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Member since: Thu Mar 16, 2006, 03:07 PM
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ALERT: Major Tornado Outbreak Expected Tomorrow From MS to OH

TO THE ADMINS: I have knowingly copied this entire diary due to the importance and urgency of it's content. I know that weatherdude wishes the information to be as widespread as possible. If you still want me to edit it to the standard 3-4 paragraphs, I will gladly do so. All links within the diary (and there are several) can be found at the source: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/03/01/1069996/-ALERT-Major-Tornado-Outbreak-Expected-Tomorrow-In-MS-AL-TN-KY-IN-OH?via=siderec .

Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 07:07 PM PST
ALERT: Major Tornado Outbreak Expected Tomorrow From MS to OH
by weatherdude

The atmosphere is setting up for what could be described as a major tornado outbreak during the day tomorrow (Friday March 2). The current forecasts have the thunderstorms forming around noon, rapidly intensifying, and lasting into the evening and nighttime hours. The SPC has issued a moderate risk for severe weather for areas from AL/MS, a large part of Tennessee and Kentucky, as well as parts of Indiana and Ohio. There is a potential for long-track, intense tornadoes in the strongest storms that develop, as well as a damaging wind and large hail threat.

According to a Facebook post by the NWS, the SPC will likely upgrade the moderate risk to a "high risk" tomorrow -- the highest risk they issue. They only issue one or two high risks per year excluding last year. This has great potential to be a serious weather event, and it's one that needs to be taken seriously by anyone who lives in this area.

Contrary to what some local meteorologists are saying, this will NOT be as bad as the April 27, 2011 tornado outbreak. This has the possibility to be the biggest outbreak since April 27, but it will NOT be as bad as that tragic day. That was a once-in-a-generation outbreak that requires the perfect conditions in the atmosphere to occur. While all indications point to this being a potentially significant tornado outbreak, it is not analogous to the April 27th event.

A low pressure system will work its way into the Tennessee Valley through the morning and into the afternoon, which will provide sufficient lift to fire off thunderstorms in western TN and KY.

The NWS office in Nashville highlights how serious of an outbreak this is expected to be:


The severe weather parameters for tomorrow are pretty large. One of the big ones we look at for tornado development is called "helicity" -- which uses a mathematical formula to calculate the amount of rotation that can develop inside of a thunderstorm. A helicity value of about 150 is required for a supercell thunderstorm to form, with values at or above 450 required for violent (EF-4 to EF-5) tornadoes to develop.

The latest available model run (18z NAM) shows helicities between 500 and 550 across much of Tennessee and Kentucky. If current trends hold, all indications point to the possibility of significant tornadoes on the order of EF-3 or larger. I wouldn't be surprised if there's EF-4 or even EF-5 damage by sunrise on Saturday. It won't be as widespread as April 27th, but the potential for large, violent, long-track tornadoes is real.

As of right now, I believe the "bullseye" will be central TN and central KY. That could (and probably will) change as the 00z models are processed and released in the next few hours.

The SPC issues the next outlook around midnight Central Time, so we'll have a better idea of what's going on in a few hours. I'll have a more complete diary tomorrow morning, detailing who, what, when and where will get hit the worst.

Now is the time to prepare. Think about where you need to go tomorrow. If you can cancel or put it off, do that. Many school systems from AL to OH have plans to dismiss school early due to the threat of severe weather, so if you have kids, make sure you know what your local school system plans on doing tomorrow.

Pay attention to your local news. TV stations in the threat zone will likely go wall-to-wall coverage once the storms develop. Most news stations have a policy where they will start uninterrupted live coverage if a tornado warning is issued in their viewing area.

You need to start thinking about where you'll go if a tornado warning is issued. If you have a basement, go to your basement and (if possible) take shelter under the stairwell. If you don't have a basement, take shelter in an interior room like a bathroom or closet. Many people who survived the big tornadoes last year survived only because they were in an interior room.

Start gathering up your important documents (non-faked birth certificates, Social Security Cards, credit cards, loan documents, deeds and leases, etc.) and put them in an air-tight zipper bag. Keep them close so you can grab them and go to your shelter if a storm threatens.

