Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

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Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Thu Apr 28, 2011 10:20 am



Southern storms: 'I don't know how anyone survived'


April 28, 2011 10:12 a.m. EDT

(CNN) -- Daylight illuminated a scene of utter devastation across many areas of the South Thursday, following storms of near-epic proportions that killed at least 202 people in six states.

The vast majority of fatalities occurred in Alabama, where as many as 149 people perished, although Gov. Robert Bentley told reporters Thursday there were 131 confirmed deaths.

http://www.cnn.com/2011/US/04/28/severe.weather/index.html?hpt=T1&iref=BN1
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Thu Apr 28, 2011 10:26 am

I think Tuscaloosa has been wiped off the map. I've never seen such a huge tornado. Prayers to all of those that have lost loved ones and those that have been injured throughout the trail of devastation and destruction from these storms.
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by pi-girl on Thu Apr 28, 2011 10:45 am

Thanks for sharing, Piper! That video is awesome.

While at my brothers in Arkansas on Monday, we spent about 2 hours in shelters. There were 3 different storms with tornadoes throughout the afternoon/evening. Luckily his town wasn't hit, but the surrounding area didn't fare as well.

My prayers are with all of those affected in Tuscaloosa and everywhere else that was hit.

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Julie on Thu Apr 28, 2011 11:17 am

These storms were brutal, and my heart goes out to all of these people.

On TWC this morning, Jim Cantore (I think he's great!) was saying that due to the magnitude of the tornados in AL, that even getting in that inner closet or in your basement wouldn't have saved you. That is scary!!!

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Sherry on Thu Apr 28, 2011 11:52 am

Oh my! The death toll has more than doubled this a.m. from last night. Those were wicked tornadoes and its already being said that 2011 is the worst year for tornadoes in history. Wow.

My prayers to all the victims and their families. I also pray it wont take long for the restoration of homes and schools.
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Thu Apr 28, 2011 12:06 pm

Oh my goodness, PI! You were in the thick of it! I'm glad everyone is okay.

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Sherry on Thu Apr 28, 2011 12:49 pm

Here is Nightline's Show on the Tornadoes (its the first story):

http://abcnews.go.com/watch/nightline/SH5584743/VD55124156/nightline-427-tornadoes-in-alabama

There is another one from the the night of the 26th, too, in that link.
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:03 pm

Thanks Sherry!

Here's an interactive map of where tornadoes were spotted...unreal!

http://www.cnn.com/interactive/2011/04/weather/map.google.980.severe.weather/index.html?hpt=T1

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Sherry on Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:11 pm

YW!

Whoa, there's a gazillion tornado symbols on that map! affraid
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Julie on Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:43 pm

Thanks for the map Piper.

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Julie on Thu Apr 28, 2011 3:00 pm

Julie wrote:These storms were brutal, and my heart goes out to all of these people.

On TWC this morning, Jim Cantore (I think he's great!) was saying that due to the magnitude of the tornados in AL, that even getting in that inner closet or in your basement wouldn't have saved you. That is scary!!!

Forgot to mention, Jim Cantore also said you'd actually have to be underground in order to survive that tornado.

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by pi-girl on Thu Apr 28, 2011 4:41 pm

Underground is definitely better! (Unless it springs a leak...see below!)

The first pic below is where we went for the first round of the tornadoes that hit in Arkansas. It is underground. There were 13 people, 3 dogs and one cat in there. We spent about an hour down there.

The second time, the underground cellar was full, so we had to go out of town a few miles to one that is above ground and quite a bit smaller - the second photo is that one - you can see how tiny it is if you look close, you can see the back of the room. There were 11 people and 4 dogs in this one. EXTREMELY cramped!!! And, if a tornado had actually hit, I'm not sure this cellar would have been enough shelter. (It is also very short - that is my brother standing outside of it (he's a little over 6' tall - we all had to stand inside, hunched over. I am 5'7" and still had to stand bent over.) We were in there for almost an hour also.

The third photo below is the first shelter that we were in. Sometime during the third round of sirens, this shelter sprung a leak and flooded from all the hard rains. Luckily, there wasn't a tornado and everyone had time to get out!







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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Sherry on Thu Apr 28, 2011 6:19 pm

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110428/ap_on_re_us/us_severe_weather
Tornadoes devastate South, killing at least 280

Some of the worst damage was about 50 miles southwest of Pleasant Grove in Tuscaloosa, a city of more than 83,000 that is home to the University of Alabama. A tower-mounted news camera there captured images of an astonishingly thick, powerful tornado flinging debris as it leveled neighborhoods.

That twister and others Wednesday were several times more severe than a typical tornado, which is hundreds of yards wide, has winds around 100 mph and stays on the ground for a few miles, said research meteorologist Harold Brooks at the Storm Prediction Center.

"There's a pretty good chance some of these were a mile wide, on the ground for tens of miles and had wind speeds over 200 mph," he said.

Brooks said the tornado that struck Tuscaloosa could be an EF5 — the strongest category of tornado, with winds of more than 200 mph — and was at least the second-highest category, an EF4.

Search and rescue teams fanned out to dig through the rubble of devastated communities that bore eerie similarities to the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, when town after town lay flattened for nearly 90 miles.

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Thu Apr 28, 2011 7:04 pm

Holy moly, pi! I pictured you in a school or something. Not in a real underground shelter like that! My goodness! Talk about taking cover. What did you guys do? Worry, talk, try to laugh a little? Did you have water and snacks, whiskey for nerves? Did you still have cell phone ability, or a radio?

