The October 13-14 Severe Weather Outbreak In Alabama / Georgia


Geek Alabama Weather Alert

We are already seeing severe storms with heavy winds move north through Central Alabama.  Now, most of Central and North Alabama is under a tornado watch until 12 am midnight.  Expect to see the watch more eastward.

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So, here is what to expect.  A strong storm system is currently moving through the southeast.  The storm system has a squall line with extremely high winds ahead of a cold front.  As of 5 pm Central, the squall line is in Central Mississippi, and moving East.  The Storm Prediction Center has issued a moderate risk for severe weather for North Mississippi and West Alabama, this will move eastward as well.

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As for timings, the squall line will enter West Alabama this evening.  It will move through Alabama during the overnight hours.  It should exit Alabama and move into Georgia around the early morning hours of Tuesday.  The squall line will have high winds, heavy rain, hail, and a possibility of an embedded tornado.  The main worry is if supercell storms form ahead of the squall line, which could bring high winds and tornadoes, that is already happening.

Before the squall line and supercell storms get into NE Alabama / NW Georgia, winds will be gusty.  We are under a wind advisory.  And after the storms, we could deal with some flooding problems.  The storms and severe weather will be gone by Tuesday afternoon.  Temps will drop, and it will feel like Fall again!  Here is the official timeline from the National Weather Service in Birmingham.  You could see these times be moved up!

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The bottomline, expect to see storms with strong winds and heavy rain!  A tornado is not out of the question.  Since this event will happen during the overnight hours here in NE Alabama / NW Georgia, you need to have a way to wake yourself up if a weather warning is issued.  Have a NOAA weather radio or a weather app on your smartphone that can alert you and wake you up when severe weather arrives in your area.  Do not rely on outdoor sirens!  Also, make sure your phone is fully charged before the storms arrive in your area!

By Tuesday night, the storms will be gone, and the weather will be awesome for the next 5-7 days!  Here is my map below!

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Follow Nathan Young on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/nvyoung and on Twitter @nvyoung for weather updates!

Crowdsourcing Mornings: The Sirens Project


Geek Alabama Crowdsourcing Mornings

This is Crowdsourcing Mornings! This post takes place every weekday morning and highlights one crowdsourcing project I liked from Kickstarter, Indiegogo, or other crowdsourcing websites.

The purpose of The Sirens Project is to provide meteorologists and engineers with valuable surface data inside of tornadoes that will lead to more reliable warnings and structures. To show the immense applications that unmanned aerial vehicles posses is another aspect of this research project.  To achieve this, they will be using specially designed and equipped UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) in order to probe the tornado for valuable information.  Their UAVs are coupled with a sensor package that is able to record barometric pressure, temperature, and relative humidity. Each data point will be related to a specific GPS coordiante, including elevation.

In turn, a 3-Dimensional representation of the sensor package inside the tornado will be rendered. This will allow meteorologists and engineers to essentially have access to the first MRI of a tornado.  Their UAV design is based off of a deltawing style aircraft. This will allow them to reach high speeds while maintaining necessary control in high wind environments.  A long range FPV (First Person View) system will allow them to safely deploy their sensor package from several miles away. The electronics of the sensor package are surrounded by a thick polycarbonate case, allowing for great impact resistance as well as superb electrical transmission. The sensor package acts much like the “black box” on a commercial airliner. It is designed to survive the harsh environment inside the tornado even if the UAV does not.

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As of October 13th, this project has raised around $3,800 of their $10,000 goal. This project only has 23 days left to raise the $10,000 or it will not be funded!  For a pledge of $5, you will get five incredible high resolution The Sirens Project related desktop backgrounds.  For a pledge of $40, you will get an EF-5 sized thank you from The Sirens Project, five high resolution desktop backgrounds, “Sirens Project” vinyl window sticker, project T-shirt, and their documentary film.  To learn more and to pledge money, go to:  https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1517270439/the-sirens-project-uav-tornado-research

Incredible Videos And Pictures From The 2014 Nebraska Tornado Outbreak


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What a day in weather.  Today, a major tornado outbreak occurred in Nebraska.  Twin tornadoes struck the town of Pilger Nebraska.  And the damage was extensive!  So below, here are some of the best pictures and videos from the twin tornadoes today.

The April 27-30 Severe Weather Outbreak In The Southeast


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This week, the southeast experienced a major severe weather outbreak.  There were multiple reports of tornadoes, damaging winds, large hail, and severe flooding.  Things got started on Sunday in Arkansas when a powerful EF4 tornado tore through Mayflower and Vilonia Arkansas.  Extreme damage was caused.

On Monday, a lot of tornadoes struck across Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, and other states.  Here are some damage pictures on Twitter and some amazing tornado videos.

On Wednesday, major flooding took place along the Alabama and NW Florida Gulf Coasts.  The area got 15-25 inches of rain in 24 hours, and that is going to cause major flooding.  Many roads were washed out, rivers rose to record flooding levels, and many homes received flood damage.  Remember, if the road ahead of you is covered with water, turn around and don’t drown!

At the end, some had a little fun with James Spann!

So, the people in Alabama and the southeast will need our help!  Volunteers have been out in the damage zones clearing damage since the storms struck.  If you can not volunteer, you can still help!  You can send money to the American Red Cross or The Salvation Army to help with the relief effort. To donate to the American Red Cross, donate online by clicking here. Or donate $10 by texting the word “REDCROSS” to 90999. For donations to The Salvation Army, donate online by clicking here. Or donate $10 by texting the word “STORM” to 80888.

