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BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013

GUEST,mg 20 May 13 - 06:30 PM
Jack Campin 20 May 13 - 06:37 PM
Greg F. 20 May 13 - 06:50 PM
GUEST,mg 20 May 13 - 07:04 PM
Bill D 20 May 13 - 07:04 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 May 13 - 07:05 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 May 13 - 07:08 PM
Rapparee 20 May 13 - 07:39 PM
Bobert 20 May 13 - 07:43 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 May 13 - 08:51 PM
Rapparee 20 May 13 - 09:11 PM
ragdall 20 May 13 - 09:17 PM
Arthur_itus 20 May 13 - 11:18 PM
ChanteyLass 21 May 13 - 12:15 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 May 13 - 12:34 AM
Ebbie 21 May 13 - 12:56 AM
Arthur_itus 21 May 13 - 02:32 AM
Penny S. 21 May 13 - 04:46 AM
GUEST,mg 21 May 13 - 05:45 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 May 13 - 10:32 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 21 May 13 - 01:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 May 13 - 02:48 PM
JohnInKansas 21 May 13 - 03:38 PM
Elmore 21 May 13 - 03:53 PM
Bill D 21 May 13 - 04:55 PM
Penny S. 21 May 13 - 05:46 PM
Elmore 21 May 13 - 06:46 PM
Elmore 21 May 13 - 06:56 PM
GUEST,leeneia 21 May 13 - 10:26 PM
leeneia 21 May 13 - 11:23 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 May 13 - 11:25 PM
JohnInKansas 22 May 13 - 01:50 AM
GUEST,mg 22 May 13 - 03:12 AM
GUEST,leeneia 22 May 13 - 10:24 AM
Stringsinger 22 May 13 - 11:04 AM
Ringer 22 May 13 - 12:08 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 22 May 13 - 12:54 PM
Greg F. 22 May 13 - 01:13 PM
pdq 22 May 13 - 01:56 PM
GUEST,leeneia 22 May 13 - 03:10 PM
Greg F. 22 May 13 - 03:51 PM
GUEST,Eliza 22 May 13 - 05:28 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 22 May 13 - 07:41 PM
JohnInKansas 22 May 13 - 08:37 PM
Penny S. 23 May 13 - 04:49 AM
GUEST,leeneia 23 May 13 - 11:01 AM
JohnInKansas 23 May 13 - 11:52 AM
Stilly River Sage 23 May 13 - 01:07 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 23 May 13 - 01:11 PM
Peter K (Fionn) 23 May 13 - 01:56 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 23 May 13 - 03:12 PM
Peter K (Fionn) 23 May 13 - 06:09 PM
JohnInKansas 24 May 13 - 11:37 AM
JohnInKansas 24 May 13 - 11:44 AM
Peter K (Fionn) 24 May 13 - 12:36 PM
JohnInKansas 27 May 13 - 05:38 PM

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Subject: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 20 May 13 - 06:30 PM

Very very bad..they say people are trapped and calling for help. Children were in halls in schools. People will say now is not the time to speak of it but I disagree..where are the storm shelters? You don't see evidence of any in the pictures...certainly in new construction they should be mandatory..certainly in schools and hospitals...why do we keep building out of sticks in the Midwest? We know what will happen...why don't insurance companies insist on certain construction standards..I suppose they do but rethink them....build half the size house if you have to in order to afford this but build it. Pioneers did it..why don't we.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Jack Campin
Date: 20 May 13 - 06:37 PM

How do you expect people in a trailer park to fund a storm shelter out of downsizing their dwelling?


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Greg F.
Date: 20 May 13 - 06:50 PM

Well, since global warming & global climate change are figments of "liberal" imagination, I suppose these tornadoes are also figments of the imagination.

