Tuesday, July 03, 2012

91 mph winds = derecho

Apparently we had a 'Derecho' last Friday. Some people were saying we had a tornado, some just called it straight-line winds, some called it a land hurricane... but this article says it was a derecho. Never heard the term before, but whatever it was, it did a number in Fort Wayne.

Jane and I actually weren't home at the time, but we drove through it on our way to my parent's house. We were driving through Valparaiso, IN on Friday (around noon) and it looked like we were headed into a black hole. It was extremely dark, then the wind started blowing, then the rains came... it was a bit insane. We finally pulled into a gas station because I couldn't see to drive, and all the power went out in town. We only sat there 5 or 10 minutes and it let up. Then it cleared off nicely. A few hours later, though, and Carrie called to say the same storm struck Fort Wayne.

There were trees and power lines down all over the city. Over 100,000 lost power. As of today there are still around 40,000 without power. Some streets are still closed. Power company workers have been called in from neighboring states to try to help restore things to normal. It was/is a mess.

We didn't know if we had power all weekend or not. It wasn't until we pulled in the drive and opened the garage door that we felt a sense of relief at having power. And it doesn't look like we ever lost it. We also just had some limbs and things down in the yard - nothing serious. Many in our neighborhood are still without power, and had trees come down. You can hear generators running all over the place.

Drew and Carrie didn't have any damage other than a limb broke off the drivers side rearview mirror on their SUV. They still don't have power though. They're hoping maybe today yet, or tomorrow, but I guess some will not be getting it back until Saturday. They're staying with us in the mean time. [Note: they got their power back on Wednesday morning]

I guess the church lost power for awhile, but it was back by Sunday morning. They went ahead and cancelled service this past Sunday anyway though. The port-a-potty was tipped over and a few shingles blown off, but otherwise it looked like things were ok.

I just can't imagine those towns decimated by tornadoes... this was bad enough for me. 91 mph winds is pretty serious. I hope that doesn't happen again.