The flooded cellar is really scary, in heavy rains that could happen so quickly and possibly trap you in. Thank goodness you were all able to be sheltered in safety and no one was hurt.

Thank you so much for sharing. Nature rules and we are at it's mercy when it comes to something like this. I'm watching the news now, and my heart goes out to these people. Those that are left have nothing, but are so very lucky to have their lives. Prayers to those that lost loved ones... Sad
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Julie on Thu Apr 28, 2011 9:22 pm

PI - that is tiny. There sure were a lot of people in there, and I'm glad it was safe outside when you had to evacuate due to the leak.

Maybe I watch TWC too much, but during one of these storms in April, a family was in a storm shelter and as the tornado was going through, it yanked the 8 inch cement slab off of the top of the shelter. From what I remember, the people inside weren't harmed.

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by pi-girl on Thu Apr 28, 2011 10:54 pm

Piper wrote:Holy moly, pi! I pictured you in a school or something. Not in a real underground shelter like that! My goodness! Talk about taking cover. What did you guys do? Worry, talk, try to laugh a little? Did you have water and snacks, whiskey for nerves? Did you still have cell phone ability, or a radio?

Well, we didn't know anyone except my brother - I think he knew about 1/2 of the people. We made a lot of small talk. One lady had moved back to Arkansas from Florida. She wanted to be the one who got to be interviewed when the news came (which they never did). I told her that we could go ahead and interview her on our cell phones and send it in to the tv station :) Her nephew was visiting from Florida, so it was pretty exciting for him. We didn't have any water or snacks, but I did take my laptop and new Canon camera! Cell phones worked great in the first shelter, but not at all in the tiny one. One guy in that one had a smart phone and kept opening the door so it would work.

Piper wrote:The flooded cellar is really scary, in heavy rains that could happen so quickly and possibly trap you in. Thank goodness you were all able to be sheltered in safety and no one was hurt.

Thank you so much for sharing. Nature rules and we are at it's mercy when it comes to something like this. I'm watching the news now, and my heart goes out to these people. Those that are left have nothing, but are so very lucky to have their lives. Prayers to those that lost loved ones... Sad

I'm glad the flood happened after the storm was over! It would have been quite interesting if that had happened with everyone down there!

Nature certainly does rule. I am very glad we were lucky and didn't get hit. The videos and pics of the tornadoes and damage they caused are awful! There were too many who lost their lives. My prayers go out to all of the families. Sad

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Julie on Fri Apr 29, 2011 9:36 am


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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by pi-girl on Fri Apr 29, 2011 12:50 pm

What a somber picture, Julie. Thanks for sharing it and the article.

Makes a person realize that we can't take these storms for granted. Sad

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Fri Apr 29, 2011 1:50 pm

That is heartbreaking. I've been trying to find ways to help. I saw this morning our area Red Cross is trying to recruit 200 nurses to deploy to the worst hit areas. They're even telling people from TN to not enter AL without a tank full of gas because the pumps that are left are not working. Where are all of the homeless victims staying? They need clothes, shoes....everything! They've lost it all.
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Julie on Fri Apr 29, 2011 2:04 pm

On TWC, they said to check with the local police in the area that you want to help, and they would be able to tell you how they can use your certain "talents". Otherwise, I think for food and clothes, they are recommending donating money to the Red Cross.
Also, Jim Cantore said yesterday that the damage he has seen in AL, is equivalent to the damage he saw from Hurricane Katrina. He called this a "Katrina inland".

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Fri Apr 29, 2011 3:06 pm

After Katrina hit, one of my former co-workers asked for hot dogs, buns, bottled water, non-perishable food, clothes, shoes, blankets, personal needs items, candles, lighters, first aid kits.. etc for her church. She and other church members drove down and took the items in themselves. She said people were set up in camps while trying to clear their properties and they went from camp to camp because many of them had not been reached by the Red Cross or had lost their vehicles and had no transportation. They took a ton of supplies, every little bit helps. It's difficult to imagine how much is needed to help these people.
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Julie on Fri Apr 29, 2011 3:48 pm

Piper, that was a really great thing your co-worker did. I bet the people were very appreciative of every bit of help given. I know I'd be very thankful, and very appreciative that outsiders cared.



Update:
Twister death toll 318; most since 1932 outbreak
(AP) – 37 minutes ago

Read article:
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gwJTIxeUWZizZWADgvTCGRhnRpiA?docId=5431c50bec974f00bf5d68f67d174739

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Fri Apr 29, 2011 4:02 pm

It's a good feeling to know you can help out a little. She was a little scared, but they had men from church with them as well. You know all the looting and stuff that was going on. She said once they got in with the people in need, they were so gracious and they never felt as if they were in danger. My neighbor used to volunteer for the Red Cross and would be deployed in disasters. She said it was hard work, you can really be put in dangerous situations at times, but not always.

Oh my.......318 Sad
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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Julie on Fri Apr 29, 2011 5:00 pm

Lots of personal stories within the article:

Twister deaths now at 318, worst since 1932
'Never seen devastation like this,' Obama says; body bag shortage in one Ala. town


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42813800/ns/weather/?GT1=43001

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Re: Death Toll Soars In Southern Storms

Post by Piper on Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:45 pm

Horrific, just horrific......... Sad
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