Joe’s Weather Blog: “Remembering” several tornado anniversaries (FRI-5/4)
Good morning…our weather will be calming down for several days it appears and aside from a few showers in the region on Sunday, associated with a cold front coming through the area…the weekend looks great. There are no more severe weather threats through the early part of next week it appears. Temperatures will be near to above average…and we get some nice outdoor time for awhile.
Today: Some clouds/sun mixture but pleasant and less humid with highs in the 70s
Tonight: Clear and comfy with lows in the 50s
Saturday: Sunny and nice with highs near 80°
Sunday: Partly cloudy with a few showers out there but not enough to cancel outdoor plans. Highs in the 70s
Today’s blow is about looking back.
May 4th is a pretty important date in tornadic weather history…not only for the KC region but also for the Plain in general. There have been some pretty important tornadoes that occurred on this date.
Let’s go into the way back machine and talk about what happened on this date in 1977. Residents of Pleasant Hill were hit by an F3 tornado.
Tami Burkhart sent me this clipping from the newspaper showing the destruction of the High School there.
Somewhat more recent…is what happened on this date in 2003. This is the 15th anniversary of the devastating tornadoes that hit the NW and N parts of the KC Metro area…as well as some other areas in the region. Last night FOX 4 aired this special story reminiscing about what happened on that date. I will never forget the storm coverage and the 1st time I saw the images of this monster tornado ripping up parts of our city…and the damage afterwards..
Also on this date...back in 2007...the town of Greensburg, KS was hit by the 1st ever EF5 tornado. The town was mostly destroyed (95%) but has since recovered tremendously. They are truly in tornado alley.
10 years ago...I did an in depth report about what would happen IF the Greensburg tornado happened in the KC metro area...what would happen IF the weather pattern that crushed that area...was just 250 miles ENE of where it set-up that night. What would've happened here. I used nascent GIS data to come up with a bunch of facts and figures and it was an amazing story to do. So let's go back to that story...with the FOX 4 wayback machine.
Interesting to note that over the last year, I've been asked to do various what-if presentations about what happened out there and what could happen here. I've done two or three I think this Spring with another booked in June. It's a way for various folks who have to teach and learn about this stuff to understand the "spider web" of complications that something like this can cause.
Anyway...always important to look back as we look forward. There were 3 tornadoes in the KC Metro area...2 of them lasted seconds...one was an EF1 in JOCO, KS that damaged some trees and school windows mostly.
It can happen...don't be complacent.