Severe weather gets early start

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Wind, hail, thunder -- nothing unusual about that in Southwest Nebraska.

But in February?

Granted, it was almost March -- it would have been the last day of February if we had not had today's Leap Day, Feb. 29.

We missed the snow that fell north of us, but were surprised to see small hailstones falling along with .05 inch of rain.

Not your usual February weather.

There was even a tornado reported near Stapleton, the first tornado on record for February in Nebraska. At least 11 tornadoes were reported from Nebraska to Tennessee.

Sadly, at least four people were killed, and a twister roared through Branson, Missouri's downtown entertainment district. Our hearts go out to those kind, hospitable folks in Branson and we wish their town a speedy recovery.

Monday, March 19, through Friday, March 23, is officially Severe Weather Awareness Week in Nebraska, but with weather like Tuesday's, perhaps we need to move that observance to February.

You can find out more about tornadoes, and Severe Weather Awareness Week, at http://www.crh.noaa.gov/gid/?n=sev

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