Thursday, March 1, 2012

Why I am NOT excited about severe weather tomorrow

Secretary: Juan Crespo

I have seen many posts about some of my friends getting excited about the chance for storms tomorrow, and I don't blame them. As at atmospheric science major, it is exciting to see Mother Nature put on such a show for us. And even though I will be on a retreat this weekend and won't be able to even follow these storms, I was starting to get excited myself too, then I took the SPC Outlook and overlaid it with a population map:


In the purple shaded area, I can easily see 3-4 major cities, like Cincinnati and Louisville, even on the edge of that area I see larger cities, like Columbus and Indianapolis. Other major cities like Northern Atlanta and Southern Cleveland have a good chance of experiencing bad weather, which could lead to tornadoes like those seen in Harrisburg, IL just a few days ago.

Personally, I can't get excited about severe weather when I see such large populations at risk. Ever since last year, with the Alabama and Joplin tornadoes, to even the Indiana State Fair accident and the Harrisburg tornado, severe weather worries me and its affect on local populations. When more people die in 1 year from tornadoes than the amount of deaths combined the couple years before, it just sickens me the risk our population is at, and it sickens me more that even with the advances in meteorology, people still do not heed warnings and end up dying because of it.

Now, this doesn't mean I condemn storm chasing, we need storm spotters on the ground to help track the storm and observe properties that we may not be able to observe with modern day technology. Many of us get excited about the possibility of storm chasing, and I don't blame you or hold anything against you. It's just personally, I can no longer get excited when so many people are at risk at losing their lives.

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