tornadoes

Kate Carlton

It’s been nearly a year since a series of tornadoes devastated central Oklahoma, destroying homes, parks and commercial buildings. During the recovery process, construction crews gathered over 300,000 tons of debris between just Oklahoma City and Moore. 

Jeff Bedick is the District Manager for Waste Connections, which operates a landfill in west Oklahoma City. The facility sits on 200 acres, which mostly just looks like a giant, grass-covered hill on the side of the highway.

Oklahoma was hit particularly hard by two massive outbreaks this year in what's been another deadly season of tornadoes in the U.S. Despite technology and forecasting improvements, scientists still have plenty to learn about how and why tornadoes form.

Currently, one of the best ways for researchers to understand how tornadoes form is to chase them. So off they go with mobile science laboratories, rushing toward storms armed with research equipment and weather-sensing probes.

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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

For students in Moore, Oklahoma it's not just new backpacks and pencils this year. For many, it's entirely new schools and homes. A tornado ripped through the community nearly three months ago. It destroyed two schools, killed seven students and 18 other people in the city. And tomorrow, students return to class.

Rachel Hubbard, of member station KOSU, checks in with Moore to see how the community is doing.

There are now reports that as many as 18 people died from injuries they received Friday when the latest in a weeks-long series of tornado-spawning storms tore through parts of Oklahoma.

Update at 8:50 p.m. ET. Death Toll Revised:

An update from Oklahoma's Department of Emergency Management Monday evening reports that 12 adults and 6 children died in Friday night's storms, NPR Southern Bureau Chief Russell Lewis tells us. Officials say that they haven't identified all of the victims. Our original post continues:

Why Do People Live In Twister-Prone Oklahoma?

Jun 3, 2013

In covering the devastating tornadoes in Oklahoma, we've been asking a lot of questions about safety and preparedness.

Tim Samaras had one passion in life: Tornadoes. He told The Weather Channel that when he was kid, his mother sat him down in front of The Wizard of Oz; he was immediately entranced by the violent, dark twister that tore through the landscape.

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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

In Moore, Oklahoma, residents and volunteers are deep into cleanup and not for the first time. Moore has been hit by several powerful tornadoes in the past 15 years. Many residents insist they're staying in Moore despite the danger of tornadoes.

In fact, as we hear from Rachel Hubbard of member station KOSU, it's hard to find someone who wants to leave. But she did find two friends who say they've had enough.

Obama In Oklahoma: 'You Are Not Alone'

May 26, 2013

President Obama toured the devastation in Moore, Okla. Sunday afternoon, comforting some victims and pledging federal support. He said that he came to city as a representative of the American people.

"I'm just a messenger here," Obama said, "letting everybody know that you are not alone."

As Recovery Continues, Obama Heads To Oklahoma

May 26, 2013

President Obama is scheduled to visit the city of Moore, Okla., today, to survey the devastation left behind by by a monster EF-5 tornado.

The AP reports:

Amid Nails And Mud, Oklahoma Neighborhood Pulls Together

May 25, 2013

Brian Hock was standing Wednesday evening in what used to be his home but is now 2,000 square feet of nothing. Still resting in a bag of dog food was the cup he uses to scoop kibble, emblazoned with the slogan "Fear not: God's love shines bright."

Hock was at work Monday when the tornado smashed his house in the Heatherwood subdivision of Moore, Okla. He says his daughters survived only because neighbors invited them to share a custom shelter.

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