Not to worry.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 20 May 13 - 07:04 PM

I expect that there should be laws that any owner of a trailer park, camp ground etc. should have probably several storm shelters for people to go to. It is horrific and stupid when they are not forced to or do it voluntarily. And it is not like they have to drill through bedrock in some of these places...but fortunate if they do because then chip out the rock and make shelters and houses out of them. And places where there is great poverty often have an abundance of rock...some of it quite usable for construction...ship the rock to where fragile homes are being constructed and build stronger, perhaps smaller ones. Teach masonry in high schools so that there is no excuse for some of this ignorance..oh we can't quit building with wood because no one knows how to build with stones any more..or cement or whatever..oh the Chinese use up all the cement...figure out what the Chinese do and then do it here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Bill D
Date: 20 May 13 - 07:04 PM

When a 200MPH tornado hits directly, there are very few above ground shelters that will withstand it. If you heard the news reports, Oklahoma is right above a large bedrock formation. It is expensive to blast out underground places. VERY few places have basements. Many of those folks did have some sort of reinforced room in the house, and the schools had 8 inch thick block walls....hardly "building out of sticks".
Oklahoma does know how to build... within financial limits. Pioneers in various areas did things differently.... and one tornado didn't hit thousands at one time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 May 13 - 07:05 PM

I think we need a "Tornado of the Week" thread. There are storms headed through Texas and Oklahoma that are still heating up this evening, but an afternoon batch of them already clobbered Moore, OK this afternoon. That is a suburb of Oklahoma City.

http://www.wfaa.com/news/Tornado-in-Oklahoma-City-suburb-causes-destruction-208198471.html

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 May 13 - 07:08 PM

Mary, the storm shelters are in the schools - bathrooms, hallways, interior rooms and basements. In any given building on my campus, there are rooms marked as tornado shelters. But they aren't standard in regular neighborhoods or in homes. Everyone tends to have a home plan, a place to go in the house that has no windows, no large mirrors, etc. for seeking shelter. I have a closet and a hallway I have put to this use.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Rapparee
Date: 20 May 13 - 07:39 PM

I'm in Macon, Missouri and we're under a tornado watch until 10 p.m. CDT. I grew up in tornado country -- you do what Stilly says. Even living in Idaho we have plans for tornado and other storm sheltering. Every state in the US can and has had tornadoes. The only two disasters that are considered very, very unlikely where I live are hurricanes and tsunamis.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Bobert
Date: 20 May 13 - 07:43 PM

It has been reported on MSNBC that 23 3rd graders have be found dead... I hope the reports are wrong...

B:~(


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 May 13 - 08:51 PM

I was just looking at the New York Times. They say 37 dead at this point in time.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/21/us/tornado-oklahoma.html

"Keli Pirtle, a spokeswoman for the National Weather Service in Norman, Okla., said the tornado touched down at 2:56 p.m. Central Time and traveled for 20 miles. It was on the ground for 40 minutes, she said. It struck the town of Newcastle and traveled about 10 miles to Moore, a heavily populated suburb of Oklahoma City."

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Rapparee
Date: 20 May 13 - 09:11 PM

8 inch thick concrete (cinder) block walls are little protection in a tornado because they are mostly hollow inside. Poured, reinforced, concrete on a good foundation is another story, but I'd still want to be below ground if possible. There are plans for above-ground shelters, but they aren't cheap (but then, neither is life).


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: ragdall
Date: 20 May 13 - 09:17 PM

So much destruction and death. How horrible!
rags


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Arthur_itus
Date: 20 May 13 - 11:18 PM

My thoughts are with all of you over there, who are in the direct line of these tornado's.
It looks very bad on the news over here in the UK.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: ChanteyLass
Date: 21 May 13 - 12:15 AM

Are there any Mudcatters in Oklahoma? If so, I hope they are okay. I hope that when other states are hit, Mudcatters will check in and let us know how they are doing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 May 13 - 12:34 AM

The story is unfolding with each new discovery exponentially worse than the last. Radar images of the storm. Left, is the Moore, Oklahoma hook echo and debris ball. On the right is a 3D image is the tornado rotation.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma
From: Ebbie
Date: 21 May 13 - 12:56 AM

My God...


