Friday, May 24, 2013
Storm chaser Danny Neal video captures the sound and fury of Monday's EF-5 tornado near Moore, OK.
Parked on the outskirts of Newcastle, OK, on Monday afternoon, south-suburban storm chaser Danny Neal and his friends knew immediately where the massive twister blowing up in front of them was headed. “I knew almost immediately where it was going,” Neal said. “A mile-and-a-half wide tornado doesn’t dissipate in two seconds. We knew it was going to Moore.” Watch Danny Neal's video of the Moore, OK, tornado (warning graphic language). Since May 3, 1999, the Oklahoma City-suburb of Moore has found itself at the epicenter of “Tornado Alley.” Five massive tornados have hit the town in 14 years, two of them EF-5’s, including Monday’s mega-twister. The EF-5 tornado that ravaged the town in May 1999, clocked the highest winds ever recorded on …
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Danny Neal and his friends expected to find tennis-ball sized hail on the Oklahoma plains on Monday. Instead, they saw the finger of God.
Danny Neal can scratch seeing an EF5 tornado off his list. The Evergreen Park storm chaser came within a mile of the "finger of God" twister before it entered the western section of Moore, OK, on Monday afternoon. Connect with Patch: Evergreen Park / Beverly-Mt. Greenwood / Oak Lawn “I’m seen many EF4s and but never an EF5. I guess I can cross it off my list,” Neal said via phone, on the drive home back to Chicago on Tuesday afternoon. “It was definitely the strongest and the deadliest tornado that I've ever seen.” Neal and two storm-chasing buddies hit the road Friday night, after computer models indicated favorable conditions for tornadoes up and down the plains states throughout the weekend. After driving through the night, Neal and his…
Monday, May 20, 2013
Here is a list of organizations helping the victims of Monday's devastating tornado in Moore, Okla.
Americans across the country are reacting with shock to the devastation caused by a 2-mile wide Tornado in Oklahoma. Dozens have died, and President Obama has declared the path of the tornado a major disaster area. If you would like to help, you can do so from your computer or mobile device right now. Patch will be posting stories of locals who are working to help victims from afar. If you know of someone local was affected by the tornado or who is working to help the victims, please contact local editors Dan Lambert or Lorraine Swanson. —Original reporting by John Ness.
Large hail, damaging winds and isolated tornadoes are all possible, according to the National Weather Service.
Serious storms may be headed our way, warns the National Weather Service. The storm system that dropped large hail and tornadoes on parts of Iowa, Kansas and Oklahoma is now headed toward Illinois. The National Weather Service has placed most of Illinois—including Cook County—in the "slight risk" category for severe weather on Monday and Tuesday. The main threats on both days consist of damaging winds and large hail. The National Weather Service's Storm Prediction Center noted in its technical discussions that isolated tornadoes are also possible on Monday and Tuesday. "The most violent storms will ignite during the afternoon and evening hours as daytime heating causes instability," Accuweather.com Meteorologist Meghan Evans wrote in her…
Would you know what to do if a warning was issued?
By Korrina Grom We're smack-dab in the middle of tornado season. Are you prepared? According to the National Weather Service, Illinois had 30 tornadoes in 2012, including an EF4 that hit Harrisburg on Feb. 29 and killed eight people. In all, Illinois' 30 tornadoes caused 111 injuries and nine fatalities. "The 30-year average in Illinois is 46 tornadoes," according to the National Weather Service. "Illinois ranks fifth in the nation in tornado frequency per square mile." Here are some facts about severe weather from the National Weather Service and the Illinois Emergency Management Agency: Are You Prepared? The Illinois Emergency Management Agency recommends that residents purchase a NOAA all-hazards weather radio. Along with having a …
Thursday, May 2, 2013
Danny Neal shares his expertise and adventures hunting tornadoes with Patch.
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Patch spends five minutes with local storm chaser, Danny Neal.
By day he runs into the burning buildings for his job as a local firefighter, but during his free time drives into tornados. We caught up with Evergreen Park storm chaser Danny Neal, 25, who shared some of his storm chasing adventures. Neal has cultivated friendships all across the plains states and is known to give talks to elementary school students. He also maintains a website of his storm photos and videos, Northern Illinois Storm Chaser, and looks forward to one day completing his meteorology degree. Tell us how you got started storm chasing? I grew up in Evergreen Park. I was like every other typical kid; I was terrified of storms. My dad (retired Oak Lawn Fire Capt. Greg Neal) would take me around locally in central Illinois to look…
Monday, April 22, 2013
Historic photo found in library archives 46 years years after the infamous Oak Lawn Tornado.
The media footprint of the infamous Oak Lawn Tornado that tore through Oak Lawn and clipped Hometown, Evergreen Park and Beverly in 1967 expanded with the discovery of a sixth image in the archives of Oak Lawn Public Library. Unlike today, when ordinary citizens can record and photograph breaking news with a smartphone, and stormchasers, images of the 1967 tornado are extremely rare. The only EF4 tornado known to hit the Chicago region, five images of the Oak Lawn Tornado are known to exist, along with a five-minute audio recording of the actual storm blowing over Oak Lawn. Connect to Patch: Oak Lawn / Evergreen Park / Beverly-Mt. Greenwood The photograph shot by Peter B. Crombie was published in the Suburban Economist on April 30, 1967, …
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Oak Lawn residents will soon be receiving a letter from the village notifying them of the installation of a new, state-of-the-art tornado siren system.
Nobody knows the wrath of Mother Nature better than the Village of Oak Lawn when an F4 tornado tore through the village in 1967, causing millions of dollars in damage and claiming 37 lives. See the attached letter to residents. The village has purchased a new, state-of-the-art tornado siren system to replace the current 25-year-old system. This new system is designed to give residents the best advance warning possible and to help Oak Lawn be better prepared for tornadoes and other emergencies. Among the new system's features are better sound coverage and voice capabiities to relay warning messages in four languages (Engilsh, Spanish, Polish and Arabic). Letters are being sent to residents notifying them of the system's installation slated …