19 August 2007
Sure looks like a hurricane
Weather guys: "It's official. Tropical depression."
Erin: "Oh, yeah? I'll show you."
And we are indeed being shown. The first wave, as it were, brought about three-quarters of an inch of rain, but that was trivial. Right now the "eye," and it certainly acts like one, is over the western edge of the city, moving at a snail's pace: 10 mph. Which means that we're in for a few more hours of this, "this" being 40-mph winds, rains somewhere between torrential and Biblical, and cars floating downstream. (Most of El Reno seems to be cut off by high water.)
Through 6 am we've had about three inches of rain over and above that first wave; if we get by with only six or eight for this storm, we'll have dodged something of a bullet. (The rainfall record for the 19th of August is a feeble 0.87 inch, so it's gone; the record for any day in August is 3.17 inches, which we are exceeding even as I type.)
Meanwhile, Lake Superior continues to fall. Not that I'd want them to get tropical depressions or anything, but geez.
Update, 9:50 am: The eye has passed and the rain has tapered off: 4.5 inches or so have fallen at the airport since the storms began yesterday; Tinker AFB reports around five inches. As the eye came through, the barometer dropped markedly and the winds picked up: 60-mph readings were not uncommon. Lots of road closings were announced, the nearest being 50th and the Lake Hefner Parkway; since this is fairly high ground, I'm guessing it was due to a downed pole or something rather than to high water. The only power interruption I saw came at 7:34, with a brief roll of God's Own Tympani; it lasted only long enough to screw up the clock on the microwave.
Around the yard, there are piles of leaves and occasional bits of tree branch, and there's the usual backwash into the garage, but otherwise I've found no problems: the winds peaked here in the 40s, less of a threat to that which is vertical. NOAA Weather Radio, for the moment, is doing a loop of flood warnings, of which we have a bunch. The "do not drive into flooded areas" message, of late, has contained the following notice: "Two feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles, including sport-utility vehicles and pickup trucks." I assume this is aimed at the idiots who think hey, I've got a four-by-four, what can possibly go wrong?Posted at 6:19 AM to Soonerland , Weather or Not