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Arthur_itus
Date: 21 May 13 - 02:32 AM

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-22604251


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Penny S.
Date: 21 May 13 - 04:46 AM

Been holding the people in my mind since last night.

Would curved roofed concrete shapes like bomb-proof hangars, only round, do the job?

Penny


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 21 May 13 - 05:45 AM

i have been thinking about cement igloos, perhaps half buried in the back yard. i do not believe that everyone there could not afford a shelter..some of those houses are costly..i have been looking at real estate listenings..contractors say they can put in basements, and others say too damp, too rocky whatever...even so they could put up a garage that was built to withstand tornadoes...don't need windows. garage doorsare a problem but they make special steel reinforced ones. i think it is a cultural thing..they got out of the habit of having storm shelters, are not used to having basements although people north of them do, with presumably same damp conditions...we have them in pnw and have very wet soil...people move to the area and might not realize how necessary they are..but how those structures got building permits is beyond me. i hope they publish names of architects and contractors, especialy for the schools, andlook for which structures survived and publish thier names as well. too much of this is preventable for not huge expense...and if it means you have half the house you wanted..well, hopefully it would stand.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 May 13 - 10:32 AM

The news this morning reports a "rare downward" count has been released - the medical examiner has concluded that the number 51 represented some double counts, that the true number, as of about 8am this morning, is 24. Still a stunningly high number, but better than the other.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 21 May 13 - 01:25 PM

Farmers in tornado alley often have underground shelters and survival equipment.

In the school that was destroyed, some sheltered in the basement, usually the safest, but were drowned.

A storm of EF 4-5 (200 mph) is hard to defend against. It took down brick walls and debris was whirled 20,000 feet into the air. The hospital lost its second story.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 May 13 - 02:48 PM

NASA view of Moore, OK tornado.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 21 May 13 - 03:38 PM

In most of the areas where tornados are likely, "storm proof" residential construction has become fairly popular, although of course that only affects new homes. One recent "quote from an expert" claimed that new (above ground) structures using the latest methods should have an 85% chance of "surviving" a tornado, although "the expert" probably didn't mean "without damage."

The construction changes for residential homes are very similar to the changes appearing in newer construction in "hurricane prone" areas.

In most areas, but especially near where a "notable" tornado has occured, trailer (mobile home) parks are required to have a "storm shelter" with adequate size to hold "all the residents." It's not uncommon to find "grandfathering" of old parks where the "new requirement" gets waived simply because there's no land left where a shelter can be constructed. Most places have added requirements for "permanent foundations," "tie downs," and "full skirting" of all "mobile homes" and these things have made a significant improvement in resistance to "little storms" but of course don't do much in a tornado (or hurricane).

Many places have requirements for "storm proof" areas in schools, but again these are mostly "recently added" requirements and there are far too many places where the schedule is for them to be added "soon."

While the common notion is that "underground" is the only safe place in a tornado there have been lots of "errors" in planning, since it's easy to "go down" but not always as easy to "get out" after a storm has dumped the neighbor's house on top of the front door where you planned to come out of the shelter. Above ground "shelters" can be built, and most retrofit "safe areas" in schools and existing buildings are made by finding the safest existing place and adding reinforcement and other features to make it safer.

While the infamous "tornado alley" through Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska is where most "storm systems" begin to produce a threat of tornados, the "Dixie alley" a little east typically suffers more damage, both in property and death/injury, from more numerous smaller tornados.

In the Dixie alley population concentrates in valleys, and the storms tend to follow the valleys. Soil conditions don't make good shelters easy. High density of "mobile home" and other questionable constructions are common. Much of the construction, even the better built stuff, is a lot older. (There's more stuff on the list.)

