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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

My thoughts about the Super Derecho Wind Storm

I thought I had better write about the huge human tragedy that is unfolding in the states just to our north.  
Many of the people here in Raleigh, North Carolina, might have slept through the high winds which whipped through our area on Friday night, June 29, 2012.  The heavy winds hitting my bedroom window woke me up at midnight, and I went downstairs to find my husband and son going in and out of the house, watching the trees blow, and rescuing our trash cans which were rolling into the neighbor’s yard.
On Saturday I saw a tree down at the Raleigh Temple, but other than that, it was a normal (but extremely hot) June day.
We were sad to turn on the internet on Saturday and find out what devastation had been wreaked all across approximately 7 states just north of us.  13 deaths were caused by this storm.  
The headlines say, “DC Grocery Stores out of food”, “Gas unavailable”, “Grid Down as Summer Heat Rages”, “Catastrophic Damage to Power Grid”, “Hell Commute: Thousands of Stoplights Dark”, 
Media is reporting that some residents of the affected states may not expect power back until Friday July 6, a full week after the storm.
I think it is strange that the meteorologists are using the new term “Super Derecho”, I wonder if they made up a new term because they have never seen a non-hurricane this bad before?
My husband gave his testimony in church on Sunday, and reminded the congregation that if that storm had only been a little stronger in our area, we wouldn’t have power either.  Sitting in our nice, cool, comfortably air conditioned chapel, I felt very grateful for the electricity.
Today, Monday July 2, there are still 3 million people without power.
And here I sit, with no disaster affecting me.  But I am feeling a little stunned, because we usually have the advantage of being warned a week ahead of disasters (when they are hurricanes.)  It makes me feel uneasy, seeing a pseudo-hurricane happen near us with absolutely no warning.  It opens my eyes to the fact that we need to be constantly vigilant for all weather events, not just when a hurricane is spotted.
I am thankful that I have shelf stable food, which will stay good without refrigeration.  I am thankful that I have gasoline in my cars.  I am thankful that I have ice already frozen in many sodapop bottles in my freezer.  I am thankful to have many types of alternative lighting methods, alternative cooking methods, and stored water.
It is vital that we prepare for events such as these.  
(Next, a report from a friend of mine, who called to tell me about her experiences in Washington DC during the windstorm.)

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