That’s how the National Geographic
describes hurricanes. It’s a description that might be equally appropriate for tornadoes.
We don’t need National Geographic
to tell us about the devastation these storms can cause. All we have to do is check the Internet or turn on the news. Lives lost, neighborhoods — even towns — wiped out.
Given thatthe National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) notes that a tornado may occur at any time of the day or year somewhere in the U.S. and that Rita, Wilma, Katrina and a long list of other hurricanes have etched their names in the records of weather-related disasters, it’s surprising that the safe rooms, like the one described in our cover article this month, are rare.
The cover photo is of tornado survivor Jerrie Nellterry, Moulton, Ala. She stands in the door of a safe room following a tornado outbreak that occurred from April 25-28, 2011, across six states, causing 322 tornado-related deaths. The EF5 tornado that swept through Moulton on April 27 carved a mile-wide, 70 miles long path of death and destruction. She credits the safe room with saving her life. All of the occupants of the safe room were uninjured, but her husband was injured by flying debris while in the basement just outside the safe-room door.
Although we realize that few, if any, of our members will be inspecting homes with safe rooms, we hope readers will find this topic as compelling and as interesting as we did.