On a tornados-per-square mile basis, England holds the record; but their tornados tend to be "wimpy" in comparison to ones elsewhere.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Elmore
Date: 21 May 13 - 03:53 PM

Sorry for all the people affected. I was also sorry for those victimized by Hurricaine Sandy. Oklahoma Senators Inhofe and Coburn voted against federal aid to the victims of Hurricaine Sandy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Bill D
Date: 21 May 13 - 04:55 PM

The Senators in Oklahoma are bigger 'blow-hards' than the storms.... on many topics.

I would not deny aid to Oklahoma, though. The people need help.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Penny S.
Date: 21 May 13 - 05:46 PM

I gather the two senators aren't against federal aid, but feel it should be balanced by reductions elsewhere in the budget. Which presumably means appropriating it from someone else's needs.

Penny


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Elmore
Date: 21 May 13 - 06:46 PM

As long as it's not their needs. Right, Penny? What?


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Elmore
Date: 21 May 13 - 06:56 PM

Penny: Just realized you were using irony. Sorry . Didn't mean to be a G. D. troll.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 21 May 13 - 10:26 PM

"Would curved roofed concrete shapes like bomb-proof hangars, only round, do the job?"

That's a good question, Penny. I've been wondering the same thing since I saw a video which discussed a tornado which hit a suburb of Chicago several years ago. (I can't remember the name of the town.) The video showed many homes in ruins, yet a Catholic church made of curving concrete surfaces seemed to have nothing wrong with it but chipped paint.

No doubt the windows were shattered, but the building seemed to be fine.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: leeneia
Date: 21 May 13 - 11:23 PM

This article has photographs which I found interesting to study.

http://www.theatlantic.com/infocus/2013/05/photos-of-tornado-damage-in-moore-oklahoma/100518/

Thoughts: this was an EF 4 tornado, with winds of 200 mph. Photo 4 shows the path of it through a suburban neighborhood. 33 homes are completely destroyed.

106 homes are visible, and they look unharmed. (They probably are not.) There is debris in their yards, and each piece of that debris may have been capable of killing someone. When we think about shelters, we should keep in mind that anyone is far more likely to be in a nearby home than in the very path of the tornado. Having a safe room makes a lot of sense.

Most victims are killed by flying debris. Take a look at the hospital - pieces of tree branch have been driven straight through its masonry facing. Imagine a person being hit by such a thing. There would be no surviving.

There is a photo of a grade school which has been demolished. Cars have been thrown into the walls and landed upside down. Yet even in the very path of the tornado, certain little cubicles (what are they? offices? restrooms?) remain intact.

I surprises me that in two cases, homes are completely splintered yet the above-ground pool is still there. Does this tell us something?

Finally, the look on the face of the little girl being lifted out of the ruins will remain with me all my life. Also the picture of the woman carrying a child in her arms across the devasted land.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 May 13 - 11:25 PM

Penny S and Elmore were both right - the mentality of politicians in the U.S. is such that they can't see the pain in someone else's states, only in their own. It's really depressing to live here and watch these jackasses act this way. Yet none of them will prosecute bankers and brokers who caused so many of the lower-and-middle-class fiscal problems that have been inflicted on the nation since the whole sub-prime mess started.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 22 May 13 - 01:50 AM

IF YOU WANT TO BE SAFE FROM TORNADOS ---

I'm not sure I have anything much to offer, but the (in)Famous US FEMA organization does have a library where you can download "plans" for how to build a tornado "safe room."

These are "construction plans" that should be sufficient for any contractor to put together any of the configurations described. Many DIY builders could probably do the work, but some of the materials are a bit "exotic" and getting the right stuff could present problems.

A MINOR DIFFICULTY is that the individual drawings (pages) available are in .DWG format, and unless you have one of the "drawing/design" programs that uses that format you probably won't be able to open them.

IF YOU GO TO THE BOTTOM OF THE PAGE, you will find a link to download "All of it (320 .DWG files) in one PDF file." The drawings show several different configurations, so you can pick something to fit your back yard or basement, etc.

