Sunday, August 3, 2014

Insight - Tornado warnings in Maine? - By Michelle Libby

Holy cow! I can’t believe that on Monday we received a weather alert that said that there was a tornado warning and we should seek shelter immediately. 
We don’t get these warnings here. We live in Maine! Snow storms are our thing, not tornadoes.
So we got this warning and what do most of us do? Go out to look for the funnel cloud. 

I stood in my second floor office and paused right after I got the alert. What the heck am I supposed to do in a building with no cellar, and was it the right or left back corner we’re supposed to hide in so they can find us after our building is destroyed. 

How long does it take a tornado to get here? 

I ran downstairs and checked in with everyone. Instead of hiding, we got online to see what was really going on. Then I saw a few people out looking at the clouds in the direction of Standish, where we heard a funnel cloud was spotted. 

We ran outside and took pictures of the swirling clouds. Or at least I did. 

In the back of my mind, I was still nervous. I checked in with my whole family and with my daughter who was more in the direct line with the storm. All were well and hunkered down. 

When the warning expired, I think we all breathed a sigh of relief. Luckily no one was injured and the damage was minimal. 

Is this going to become more common weather in our area? What is creating this phenomenon? 

Whatever it is, I don’t like it. Thunderstorms are one thing, but a weather storm that makes us hide in our basements…I’d ask Mother Nature for a recount on that one.  

My son said, “Well you probably won’t want to see that movie now. You know the one with the big tornado.” 

“Oh, no I still want to see it. It fascinates me,” I told him. I think that if I hadn’t caught the writing bug, I would have been a meteorologist because of my interest in big storms. 

But alas, we are all well until the next emergency warning. Stay safe and listen to directions. The safest place is not outside looking for the storm.

-Michelle Libby

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