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Discussion of April 27, 2011 Outbreak (2 Viewers)


WesL

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I was noticing the same thing when I was entering the data. Pretty dramatic drop especially from N Alabama.
 

WesL

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The live portion of the 4/27 thread will end just after midnight. We are now recruiting 3 volunteers to finish inputting the remainder of the 30 pages of content. The TW archive team would also be responsible for bringing back other archived content as well. PM me if you are interested.
 
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MichelleH

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Yeah I would venture to say that at least 85-90% of people north of I-20 didn't have power after 7 or 8 that night. Mine went out right after the TCL-BHM tornado went through Fultondale.
Mine went out with the morning round of storms and didn't come back until 8 days later. I didn't have Internet on my cell phone then, so all I had to keep me informed during the outbreak was a small AM/FM radio. To say I was going crazy is an understatement!
 

pritchlaw

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My neighborhood at Mountain Woods Lake in SW Blount County was hit by an EF-2 in the early round of storms (about 6 am). By the time the second round started that afternoon, our neighborhood was without power and we were all cleaning up and had roofers out writing up estimates for everybody. I think there were 6 houses destroyed in all. One of my neighbors was running his tv and refrigerator on a generator and we were outside cutting up trees in the road when somebody yelled for us to come inside and look on tv. It was the Tuscaloosa tornado on 33/40 tower cam. Terrifying. We were without power for 3 days I think.

Watching the 33/40 live feed on YouTube, there was never even a tornado warning for the storm that hit us. It was just a segment of that line that spun up a decent tornado in North Jefferson County near Warrior and it passed into Blount and went right down the western side of Mountain Woods Lake.
 
I would like to know if there were any deaths caused that afternoon that can be directly tied to the power going out during the morning storms. That is, did anyone not get the warnings, that normally would have if the power were on, and die as a result of that?

I guess there is no way to know that, but it would be interesting to know.
 

warneagle

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I would like to know if there were any deaths caused that afternoon that can be directly tied to the power going out during the morning storms. That is, did anyone not get the warnings, that normally would have if the power were on, and die as a result of that?

I guess there is no way to know that, but it would be interesting to know.
Considering that several violent tornadoes (e.g. Hackleburg) tracked through areas without NOAA weather radio and power, it's almost certain some did. No way to prove it though.
 

Equus

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The morning storms' destruction of the power grid and warning dissemination infrastructure, combined with the incredible intensity, forward speed, and town-striking nature of the evening tornadoes, made 4/27 pretty close to as perfect a tornado disaster here as we can expect in the high tech era. Having death tolls akin to the 1932 outbreak, and in AL vastly greater than the 1974 event, is something that just should not happen with how advanced forecasting and warning is now.

Then again, with a few of the tornadoes being so intense that even being in an interior room on the lowest level doesn't allow survival, perhaps it shouldn't be quite as surprising... population density increase may have reversed the historical downward trend of tornado fatalities.
 

ARCC

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As bad as it was it could have been sooooo much worse. For instance swap the Tuscaloosa and Hackleburg tornadoes. As hard as we were hit the tornadoes did not hit the main metro areas.
 

Equus

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Well, yeah, that and send the aforementioned Hackleoosa tornado right thru the Birmingham metro and another through Huntsville metro (both came pretty close in reality honestly) but the infrastructure damage and storm speed were more of a perfect storm than the actual storms.

I mean, in the evening round, we got light sprinkles twice and that was it; had the Hubbertville EF3 been one of the long trackers it would've probably hit us. Coulda certainly been worse from an individual track viewpoint.
 

Helicity

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Well, yeah, that and send the aforementioned Hackleoosa tornado right thru the Birmingham metro and another through Huntsville metro (both came pretty close in reality honestly) but the infrastructure damage and storm speed were more of a perfect storm than the actual storms.

I mean, in the evening round, we got light sprinkles twice and that was it; had the Hubbertville EF3 been one of the long trackers it would've probably hit us. Coulda certainly been worse from an individual track viewpoint.
Checking the tornado path, it is incredible to me that the Hackleburg tornado skirted around the Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant and also managed to weave in between the major urban areas of Athens, Decatur, and Huntsville. Had the tornado's path been a little farther to the north or south (such as following the 565 corridor), things could have indeed been much worse, at least in the northern part of the state.

Additionally, the supercell that managed not to catch up with the Hackleburg parent cell (as discussed in the main thread at a certain point) did itself spawn a few relatively weak tornadoes that impacted Madison and other areas just outside of Huntsville. Thankfully this cell ended up getting squeezed between the Hackleburg parent and Smithville parent cells.
 

akt1985

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This event was exceptional for not only Alabama but Tennessee as well, especially the eastern part of the state. Was 4/27/11 the biggest number of tornadoes in one day for Tennessee? It was interesting the Eastern part of the state that got hit instead of western and middle Tennessee as Eastern Tennessee has all those mountains.
 
