Sunday, February 10, 2008

Tornado warnings considered in U.S. south

Associated Press: After the deadliest wave of tornadoes to hit the South in more than two decades, dazed authorities and residents are wondering what could be done differently next time. There will be new interest in tornado sirens in places like Macon County, which has none and suffered 14 deaths, and consideration of other changes there and elsewhere across tornado-prone areas of the South. Officials cite strong storm awareness and disaster drills with helping Union University, in Jackson, Tenn., avoid loss of life as tornadoes roared through last week.

Sirens and long advance times in warnings that were repeatedly broadcast also helped prevent higher losses of life — the total as of Friday was 59 — from the powerful set of storms that included a ground-hugging tornado that roared across northern Tennessee with wind estimated at 125 top 150 mph. That twister was blamed for 24 for the deaths.

The most effective preparation for the next storm could be a healthy dose of fear triggered by lingering images of this month's disaster....

Tornado photo by Scott Smith, NOAA, Wikimedia Commons

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