3/9/10

Tornado season is upon us


Last night saw the first tornado of 2010 in Okieland, which was about 60 miles away from us. This morning I had an email from my mum who had seen it on the news in England apparently, and as she knows it was close wanted to check on us! This has tickled us, as it's a small tornado for here and so for it to make the news abroad is funny. But as the Hubster said, a tornado is still a tornado and newsworthy for those who don't get them like we do.

Above you can see one of the amazing storm prediction tools our weather forecastors use. Okieland is rightfully home to the National Weather Service HQ and the warnings we are given are the best in the world. The map shows the exact path they know the storm will track along, the time it will arrive and the strength. The only thing this doesn't show is whether a tornado is on the ground. But some even show the 'hook echo' a radar image of the strongest circulation, which pinpoints where a tornado is likely to be on the ground.


This was the end result (taken off the TV), a probable F2 tornado on the ground for 30 minutes, mainly across sparsely populated land. Sadly though it did destroy five homes in Hammon, but narrowly missed the centre of this small town and there were no injuries.


I was predictably driving all over town for photo's as the storm clouds rolled into our area. I took this 5 miles north of town and it shows the huge cloud formations, but all that came out of this was some lightening.


But the view in this photo perfectly demonstrates why I am excited for the first time at the the arrival of storm season. I never thought I'd say it, but I had a ball tonight chasing the spectacular skies and the wide open space here allows me to capture the grand scale of our storms.

With more time here I have learned to read the weather, I trust the forecastors and I know what to do in an emergency situation. Now if a tornado is ever bearing down on my hometown, there's no doubt I'll be a headless chicken. But I have enough knowledge to ensure my own safety and can therefore appreciate natures grand show at moments like these.

Ya never know, I might be a storm chaser yet!

15 comments:

A Brit in Tennessee said...

I think you would make a great storm chaser !
We are also used to tornados in early Spring, I have those same mixed feelings.....hate to see them come, yet love to follow their path.
Hmmmm.

Mary said...

Amazing photos! You should put your cloud photos in one of those books you can make online (my son and his wife just did that with their wedding photos and it's wonderful).

Florence and Mary said...

Have fun chasing the storms!

Victoria

Pam said...

Britgal Sarah, storm chaser indeed! Those photos are ahhh-may-zing. Beautifully done. No make that Gorgeously Done!

Pat said...

Gorgeous shots of the deadly clouds! I agree with A Brit in Tennessee...you'd make a great storm chaser.

A few weeks ago, a very small tornado hit Huntington Beach, near the coast in southern California (just south of LA). That was a shocker. My son's friend had a fence that was damaged by it, and a neighbor lost a few shingles from his roof. Nothing like what happens in OK, but still a shocker!

CambridgeLady said...

I think it made the news here in the UK because it's such an early start to the season:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/8558005.stm

Take care! Looks scary :S

CambridgeLady said...

That link should end .stm - it's cut off for some reason!

Star said...

I freaked out when I heard the tornado warning in Knoxville one day! Fortunately, it passed by and went over Oakridge instead and I don't know if there was much damage. I have seen bad storms there but nothing too drastic. I've yet to experience a nearby tornado.
However, in the last year or two we have had an earthquake and a couple of tornadoes (very small ones) in England.
Blessings, Star

imac said...

Wellies and camera, at the ready.

Daryl said...

I can certainly understand the excitement of storm chasing .. I would stick to cloud chasing myself .. I do love those photos ...

elvira pajarola said...

Incredible......The Impression of a Tornado....!!! The pictures are Fabulous...but only looking at these clouds make me feel a little worried!!
Take care!
ciao ciao elvira

Jill of All Trades said...

Oh gosh, I was thinking about you when I was watching the weather!

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

I predict you will be a full fledged stormchaser by next year.

Last rotation we had in Tulsa, I was told that after the wife, son, dogs, cats, photographs, china, and ceramics, that regretfully there was no more room at the inn!

Almost American said...

Yup, DH commented that the tornado season has started early. He helps design the equipment the stormchasers use!

Gorgeous photos Sarah, but I'm glad you know how to stay safe!

Oz Girl said...

I'm laughing, I think perhaps we should join forces since we both seem to love the stormy skies the best! :) Oh crap, there goes the weather radio already...