Monday, November 4, 2013

Damaging Storm

 October ended with a blast: of high winds, tornadoes, power outages and heavy rain.

 Thursday night after Mom and I had gone to bed, I listened to the winds buffet the house. Even though they were gusty, I never thought they were of damaging strength here. That wasn't the case nearby.

 The National Weather Service confirmed an EF1 tornado in Vandalia (11:30 pm) and an EF0 in northwest Miami County. Up till then there had only been three tornadoes confirmed in the Miami Valley in the past twenty years. The first was estimated to have 100-110 mph winds and the 50-yard wide twister traveled 0.6 miles; the second was estimated to have 75 mph winds and a width of 30 yards, traveling 0.3 miles.

 Nearby areas of Ohio weren't spared. Southern Columbus had an EF0 tornado; Hebron had an EF1; and straight line winds did damage in Hardin County. So four confirmed tornadoes in the state of Ohio on the last day of October.

 For us, about 10:30 pm after a less-than-spectacular gust, the power went out. It wasn't repaired for 12 hours or so (I understand lines were down on Diamond Mill Road). I got up, called DP&L and went downstairs to tell Mom all was dark. We got flashlights, candles and kerosene lamps at the ready. Thankfully it wasn't a cold night; the low dipped to 47°.

 It wasn't until Friday evening that Bob and Nancy took a walk back to their pond and found heavy tree limbs down about the southwest corner of their house. Bob was dumbfounded to look up and see other limbs piercing their house roof.

Close-up of limbs piercing roof.

 Bob and I took my fiberglass ladder to his house, set it up on the south side of the two-story part and I climbed up and examined the damage. Two limbs were driven through the shingles and particle-board beneath. Other limbs had damaged the soffit to the left of this picture.
 Bob bought roofing felt earlier in the day and I cut a six foot section Then Bob tucked it under shingles higher on the roof than the damaged area (to stop rain) and nailed it in place. While Bob worked on the roof (carefully!), I stood atop the ladder and worked from below him (Nancy and Michael both held the ladder in place). It was a precarious, dangerous repair job and one we are both already too old to be doing.

Soffit damage - facing southeast

 Other limbs tore the soffit from the southwest corner of the house, ripping the shingles away and tearing through the particle-board like soft butter. We did not cover this area with tar paper, thinking rain would not get into the house at this point.

Soffit damage - facing northeast

 Even a large section of vinyl siding on the house was torn loose. We removed the sections of loose soffit and replaced the siding as best we could. Bob will call his insurance agent today (11/04) and get professional repairs underway.
 No one heard the actual damage occur. Nancy said she heard the winds increase to a "freight train roar" but did not actually hear the limbs hit the house. The damage occurred behind their bedroom in a closet area. They would not have been twenty feet away had they been in their second floor bedroom.
 Probably these were just straight line winds associated with a cold front but they certainly did their share of damage.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Powerful storm! Surprised to see tornado activity at this time of year!? Unusual...