Monday, May 30, 2011

N MPLS Tornado

It was only a week ago that North Minneapolis was hit by a tornado. Minnesota is known for its tornados, but they are usually in the suburbs away from the metropolitan areas. We are about 10 minutes from downtown, so I never thought tornados would be an issue, until last Sunday.

I had taken Cider for a walk but was keeping my eye out on the very ominous sky. It seemed a distance away. However, within 10 minutes of our walk it had crept up very quickly. Cider and I hustled back to the house, thinking it was going to be a nasty thunderstorm. I turned on the tv to what I still consider crappy weather reporting and channel surfed, trying to find a station talking about the weather. I finally came across one that said we should expect 60 mph winds and large hail.

Alex had just walked into the kitchen from the garage commenting on the weather. I told him about the wind and hail and suggested he pull the cars into the garage. He agreed. After the door shut behind him the wind kicked up causing the rain to be horizontal, the tornado siren went off and the weather channel reported a tornado had touched down in St. Louis Park, about 15 minutes south of us. I ran to yell out to Alex but he was in the garage making room for the cars. (He had been cutting trim and painting doors for our bedroom.)

I literally threw Cider downstairs and was running around gathering the important things. Once Alex finally got inside, we went downstairs to listen to the weather together. The weatherman was tracking the tornado on the other side of 94 from us, about 15 minutes to the east of us. It wasn't until I received an email from my Aunt and talked to my parents that I understood the severity of the situation. When I checked the news it looked like an area to the southeast of us was hit pretty hard, about 10 minutes away. However, it wasn't until we drove downtown several days after the tornado that we realized the tornado was actually 5 minutes away directly east of us.

My heart sank to see all of the trees down, garages flattened and roofs ripped off of homes. People were milling about the streets and waiting in line at the food truck. The City of Minneapolis enforced a curfew at 9pm due to severe looting. People were driving up with trucks in front of homes and just taking what they wanted. It is very sad to hear how people take advantage of people at a time like this.

Here is a video of the damage done in North Minneapolis.

Fortunately, the only damage that was around us was a branch that fell from our backyard neighbors tree into our other backyard neighbors driveway.

Alex drove down the parkway and took video of the damage. The drive is a favorite of ours. You can now see the lakes which used to be hidden by trees.

There were not many images of the actual tornado posted on the internet. Probably because it came out of nowhere. I did come across this video that was filmed about 20 minutes southeast of us. I am overwhelmed by the size of the tornado and how it did not hit us.

There was no time to prepare for this tornado. No warning at all. Alex and I have both learned, that once you hear the siren, no matter what head for cover.

1 comment:

Kristan said...

WOW I had no idea it was so close to you guys! I guess I naively assumed it was in the suburbs too. :/ Soooo glad y'all are okay.

(Also, yeah, it's terrible how people act during times of tragedy here. I remember thinking how different, and dignified, the people of Japan were by comparison.)