National Weather Service explains why no tornado warning in Hale
By Andrew Keller, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
HALE, MI (WNEM) -
Chainsaws echoed throughout the small town of Hale Tuesday night. Tree removal crews were busy cleaning up from the storm that whipped through the area around noon.
"All of our trees in the backyard are gone, one is on the house, the insurance was out here. It kind of wrecked the roof, the chimney," said Hale resident Chris Springsteen.
The National Weather Service determined an EF-1 tornado was on the ground in Hale for about one or two minutes with winds around 100 miles per hour.
Floyd Teall was watching TV5's tornado coverage from home when the twister touched down across the road.
"I would have been prepared for this had I known, but there was no warning, and all of a sudden, it came to an end real quick," said Teall.
Teall said it was a not-so-pleasant surprise especially since a warning was issued for Ogemaw County, which is to the west.
The National Weather Service never issued a warning for Iosco County.
TV5 asked the tough questions.
"You're looking at a whole range of factors, you're looking at the overall environment, which wasn't terribly favorable for tornadoes today, you're looking at, you have the reports, does this storm have a history of causing tornadoes, which at that point, it had not," explained Jeff Zoltowski, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gaylord.
Zoltowski said a team of experts were keeping a close watch on this storm, and it appeared as if the rotation was dying down, therefore causing no warning to be issued in Iosco County.
"We're going to go back, and look at this event, and try to make sure we learned the right lessons, so we do a better job next time. But most of the time, we do pretty well with this sort of stuff, severe weather, and you look at storms, look at their history, look at the environment, and try to piece together the puzzle, and this time it didn't quite piece together like we wanted it to," said Zoltowski.
On Tuesday night there was a sigh of relief for residents in Hale, happy there was no significant damage or loss of life. But also a reminder that Mother Nature can fool the best of them.
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