Saturday, September 8, 2012

12:40pm: Storm Update!

UPDATE 1:02PM: TORNADO WARNING on the "Hagerstown" cell -- the tornado is where the green and red come together in this Doppler velocity display. The tornado warning = red polygon.  Take cover Smithsburg and up toward Rouzerville.

UPDATE: 12:44PM EDT: Storm line north-south near Hagerstown looks capable of causing damage. Severe thunderstorm warning (yellow polygon) in effect.

Tornado warning continues for parts of western Connecticut (red polygon). Radar from 12:32pm EDT. Severe thunderstorm warning = yellow polygon.

Meanwhile, AccuWeather Regional Radar at 12:25pm EDT shows the damaging wind threat developing farther west.

The storm near Hagerstown looks dangerous. Damage has been reported with the cluster of storms from north central PA into south central NY. These storms will continue to strengthen.  The watches (see below) continue in effect.

So, how to prepare? If you have time (NOT if you are already under a warning or if storms are approaching), see below:  

Throughout this area, bring in lawn furniture, trampolines, flower pots and other items that could be blown about.

If you don't have a NOAA Weather Radio, you may wish to purchase one or purchase one of the smart phone apps that use GPS to trigger storm warnings for specific locations. 

There probably isn't time to get a generator prepared. So, go to Radio Shack, Sears, or a similar store and purchase a power inverter that can keep your cell phone or laptop charged or run a small refrigerator intermittently to keep medicine or other essentials chilled. They are well worth the small investment. Of course, your car's gas tank should be filled and the garage door kept open when running your car and the inverter. You may also need an extension cord(s).

When a tornado watch is issued, keep the kids nearby and make sure that infirm relatives can get to shelter. Where to shelter in a tornado warning?

  • The best place is a basement under the stairwell or study furniture like a pool table. 
  • If you don't have a basement, get into a closet or bathroom in the middle of the house and get into the tub. Put as many walls as possible between you and the tornado.
If you have a work or football helmet, put it on. 

If a severe thunderstorm warning is issued come indoors and stay away from windows.  

If you think sheltering is a good idea, it probably is. Don't necessarily wait for an official warning.

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