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Weather Alert: The April 28-29 Severe Weather Event


Geek Alabama Weather Alert

Before I talk about what is going to happen on Monday and Tuesday in Alabama and the southeast, let me say this.  This severe weather event will be nothing like the April 27th tornado outbreak in 2011.  That day, we had 60+ tornadoes and over 1000 miles of tornado tracks.  Yes, I think there will be tornadoes, some long track.  Yes, there will be some damage, but this is nothing like April 27th!  I know some people are scared, but don’t be!  Make sure you have a way to get the weather warnings when it happens in your area.  And when the warning happens, get in your safe place!

On Monday and Tuesday April 28-29, Alabama and the southeast is going to see some severe weather.  On both days, there will be severe storms that could have damaging winds, large hail, heavy rains that cause flooding, and yes, a few tornadoes is possible.  On the Monday threat, the biggest threat for the bigger severe storms will be over central and northern Mississippi and northwest Alabama.  A PDS tornado watch has already been issued, and this area is under a moderate risk for severe weather.  Timing for the storms is from mid-afternoon through late night Monday.  And everyone in Alabama will have a chance to see severe weather!

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For the Tuesday threat, a moderate risk has already been issued for most of Alabama and Mississippi.  The only question mark is how strong the storms will be on Tuesday.  The atmosphere could be worked over from the Monday storms, and that could limit the storms for Tuesday.  But with the moderate risk already issued for much of Alabama on Tuesday, I think there is still a severe weather event on Tuesday.  And the storms could contain damaging winds, large hail, heavy rain and flooding, and a few tornadoes.  The timing will be around mid-afternoon and lasting through late night Tuesday.

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So yes, there will be two rounds of severe weather on Monday and Tuesday, both rounds could contain severe storms that can cause damage.  This setup will be nothing like the major April 27th outbreak we saw a few years ago, but it only takes one severe storm causing damage to your property to make it your own April 27th.  So, expect to see some storms on Monday and Tuesday that could be severe, here is my call map for both days.

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Stay up to date with me on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/nvyoung and on Twitter @Nvyoung. Here are some great tips to make sure you are prepared for severe weather.

  • Check your weather radios and make sure that they work. DO NOT DEPEND ON SIRENS TO ALERT YOU REGARDING TORNADOES. SOME MAY BE RAIN WRAPPED AND CANNOT BE SEEN! You also may not hear a siren in some areas, or if you are indoors. Be sure your weather radio has new, good, back up batteries.
  • Keep a close watch on current weather conditions. Pay attention to local weather, news, and social media sources. *Find your local NWS page, like it, follow it, set it for notifications, etc.
  • You can get wireless emergency alerts (WEA) on your cell phone, without having to use an app. These are sent to affected areas, and look like a text message. There is an audible alarm when they are sent also. Charge all of your cell phones and if you have back up batteries, charge those too. Locate your car chargers and have them ready- that may be the only way that you can charge your phone.
  • Make sure you have a portable radio with good batteries.
  • If you have a generator-fill it with gas, and have extra gas on hand, stored safely in proper gasoline containers. Check your generator to make sure it is running properly. Know how to operate your generator safely, and NEVER have it indoors. It must have proper ventilation or you can die from carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Fill up your cars with gas.
  • Find the lowest, most interior, small room in your home- closet, bathroom, hallway, interior rooms with no windows, under the stairs- and do a run through of what you will do if severe weather occurs.
  • Have a safety plan. Know that if a tornado is in your area where you will go- GET TO YOUR SAFE PLACE. Either get in your basement or in the smallest closet on the lowest floor- or an interior hallway. We have seen numerous people survive in a bathtub with a mattress over them.
  • Have your kids practice until they automatically know where to go and what to do in case of a tornado emergency.
  • We cannot stress enough-those of you who live in mobile homes-have a plan to be somewhere safe. Your mobile home is not safe!
  • Have your helmets in your safe place. Protecting your head and neck is critical. Also have cushions, blankets, pillows, etc, to cover your head and neck.
  • Wear a whistle or air horn if you have one, it can alert rescuers to your location.
  • Make sure that everyone is wearing shoes. Flip flops and sandals are not recommended as safe footwear. (At night, make sure shoes are in your safe place and have everyone put them on).
  • If you are in a restaurant, grocery store, or gas station/convenience store for any reason, and a tornado comes through- get in the cooler- it will save your life. If you are in your vehicle, look for one of these types of places to get inside and get in the walk in cooler.
  • **NEVER try to outrun a tornado in a car and do not seek shelter under overpasses.
  • Get some cash together if you can and put it ON YOUR BODY. Have ID, Social Security Cards, debit/credit, and insurance cards ON YOUR BODY.
  • Have a list of your prescriptions, and put your medications in a Ziploc bag- all together with you- in your shirt if you have to.
  • If you have a child or adult who wears diapers, have some, along with baby wipes, in your emergency kit.
  • Have extra bottles, powdered formula, and bottled water for infants who still drink formula in your emergency kit.
  • You can use a plastic tote to keep items needed in a weather emergency ready to go. You can include canned food and a can opener, bottled water, pet food, bug spray, sunscreen, gloves, flashlights, tarps, personal hygiene kit, cleaning products, and more.
  • Have a plan for your pets as well. Have ID on your pets. If you don’t have a tag with your info…put it on duct tape on their collar and write your name with a permanent marker with your contact info and address.
  • Have a plan for how to contact family members and friends before, during, and afterwards. Texting is probably best, and you can use social media also. If you are not going to be in your home, let someone know. You can also let someone know exactly “where” in your home you are taking shelter.
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