FEMA warns that this is a very large file that may take a long time to download. They were right in my case, as it did take almost 10 seconds. At 12,762 KB it's possible some might have problems opening the pdf, but I didn't see any. (I think the internet is a little faster than when these were posted?)

The LINK IS: FEMA Library: FEMA P-320 - Taking Shelter From the Storm: Construction Plans and Specifications.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 22 May 13 - 03:12 AM

people are suggesting cement sewer pipe. i have no idea...they worry about water getting in. if there are no snakes etc. better a foot of water than being blown away. we have a tendency nowadays to come up with all sorts of reasons why something can not be done..we can't afford it..some of these houses were in the hundreds of thousands...certae ly 10K would have helped..we can't protect against 200 mph itornadoes.perhaps not, but maybe 150....we hit bedrock..i have been reading it is 20 to 100 feet down...won't hit it right away it seems..and if it is high up it seems that would be good..clay soils are a problem..but we have a country full of engineers, the best in the worldl. we have a history of pioneers who went out with a shovel and a pickax and they had storm shelters...we need to be looking for solutions to problems not saying how they can not possibly be solved...


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 22 May 13 - 10:24 AM

People are building shelters, mg. I have two friends who have new homes, and both of them have a safe area.

Thanks for the link, John.

But before we get too critical of people who don't build shelters, let us keep in mind that a considerable fraction of the people in the US are living in poverty. They don't even have enough to eat, let alone to spend money on a tornado shelter, when the odds are they will never see one.
======
By the way, where do they get the idea that the tornado in Moore was two miles wide? The track you can see in the article I linked was 3 or 4 houses wide. How far is that? 300 to 500 feet?


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Stringsinger
Date: 22 May 13 - 11:04 AM

We're going to see more unless we curb global warming by going after the energy company corporations.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Ringer
Date: 22 May 13 - 12:08 PM

"We're going to see more [tornadoes] unless we curb global warming by going after the energy company corporations."

Energy company corporations, Stringsinger, merely supply a demand. A demand created by people like you who require electricity to power the PCs they use to post comments on boards like this. If there wasn't the demand, there would be no energy company corporations. If anyone is responsible, it is folks like you (and folks like me, but I'm not the one making ignorant remarks).

As it happens, this Oklahoma tornado cannot be laid at the door of "global warming;" the severity of tornadoes in recent years has been decreasing NOT increasing.

But don't let facts get in the way of a rant against global warming, will you?

(It may have escaped your notice that there has been no "global warming" for a decade and a half now.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 22 May 13 - 12:54 PM

Some interesting videos on TIME U.S.

The Time article says the width was about one mile. Width is difficult to determine since the twister is moving from side to side in its path. as well as having the forward component.

I saw damage pictures that were blocks wide.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Greg F.
Date: 22 May 13 - 01:13 PM

But before we get too critical of people who don't build shelters, let us keep in mind that a considerable fraction of the people in the US are living in poverty.

1. I'm not critical of them - but they should live with the results of not building one without whining unduly. What do they expect in tornado alley? They've never seen the results of a tornado before?

2. If Oklahoma wasn't a very "Red" state infested with anti-tax, anti-government TeaPublicans and Fundagelicals, perhaps community shelters could be built - and especially shelters at scools - and shelters could be legally required for businesses with more than x employees.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: pdq
Date: 22 May 13 - 01:56 PM

...from the kindly gent, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI):


"So, you may have a question for me," Whitehouse said. "Why do you care? Why do you, Sheldon Whitehouse, Democrat of Rhode Island, care if we Republicans run off the climate cliff like a bunch of proverbial lemmings and disgrace ourselves? I'll tell you why. We're stuck in this together. We are stuck in this together. When cyclones tear up Oklahoma and hurricanes swamp Alabama and wildfires scorch Texas, you come to us, the rest of the country, for billions of dollars to recover. And the damage that your polluters and deniers are doing doesn't just hit Oklahoma and Alabama and Texas. It hits Rhode Island with floods and storms. It hits Oregon with acidified seas, it hits Montana with dying forests. So, like it or not, we're in this together."