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As bad as it was it could have been sooooo much worse. For instance swap the Tuscaloosa and Hackleburg tornadoes. As hard as we were hit the tornadoes did not hit the main metro areas.
Or put the Enterprise/Rose Hill, MS tornado through the Jackson metro. Interestingly enough it was second only to the Hackleburg tornado in the fatality to injury ratio (about 41%, which is much higher than average even for a violent tornado). Seven lives lost was seven too many, but it was darn lucky that the tornado was over very rural areas for almost all of its path.
 

Tennie

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And while we're on the subject of "what-ifs", consider this:

I seem to recall, on the old board's thread for the event on April 15, 2011, that one of the last posts (probably the last post) was about how that event could have been much worse had the morning round of storms not rained themselves out over much of northern Alabama. That post was made before 4/27/11.

That had me thinking: What if the morning storms on 4/15 had behaved more like those on 4/27 (i.e. not doing much to defuse the afternoon event, and in some ways even making things worse)? Would we be discussing the fact that we had two generational events within as many weeks of each other?:eek:
 
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And while we're on the subject of "what-ifs", consider this:

I seem to recall, on the old board's thread for the event on April 15, 2011, that one of the last posts (probably the last post) was about how that event could have been much worse had the morning round of storms not rained themselves out over much of northern Alabama. That post was made before 4/27/11.

That had me thinking: What if the morning storms on 4/15 had behaved more like those on 4/27 (i.e. not doing much to defuse the afternoon event, and in some ways even making things worse)? Would we be discussing the fact that we had two generational events within as many weeks of each other?:eek:
Well, that's a thought...even as it was 4/15 would obviously be considered a very major event in any other year, but the idea of two "Super Outbreaks" in two weeks is chilling.

I think it was Max from Extreme Planet who first talked about this, but "Super Outbreaks" might be much more common than a lot of us tend to think. 4/3/74 was called a "once in 500 year event" by many, many respected meteorologists including Fujita and Grazulis. Then 4/27/11 happened, and then when you consider the 3/21/32 Dixie Alley outbreak, which was almost certainly much bigger than official records say (since there were no confirmed F0 or F1 tornadoes). I also find it doubtful that of the 10+ violent tornadoes on that day there were none of F5 strength, especially considering how the damage from three of them was probably borderline F5.

Considering that reliable tornado records only go back to the 50's, these "Super Outbreaks" could be once in 30-40 year events...which means that for many of us, there could be another one in our lifetimes.
 

KoD

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Well, that's a thought...even as it was 4/15 would obviously be considered a very major event in any other year, but the idea of two "Super Outbreaks" in two weeks is chilling.

I think it was Max from Extreme Planet who first talked about this, but "Super Outbreaks" might be much more common than a lot of us tend to think. 4/3/74 was called a "once in 500 year event" by many, many respected meteorologists including Fujita and Grazulis. Then 4/27/11 happened, and then when you consider the 3/21/32 Dixie Alley outbreak, which was almost certainly much bigger than official records say (since there were no confirmed F0 or F1 tornadoes). I also find it doubtful that of the 10+ violent tornadoes on that day there were none of F5 strength, especially considering how the damage from three of them was probably borderline F5.

Considering that reliable tornado records only go back to the 50's, these "Super Outbreaks" could be once in 30-40 year events...which means that for many of us, there could be another one in our lifetimes.
Very true, we really don't know how common "super outbreaks" really are. I hope I never have to see a true 1 in 500 year outbreak... Given the devastation a 1 in 30-50 year outbreak has, it could certainly redefine the phrase super outbreak. No doubt in the past there's been some absolutely mind-boggling events that have occurred before humans had the means of recording them, and before people were even on this continent.
 

Fred Gossage

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Well, that's a thought...even as it was 4/15 would obviously be considered a very major event in any other year, but the idea of two "Super Outbreaks" in two weeks is chilling.

I think it was Max from Extreme Planet who first talked about this, but "Super Outbreaks" might be much more common than a lot of us tend to think. 4/3/74 was called a "once in 500 year event" by many, many respected meteorologists including Fujita and Grazulis. Then 4/27/11 happened, and then when you consider the 3/21/32 Dixie Alley outbreak, which was almost certainly much bigger than official records say (since there were no confirmed F0 or F1 tornadoes). I also find it doubtful that of the 10+ violent tornadoes on that day there were none of F5 strength, especially considering how the damage from three of them was probably borderline F5.

Considering that reliable tornado records only go back to the 50's, these "Super Outbreaks" could be once in 30-40 year events...which means that for many of us, there could be another one in our lifetimes.
Then, you add the fact that both the March 21-22, 1952 and Palm Sunday 1965 tornado outbreaks had a double digit violent tornado count... and I'm not so sure we know just how frequently or infrequently these type of events occur.
 

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