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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Weather events in Howard County

     This week's tornado damage and loss of life in Oklahoma Monday is hard to comprehend when we live in an area that doesn't seem to be in a danger zone for weather events.  Sure Ellicott City gets flooded on a regular basis but there is usually sufficient notice of the flooding to minimize any loss of life or damage.  Our earthquake in 2011 was strong for this area but the minimal damage made it an interesting experience just to say we have experienced an earthquake.  We are far enough inland that most Atlantic hurricanes are just mild to moderate wind and rain events for Howard County.  As far as tornados go we rarely see anything that compares to what the Midwest gets every Spring.  An exception was the 2001 tornado when a couple of University of Maryland students from Howard County were killed at College Park when the car they were sitting in was picked up by a tornado that hit the campus.


     The 2011 image above of a developing tornado near Brookville down Route 108 was the only image in Google Images a tornado in our area.  I do remember a storm that produced a tornado that did some minor damage out along Folly Quarter Road back in the 1980's.  I searched the internet for some reference in the local press for that event but couldn't find any mention.  I did drive out to the area the day after to see the damage and it seemed very limited to some twisted trees and minor damage to a barn.  In Columbia the storm made a mess of our streets with small branches and leaves strewn around.

P.S.
     Just like in the Sandy Hook tragedy, yesterday we heard of teachers putting their lives at risk to save their students.  One teacher used her own body to shield her students in a school bathroom.  Once again it reminds us about the type of people who go into teaching and makes it such a noble profession.

P.S.1
   Tom Coale at HoCo Rising has proposed a "Wordbones Memorial Book Club"  as a way to remember Tale of Two Cities blogger Dennis Lane.  Tom proposed the first book for the book club to be "Timbuktu" by Paul Auster.  Read more about the proposed club.

P.S.
I wanted to include the weather information that Brent the Brewer added in one of the comments:

"Since 1986 there have been 9 tornado events in Howard County. The '86-'99 dataset is hard to pull data out of, so I can only give you dates the events occurred. They were:

08/28/1992 - 2 separate tornadoes
07/06/1995
08/27/1996

The '00 and forward database is easier to navigate. I can tell you the dates, locations, and strength:

07/10/2000 - Savage - F1
09/24/2001 - N. Laurel - F2
07/31/2009 - Alpha Ridge - EF1
06/01/2012 - Mt Airy - EF1
06/01/2012 - Scaggsville - EF0

So you are correct in that we don't get much in the way of the strong tornadoes that you tend to see in the midwest on an annual basis, but we still get strong tornadoes here in MD from time to time. In fact, since 2000 here in MD we've had 140 tornado events resulting in 5 deaths, 185 injuries, and $242.5 million in property damage. Who would have thought?!?!?"


2 comments:

Bill Crawford said...

I agree. The teaching profession is meant for those who are compassionate about their work as well as noble.

Ohio Plumbers

Brent The Brewer said...

Post a story that talks about weather and you know I'm going to respond. Good work Duane! :)

Being that my job is to keep track of severe and extreme weather events around the US, I have some stats to share with you that you might find interesting.

Since 1986 there have been 9 tornado events in Howard County.

The '86-'99 dataset is hard to pull data out of, so I can only give you dates the events occurred. They were:

08/28/1992 - 2 separate tornadoes
07/06/1995
08/27/1996

The '00 and forward database is easier to navigate. I can tell you the dates, locations, and strength:

07/10/2000 - Savage - F1
09/24/2001 - N. Laurel - F2
07/31/2009 - Alpha Ridge - EF1
06/01/2012 - Mt Airy - EF1
06/01/2012 - Scaggsville - EF0

So you are correct in that we don't get much in the way of the strong tornadoes that you tend to see in the midwest on an annual basis, but we still get strong tornadoes here in MD from time to time. In fact, since 2000 here in MD we've had 140 tornado events resulting in 5 deaths, 185 injuries, and $242.5 million in property damage. Who would have thought?!?!?

Anyways, I thought you and your readers might be interested in some data.

Cheers!
-Brent