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 22 May 13 - 03:10 PM

There is no such thing as tornado alley. Decisions would be easier if there was, but there isn't.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Greg F.
Date: 22 May 13 - 03:51 PM

Used "tornado alley" as a time-saving euphemism. Would you prefer "in an area where serious tornadoes are an annual, common and frequent occurrence"??

All said and done, means the same bloody thing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 22 May 13 - 05:28 PM

Chris Bell (whom I mentioned above) is a highly qualified American meteorologist with much actual experience of tornadoes, and even HE called it Tornado Alley. He was on TV just this evening doing our weather forecast. So I imagine the term is perfectly acceptable.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 22 May 13 - 07:41 PM

Yes, leeneia, there is a Tornado Alley.

See Wikipedia for description of "Tornado Alley," applied to the area between the Rocky Mountains and the Appalachian Mountains.

The term "Tornado Alley" was first used in 1952 by U. S. Air Force meteorologists Major Ernest J. Fawbush and Captain Robert C. Miller as the title of a research project to study severe weather in parts of Texas and Oklahoma.

There also is a "Dixie Alley" and several smaller alleys.

See John P. Gagan et al., A historical and statistical comparison of "Tornado Alley" to "Dixie Alley", National Weather Digest, Dec. 2010, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 146-155.

Above from Wikipedia.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 22 May 13 - 08:37 PM

The real "tornado alley" obviously isn't even in the US.

As noted above:

"On a tornados-per-square mile basis, England holds the record; but their tornados tend to be "wimpy" in comparison to ones elsewhere."

Canada has about as many tornados as the US, but in both cases there's lots of "empty land" where the majority of them do relatively little damage.

Most of the weather systems likely to generate tornados in the US form up in the "tornado alley," usually in the afternoon, and given the average rate at which the systems move, they're likely to spawn tornados in the "Dixie alley" a little east of there in the middle of the night when people aren't paying attention(?) and when visual tracking to get warnings out are virtually useless, so that smaller storms can hurt more people.

The dangers, and the answers (if we ever really find any) depend on lots of different things. If "generalizing" about what you think "everybody" ought to do makes you feel better, that's fine; but you ain't gonna really help many of the rest of us with it.

When a disaster hits, it's usually pretty clear what kinds of things need to be done to help, and we all of course will do what we can. The things that must be done to help in a recovery are amazingly consistent regardless of what caused the damage, so it doesn't matter much what did it.

Tornado proofing all the houses wont' prevent floods. Hurricane proofing them won't keep the mansions in California from sliding into the ocean. We could (maybe) overcome stupidity of there wasn't so dam*ed much of it - - but of course it sells for a good price so people will keep making it.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Penny S.
Date: 23 May 13 - 04:49 AM

When they write of our frequency of tornadoes, how are they defining them?

I've seen three rotating winds around the school where I taught - well, not seen the winds, but seen the stuff in them, formed in hot afternoons to the east of the town, then moving westwards. One picked up a load of sports day programmes and carried them upwards a couple of hundred feet - it was about 50 feet across and moved in a very leisurely way across the sports field. One picked up someone's pushchair parasol and twirled it around in the air. One dawdled across our playground, whipping up dist, and stirred the paper on displays in the hall (the windows being open, high up). I'd have called them dust devils or williwillis. Do they count as tornadoes?

I also saw a waterspout off Dover, not a hot day, and in the morning. Does that count? It was quite skinny.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 23 May 13 - 11:01 AM

Tornado Alley," applied to the area between the Rocky Mountains and the Appalachian Mountains...

