Getting lucky with storms

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Posts: 622
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2008 6:12 pm
Location: wisconsin

This week we had some pretty bad storms early Wednesday morning. Here is just one article on it I'm sure there are tons more if you want to google it, ... on-photos-. 14.2 million in damage just to residential structures which doesn't include the many businesses that were damaged or totaled. 5 confirmed tornados in the area and 86 MPH straight line winds. I woke up at 12:50 to the power going out and some crazy thunder and lightning. It was almost none stop, more of a roar then thunder because it was constant and the sky was as bright as could be with none stop lightning. Not much I could do so laid back down and after a while things calmed down and we feel back asleep. The power was out for a couple hours and then was back on when I got up. Went outside to survey the damage and to my surprise there was just some leaves and small twigs/branches laying all over, no real damage and not even any real branches. We even had two of those fold up camping chairs left outside from the night before that didn't even blow over which really amazed me. So I call mom to see how she was and part of a tree branch fell on her fence. So over to her house I go with the chainsaw. It wasn't a huge branch so was easily taken care of. Then off to menards to get some lumber and cement to replace some of the posts which were now leaning and some of the fence boards. Turns out 90% of the city she lives in with population around 75,000 was without power. We live in the town next to her. So menards has no power and running a generator with one checkout and only letting people in to get essentials. So we went to the other side of town and that store was open. This menards was without power for almost three days! Big chunks of the city were still without power until yesterday and there are still tons of power company trucks running around today. Some metal high wire towers that are main lines bent and crippled over. Some roads the power lines went down for almost a mile long stretch. Thursday and Friday they had some areas were there were 25-30 trucks working in one area. Also have trucks all over the city holding up power poles that were damaged but not all the way snapped. Pretty neat the come with a truck and clamp onto the pole and put it in position and just leave the truck so they can work on other areas and come back later to fix the pole right. Stop lights were off for days in some areas and some are still off. Times like this really show how many people rely solely on modern conveniences everyday day. When the stop lights are off you treat it as a four way stop, pretty simple concept but it proved to be very challenging for many people to figure out! Accidents all over and people just sitting at lights.

My chainsaw is just a cheaper poulan I bought about 10 years ago and while I've got every penny worth of the 100 or so bucks I paid for it I think it's at the end of it's life. I've been fixing it and keeping it running all this time but the next time this happens there will be a new chainsaw before any work gets done! Then my wheelbarrow that is about 6-7 years old, a nicer true temper from HD decided that the plastic tub wanted a crack in it for some reason. Not sure how or why it happened but it did. So now looking at a nicer Jackson metal tub wheelbarrow to replace this one. Also strongly considering spending the 170 bucks for the 3.5 cu ft cement mixer at HF. I only have one more post to set but after mixing 15 bags of concrete in my wheelbarrow by hand I don't think my back can handle those last 3 bags! Don't really want to spend the money on it since I will only use it maybe once a year if that but it sure would be nice for those times that it is needed and save my back. So this storm that we didn't get any damage from is getting to be pretty expensive for me! I think I underbid the job since the total bill I gave to mom was one case of beer.

The real point of this ramble, sorry sometimes my posts turn into story books!, is we have been extremely lucky the last couple of years with these storms. There is MAJOR damage just to the north, east, south, and west of us but missed us. About 4 blocks to our west it took over 20 trucks 3 days of working around the clock to get power back up. A half mile south and there were trees down all over. A mile north and metal power towers that they said are rated for 100-120 MPH winds got crinkled up. To the east more major damage. Seems like all around us was major damage but our folding camping chairs that usually blow over with a strong wind were still standing! This is the second time this year and once last year that major storms/tornados came threw the area and just missed us. Last year a tornado went right by us about a quarter to half mile away and only a branch came down. A campground got hit pretty bad this time with campers flipped upside down all over the place but luckily nobody got hurt. Just makes you wonder when our luck is going to run out and get a direct hit? Pretty thankful right now that everyone is alright and no real property damage other then mom's fence. I guess a new chainsaw, wheelbarrow, and a cement mixer are cheap in the big picture of what damage could have been.

Stay safe everyone!
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Posts: 5696
Joined: Wed Feb 28, 2007 8:01 pm
Location: Weedsport, NY

I know what you are dealing with about near misses. I was in the tree business for 20 years and have seen lots of damage from hurricanes, tornadoes and ice storms. I have seens houses cut in half by trees and the house and yard next door untouched as if it were a beautiful sunny day.

Here in the winter we have lake effect snow. one town may be getting pounded with snow rates of 6 inches /hr and the next town gets nothing.

"If I can't fix it, I can screw it up so bad no one else can either."
Posts: 67
Joined: Sun Jun 30, 2013 11:59 pm

You might want to use paragraphs it makes things easier to read. Every 4 of 5 sentences just start a new one.

About the storm, glad you and your family are okay.

It's scary and tornados are the scariest because you don't get much warning with them.

I'm gonna be moving into my first mobile home later this month and I'm in south Florida which is where many dangerous hurricanes land. It's just luck where it will hit or not, My MH is older and it's been here since the 70s as have a few others. When I bought it I was told that evacuations are mandatory even for a category 1, where people in homes or apartments would not need to leave for such a storm. Hopefully I never see a hurricane in the next 50 years but I bet one will sneak by but hopefully it will bypass my area.