Tuesday Evening Tornado Warning Surprises Steuben County Residents
Wednesday Aug 08, 2018 1:11am
By: Sheila McCrea and Randy Brown
Tornado Warnings took many area residents by surprise early Tuesday evening in Steuben County.
At 4:52 p.m. Tuesday night the National Weather Service issued a “Tornado Warning” for Steuben County Indiana, prompting an immediate emergency response from Steuben County Emergency Management.
Steuben County Emergency Management Director, Randy Brown made contact with the National Weather Service while responding to Old US 27 and 500 S. in Pleasant Lake attempting to verify and track the radar indicated Tornado.
With high winds, heavy rain, and severely diminished visibility, Brown with the assistance of the NWS and area fire departments continued to track a large wall cloud with noted rotation moving East running parallel to 500 S and Bellefontaine Rd. to Hamilton Lake.
The National Weather Service continued to confirm a “radar indicated” tornado showing rotation of the radar reflection. Radar rotation continued with the confirmed visible tracking of the wall cloud and slow rotation. NWS advised of weakening of radar indicated rotation as it approached the area of State Rd 1 just north of Hamilton.
Brown, with the assistance of Hamilton Fire, Metz fire and National Weather Service ended the tracking when rotation was no longer visible and the wall cloud no longer visible. NWS allowed the “Tornado Warning to Expire at 5:30 p.m.
Director Brown would like to remind the Steuben County residents “Not” to call 911 or Steuben County Communications with questions about “why are the Tornado Sirens Sounding?” or “What to do when the Sirens sound?” Brown urges local residents to tune in to local media outlets such as WLKI, Local TV, and the use of an emergency all weather radio. This will help keep 911 and emergency phone lines open for true emergencies.
Brown says that there were not any tornados that touched the ground Tuesday night, but as quickly as the warning was issued, it is a good reminder to have a plan. He says when a warning is issued or you hear a tornado siren, you should follow your action plan to take shelter. Brown says it is always a good idea to know where tornado shelters are in locations that you and your family frequently visit.