Charge your cell phone tonight. Program an emergency telephone number into it. Make a contact in your phone or put a piece of paper in your wallet called EMERGENCY or ICE (In Case of Emergency). If something happens to you, emergency crews will see this emergency contact and call them without having to dig for information.

Wear durable clothes tomorrow. Jeans, strong shoes, socks. This sounds silly, but if you have a helmet, wear one if you go under a warning. Researchers at the University of Alabama recently found that wearing a helmet can improve your chances of survival if you're hit by a tornado. Many people die because tornado debris strikes or goes through the human head.

If a warning is issued...do not go outside and try to look for the tornado. People die because of their need to run outside and look for the tornado themselves. As soon as you hear the warning, go to your storm shelter whatever it may be. Turn up your TV and wait until they say that the tornado threat has cleared your location before assuming it's safe. Bring a battery operated radio and a flashlight with you in case your power goes out.

DO NOT RELY ON TORNADO SIRENS FOR YOUR WARNING. Many tornado siren systems are old and unreliable. Besides that, they're not designed to be heard indoors. Get a weather radio. Listen to local news. Go to the NWS online. There are a hundred other ways to get your tornado warnings, just do not rely on tornado sirens. Relying (or lack thereof) on tornado sirens was a major fatal mistake many people made in Joplin last May.

If the tornado hits your house/building, get down into the "tuck and cover" position. It's uncomfortable, but it's designed to reduce the surface area that can be hit by debris, as well as protect your head and neck from injury.

If you're out driving and you see a tornado, there are several options. Vehicular tornado safety is a very controversial subject in the meteorology community right now. Some say to try to drive away from the tornado if possible. Some say to get out of your car and lie flat in a ditch, but ditches tend to collect debris, so you might get injured or killed, then buried under debris. Your best bet is to go to a local business or NON-BOX (box stores like Walmart, Target, Home Depot are terrible places to be in a tornado) store to take shelter from the tornado. They will let you in. Whatever you do, DO NOT TAKE SHELTER UNDER AN OVERPASS. Not only can parking your car cause a traffic jam, but the confined space underneath an overpass actually speeds up the winds. Instead of taking cover, if the tornado hits you, you'll likely get sucked out and...well, you get the idea.

Get a programmable weather radio! Simply, a weather radio is a fire alarm for the weather. They save lives by sounding a loud siren the second the NWS issues a warning for your county.

I'll have another writeup tomorrow morning about this system, with rolling liveblogs throughout the day. Don't rely on my liveblogs for your warnings...they're there to let you know what's going on and to try to grab your attention to the bad weather...


...7:59 PM PT: To those curious, here are the TOR:CON values from Dr. Greg Forbes of The Weather Channel:

Friday March 2
AL north - 5
AL central (night) - 3
AR east, north-central - 3
GA north (night) - 3
IL south - 4
IN south - 4 to 5
KY central - 7
KY west - 4
KY east - 6
LA north - 3
LA central, southeast (night) - 3
MO southeast - 3 to 4
MS north - 5
MS central (night) - 3
NC west (night) - 3
OH - 3
TN north-central - 7
TN west - 4
TN east - 5 to 6
TN south-central - 5
WV west - 4
Other areas - less than 2

8:46 PM PT: Please ignore Inaccuweather's blatant attempt at fearmongering by insinuating that this system will be the 1974 Super Outbreak all over again. It won't be. "Accu"weather is in the business of sensationalism and profit.

GOP Translator

There seems to be a heightened amount of earthquake activity around Japan.

If you look at the quakes from Feb23-26, they are relatively small. On Feb 26, a 6.1 occurs near Taiwan. After that, the quakes register higher than before that on the richter scale, and they seem more frequent. Any thoughts?


Too funny -- Actual headline from Birmingham, Alabama:

Feb. 24, 2012


Did they do that on purpose???

CA Gov Jerry Brown SCHOOLS Right-Wing Reporter: "Are you a Moonie?"

Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 06:58 PM PST
CA Gov Jerry Brown SCHOOLS Right-Wing Reporter: "Are you a Moonie?"
by Shane Hensinger

I haven't seen anything about this posted, so I thought I'd share with you the illuminating back-and-forth between CA Governor Jerry Brown, in DC for National Governor's Conference, and Washington Times reporter Kerry Picket, which took place today.

For background: The Washington Times is a right-wing propaganda rag run by the Reverend Sun Myung Moon - head of the Unification Church. The political reporter for the Washington Times, Kerry Picket, thought she could spring a "gotcha" on Governor Brown and his press secretary, Gil Duran, today after Brown's meeting with HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. She was wrong.

Here's the transcript:

Reporter: Gov. Brown, you’ve gotten criticism that you’ve ceded…

Brown: I’ve gotten criticism? Only from the Washington Times…

Reporter: I understand that you’ve gotten some criticism that you’ve ceded way too much to the unions.

Brown: Give me an example.

Reporter: As far as the education, teachers unions, and just as far as some of the contracts that have been negotiated, that you could be making the same mistake that you made in your last administration...

Brown: Which one was that?

Reporter: … Back in the day.

Brown: When California had a $6-billion surplus and was leading America, if not the world, in many different fields?

Reporter: Well, right now it’s going bankrupt.

Brown: That’s untrue. I’ve reduced the deficit that was left to me by a Republican governor from $26 billion to $9 billion and I have a plan to reduce it to zero.

Reporter: So you’re saying that the reason that California is going bankrupt is...

Brown: No, that’s not true. We’re going far. I mean, we’re doing quite well.

Duran: You need to ask a question that’s based on the truth.

Brown (to Duran): You don’t have to argue with her…

Duran: No, S&P just upgraded to positive. That’s not bankrupt.

Reporter: No, actually, because when Reagan came in later on, things actually changed.

Brown: No, Reagan came before me. Reagan came after my father and then I came after Reagan.

Reporter: And then you actually lost your term thereafter, no?

Brown: No, I’m the only Democratic governor in history to serve three terms. In fact only two governors have ever served a third term.

Reporter: So why is it then, that we’re seeing from the bankruptcy though...

Duran: There is no bankruptcy. That’s a lie. You’re lying.

Brown: California has a $2-trillion economy.

Reporter: Why am I a liar?

Brown: Last year… Are you a Moonie by any chance?

Reporter: Sir…

Duran: And your facts are totally wrong. I can prove it to you.

Brown: Because your incisiveness is kind of suspect. Anyway. California, the economy is doing better, it’s coming back. The private economy added $90 billion, and that feeds into the public sector as well. There are deficits because there’s been excesses in the last decade, brought on principally by the mortgage bubble and breakdown. And we’re now cleaning up after that mess. It does take a while to do that. I’d say we’re on a very positive course. Not as rapid as I would like, but the trajectory is all in the right direction.

Reporter: Thank you, sir.


TOM TOMORROW: Sex Talk with Rick Santorum

Mon Feb 20, 2012 at 06:50 AM PST
Sex Talk with Rick Santorum
by Tom Tomorrow


Earthquake map -- Focus on Japan

Recently I posted an OP titled "Scientists:'Big One' Building Beneath Fukushima" http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002316346 .

I have been keeping a very close eye on events at Fukushima. Today, I ran across two excellent earthquake maps from 2011. One is worldwide and the other focuses on Japan. They are astounding. Watch what happens after March 11, 2001. Unfortunately, neither contains any data from 2012. In the last 6 weeks, the seismic activity around Fukushima has been remarkable. Just today, there was a report of 4 quakes near Fukushima within 90 minutes -- 2 of them registered at 5.1: http://enenews.com/4-quakes-90-minutes-fukushima-began-several-hours-after-intensity-5-quake-ibaraki. All of the reactors at Fukushima are of concern, but especially Reactor 4 which is already leaning and ready to collapse.

In any case, watch the maps...They are incredible.

A rising tide lifts all... oh, never mind...

Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 05:30 AM PST
A rising tide lifts all... oh, never mind...
by MattWuerker

Chosen Panel

Rolling back the clock

Fri Feb 17, 2012 at 06:50 AM PST
Rolling back the clock
by Matt Bors

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