“There it is! That’s a big tornado!”
Gary: Dozens of tornadoes struck Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska and Oklahoma spun off from a storm system so powerful forecasters began issuing high-risk warnings more than a day ahead of time. And those warnings are more dramatic to get people’s attention.
The weather service is now using words like “mass devastation”, “unsurvivable” and “catastrophic.”
“We want to make certain that we do every effort to make sure people receive those, can act on those and can make themselves safe.”
Gary: At least five people were killed this past weekend, all in the town of Woodward, Oklahoma. More than three dozen others were injured.
A hospital in Creston, Iowa was hit and 90 miles away, the entire town of Thurman was evacuated after a suspected tornado damaged three out of every four homes.
Reports of tornadoes also prompted officials to postpone the annual spring football game at the University of Nebraska.
It has already been an unusually active and deadly spring. It was the fourth deadliest March on record.
Twisters are blamed for at least 62 deaths this year, and the worst months for tornadoes are typically May and June.
There are worries that 2012 may be as bad or worse than 2011, the deadliest year for twisters in almost a century.
Scott, back to you.
- If the weather service is using words like “mass devastation,” “unsurvivable” and “catastrophic” to get people’s attention, what do you think the residents in those areas are thinking?