the Madison County Commission and Limestone County Commission have declared local emergencies. Madison County has also opened a shelter at Good Shepherd United Methodist Church, located at 1418 Old Railroad Bed Road.

Approximately seven people were injured in the storms. As of Friday evening, all had been treated and released from Huntsville and Madison Hospitals.

Utility crews are working to restore power as well. Here is the latest on the effort to restore power.
Here are several areas that have damage:

Charity Lane in Toney - several homes on the end near Pulaski Pike have wind damage (to roofs, siding). Trees down, swingsets tossed into nearby yards.
Limestone Correctional Facility update - All of the inmates and staff are secure and safe. Damage assessments are still underway, with initial reports of operational damage to the perimeter fencing, canteen and training facilities, the K9 kennel, and roof damage on two inmate cell blocks. Approximately 300 inmates living in the affected areas will be temporarily housed elsewhere within the facility. There are no reports of serious injuries. One bloodhound, however, is missing.
Eleven homes are damaged in Canebrake subdivision of Limestone County.
At Indian Trace subdivision, a gas line broke and part of the subdivision is without gas service.
In Eagle Point subdivision on Nick Davis Road, several homes are heavily damaged.
Jacob's Landing area of Madison County was heavily damaged.
Moores Mill community - several homes damaged
Yarbrough Road in Harvest area - area hit on April 27, 2011; also hit again Friday
Meridianville - marquee at Meridianville Middle School damaged, but school was not hit. No one hurt at school. There are several areas damaged near the school though - several structures hit along Highway 231 north.
Roof damage at Buckhorn High School, and damage to the press box at the football field. About 30 cars in the parking lots had major damage from tree limbs and other debris. No one was hurt.
Roof damage at Buckhorn Middle School; no one was injured
Bob Wade Lane & Nick Fitcheard Road
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Reply Sun 4 Mar, 2012 08:39 am
I am terribly embarrassed about my thoughtlessness. And incredibly humbled by all of your care and consideration! Thank you so much.

We are fine. I wish I could tell you my power was out. We experienced mild storms compared to Madison county - the power was off and on - but we never lost it completely. It was just a thunderstorm and windy in this area. Thankfully. After staying up late and watching to see how the storms would fare I had to get up before 6:00am to get things ready for my family since I was going to work at a tradeshow to help friends with their booth. I left at 7:15am and did not get home until after 8:00pm. I went straight to bed without a thought in my head.

Thank you again so much for your thoughtfulness and please forgive me for not checking in. I truly am so sorry to cause you to worry.


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