How wide is that? 1000 miles? It's not an alley in any sense of the word.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 23 May 13 - 11:52 AM

Most references to "tornado alley" are to the states where the cells form up into the kinds of systems likely to generate tornados. The west edges of Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas are probably the most likely places where this starts to happen, although Nebraska and the Dakotas are only a little less likely. The storm systems generally move toward the east. Sometimes they come together into narrower paths but often they stay pretty wide.

While a thousand miles wide may not sound like an "alley" you have to realize that the storm systems moving through the alley are generally about that wide, so you're not talkin' about a bike path. If you're moving a thousand mile wide weather system through, a thousand mile wide alley is appropriate.

And the geography where the storms form up does extend into Canada, where there are almost as many tornados as in the US, but perhaps fewer "places of value" in the most common paths they follow there.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 May 13 - 01:07 PM

It is a thing that exists as far as the experiences of the residents east of the Rockies and toward Appalachia, running from the Gulf up into the Canadian hinterlands up the middle of the continent. If you've ever looked at the strong lines of thunderstorms as they sweep across the prairies, you know that the storms form because of the cold air coming down from Canada hitting the warm air that funnels up from the Gulf of Mexico. The convergence effect isn't hindered by updrafts off of mountains.

There may not be a built structure, there is a corridor of weather, and calling it Tornado Alley makes perfect sense if you've ever lived here. Tornado Alley is at least as well defined as "Bible Belt," and there is no such thing as a Bible Belt, either, but we all understand what it means (and alas, I have dual citizenship in Tornado Alley and the Bible Belt.)

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 23 May 13 - 01:11 PM

The NOAA (U.S. Government, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, uses the general term "tornado alley" for the south-central states.
http://www.de.noaa.gov/oa/climate/severeweather/tornados.html

Frequency, annual- Texas 155 very large area), OK 62, KS 96, Nebr 57, S. Dak 36, IA 51, IL 54, MO 40, MN 45; Alabama 43, MS 44.

The whole of Canada gets about 100/year; S. Ont., S. Man, S. SK and AB.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Peter K (Fionn)
Date: 23 May 13 - 01:56 PM

What, a Godless Okie?


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 23 May 13 - 03:12 PM

What's your abode, PK? So I can trash it too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Peter K (Fionn)
Date: 23 May 13 - 06:09 PM

Newark UK, Q. But what's got you cross? You think the reporter was in order? Or maybe you're God?


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 24 May 13 - 11:37 AM

I have dual citizenship in Tornado Alley and the Bible Belt.

As one in the same situation, I'd say being in the Bible Belt is more dangerous overall than being in Tornado Alley, since it's there with a new attack every day; and no one has ever figured out how to build a BB shelter.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 24 May 13 - 11:44 AM

If anyone would like a realistic look at where tornados happen and what trends are of interest, I'll suggest a look at:

Curse or coincidence? Scientists study Tornado Alley's past and future


It's a fairly long article, and the pictures are fairly important in "getting the picture."

It also helps to have some knowledge of the geography, but you'll have to supply that from your own (half)vast stores of general information.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: Peter K (Fionn)
Date: 24 May 13 - 12:36 PM

no one has ever figured out how to build a BB shelter

LOL


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Subject: RE: BS: Tornado in Oklahoma - May 2013
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 27 May 13 - 05:38 PM

A curiosity with respect to how "disasters" are reported may be observed in the recent "fluff" report. The headline claims to report "natural disasters" but includes at least one "terrorist bombing" that seems to be not exactly an "act of nature." Kansas, however, did not make the list, apparently only because they failed to consider the Governor "a natural enough disaster." Maybe a little bit of "unnatural is permissible," but some things are just too far out. That may also explains the FEMA failure to offer plans for that BB shelter mentioned a few days back.

Of course any list of the kind is just "somebody's list" so you have to decide whether to agree or disagree - or ignore.

