Storm Warnings

Message from the Prez

Radar Image of Cape Cy 2019od Tornado threat Jul

Last week brought unprecedented storm warnings and weather to Cape Cod. Thankfully, our Barnstable Harbor neighborhood escaped the tornadoes, wind sheers, and micro-bursts that knocked down trees and power lines across the cape. The videos and images on social media have been nothing short of eye-opening.

As a seasoned “storm chaser”, I’m likely to hop into my car to bear firsthand witness to major storm events. Upon learning of Monday evening’s “Tornado Warning”, I ran outside to take down the patio umbrellas then sat in the kitchen awaiting whatever might happen next. A friend texted me suggesting it would be a good idea to go to the basement in the face of a potential tornado. Instead, I moved to the living room to enjoy the lightening show.

The following morning, I learned my lesson. Thinking nothing of the weather, aside from grabbing my baseball cap, I headed out for an 11am fundraising meeting. Fifteen minutes into the meeting my cell phone sounded out odd tones and sounds. Next a phone call. At least three times I checked my phone to ensure that it was switched to “vibrate”. It was.

As the meeting wound down, it became evident my cell phone had overridden its privacy settings to warn me that in fact a “Tornado Warning” was in progress. With minimal fanfare, we adjourned, and I headed to my trusty storm-chasing car. My goal was to get home to my dog! Driving down 6A with small branches hitting the car, torrential downpours, and a lot of big puddles I made it home safely. Twenty minutes later I was back out on the street checking out the damage. In hindsight, I was very lucky!

Storm Signals

Storm Warnings Flags Tile

As a kid, I loved to look over to the Barnstable Marine Service fuel dock to see if red triangular “small craft warning” flag was up. Today, technology delivers our storm warnings via our phones. It’s not uncommon for television broadcasts to scroll weather warnings across the bottom of the screens. Some warnings come days in advance, while others only minutes ahead of time.

As we consider issues of “Coastal Resiliency” and “Emergency Preparedness“, it is reassuring to know that we have such powerful tools close at hand.  Of course, there are those that say weather has become sensationalized, HOWEVER, the next time that phone sends me a “Tornado Warning” or other such warning, I will hear and heed its messages.  Because, no Dorothy, we may not be in Kansas, but tornadoes do hit Cape Cod!

-Avery Revere, President FBH