My Experience With a Tornado Essay Example
Most of us have “been under” a weather watch or warning. However, how many of us have actually faced a tornado? A tornado creates a scary experience for the ones involved. The conditions must be just right for formation of a tornado, and it is very upsetting to live through one.
It was a warm and muggy day, and a cold front was in the area along with upper atmosphere cold pockets to promote severe weather. These elements (lift and destabilization) need to exist for tornado development. Living in the middle of “tornado alley” and the related weather features contributed to these conditions, along with growing my interest. However, I remained inspired to care for and protect my family. I felt guilty for wanting tornado development. I knew that if tornadoes did occur, there would probably be damage to people’s property. My two children and wife did not share my feelings of excitement.
I had anticipated such a situation many times before, and always felt disappointed by the outcome. Looking back, I feel guilty for calling it “disappointment”, though it is from a valid but different viewpoint. The same types of watches and warnings were issued many times before without results. I guess that is the nature of probability. Warning sirens started to blare, but because I heard them many times before, I didn’t pay too much attention to them. It was like the boy who cried “wolf” one too many times. However, my adrenaline level rose and I started to get excited. Reacting to the sirens, I made sure my family was safe in an inner room closet. I then headed out the front door to watch the clouds. I then spotted a circulation which was unlike any circulation I had seen before. I had observed broad rotation before; however, this rotation was tight and looked ominous.
When I first saw the funnel, it writhed just slightly northwest of my house. Ironically, when I first saw the funnel, it was over the National Weather Service Severe weather forecast office in Norman, which was only a quarter-mile from me. The funnel was close enough to me and turned so that I could see into it. I couldn’t believe I was actually looking into a forming tornado. For reasons I can’t explain, I then ran to the back door to see what was happening there. Just as the sun peeked out in my backyard, a swirl developed which was about the size of my back yard. This swirl contained many slivers of dead grass (from last year’s clippings) from my backyard. They were being sucked up into the developing vortex. It is very strange how our minds can remember in slow motion what happened in real time very quickly. Our neighbor’s yard was the first one to sustain damage to their fence. The tornado kept skipping from house to house toward the northeast.
After all this “excitement” I noticed the sirens had stopped, although I’m not sure when they did stop. My adrenaline, however, took a while to wane. My wife thought I was nuts for getting so excited about what could have possibly killed us. However, my family and I then drove around to survey the damage which was to houses and fences and the “fun center” (go carts, etc.) that my boys liked was destroyed. I have always been interested in the weather, especially severe weather… The more severe, the more adrenaline.
This was a small tornado (EF-0), but the power of this small tornado still amazes me. I also learned even more about probability and how even a small probability event can and does happen: I just got “to enjoy” this one.