10 states with the most natural disasters

Doug Whiteman
Bankrate
27 May 2013

Some states find themselves in the crosshairs of disaster far more than others. U.S. presidents have declared nearly 2,000 major disasters in the 50 states and the District of Columbia over the past 60 years as of April 2013, but just 10 states have been responsible for a third of those. See if you live in one of these disaster-prone states -- and if you do, you may want to review your insurance policies.

10. Missouri
The Show-Me State has had disastrous weather in every month of the year: severe snow and ice storms in winter, tornadoes during the spring, summer and fall, and flooding at virtually any time.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 53

9. Arkansas
Arkansas has been walloped by heavy rain, snow, ice, tornadoes and flooding over the years and has even taken poundings from tropical storm systems, though it's not a coastal state. In 2008, storms and tornadoes associated with Hurricane Gustav littered streets with debris, damaged buildings, roads and bridges, and knocked out electric cooperatives.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 54

8. Kentucky
The disaster roster in Kentucky has included landslides, mudslides and rockslides, along with flooding and tornadoes. The state was ripped up in 2008 by the remnants of Hurricane Ike. Another major disaster declaration involved a record snowfall in late 2004, and yet another stemmed from a 1981 series of chemical explosions in Louisville sewers.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 56

7. Alabama
This Gulf Coast state has been battered by hurricanes, including Isaac in 2012, Gustav in 2008, Katrina and Dennis in 2005, and Ivan in 2004. But tornadoes in April 2011 rivaled the hurricanes for destructive power, lashing the state with winds that exceeded 210 mph and leaving about 250 people dead and an estimated $1.5 billion in damage.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 57

6. Louisiana
It has taken Louisiana years to recover from Hurricane Katrina, the now-legendary 2005 storm that government officials say killed nearly 1,000 residents and caused tens of billions of dollars in damage. The Gulf state has been visited by numerous hurricanes including 1969's Camille, a Category 5 storm that came ashore with 190 mph winds.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 60

5. Florida
The Sunshine State has been pummeled by dozens of tropical storm systems since the 1950s -- none worse than Hurricane Andrew in 1992. The Category 5 hurricane with gusts of more than 200 mph held the title as the most expensive natural disaster in U.S. history until Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Severe freezes have been disastrous for Florida farming on multiple occasions.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 65

4. New York
Across its empire that stretches from the Great Lakes to the Atlantic coast, New York has been lashed at by blizzards and tropical storms. In 2012, Superstorm Sandy killed nearly 50 in the state and caused more than $40 billion in damage. New York also received disaster declarations for the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks that destroyed the World Trade Center and an earlier bombing in the complex's garage.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 67

3. Oklahoma
The recent monster tornado that blasted through the Oklahoma City suburbs is only the latest devastating storm to hit a state that recorded an average of 55 twisters per year since 1950. The worst tornado in recent history struck near Oklahoma City in May 1999 with unprecedented winds in excess of 300 mph that killed 36 people. Oklahoma also has endured severe winter storms, wildfires, floods and the 1995 terrorist bombing that killed 168 people at the Oklahoma City federal building.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 73

2. California
The nation's most populous state also is one of the most disaster-prone due to wildfires, landslides, flooding, winter storms, severe freeze and even tsunami waves. But earthquakes are the disaster perhaps most closely associated with California. The worst in recent years have included a magnitude-6.9 quake near San Francisco in 1989 that killed 63 and a magnitude-6.7 quake in Southern California in 1994 that killed 61.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 78

1. Texas
Within the Lone Star State's nearly 267,000 square miles (second only to Alaska in size), at least one major disaster is declared nearly every calendar year. Texas has dealt with tornadoes, floods, wildfires and regular coastal hurricanes. One of the deadliest and costliest in recent decades was Hurricane Celia, which tore up Corpus Christi in 1970. The storm left 13 dead and destroyed millions of dollars' worth of property.
Major disaster declarations since 1953: 86

© 2013 Bankrate, Inc. All Rights Reserved

John


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