April 27th Tornados

Those of you who follow me on twitter know that things have been crazy here in Alabama since last Wednesday. We had horrible tornados and destruction that have touched almost everyone here.

Given the expected severe weather, both DH and I were sent home from work before the weather line came through Birmingham. We prepared the basement for a long evening. We made sure that the weather radio was accessible, that we had working flashlights, that there were oil lamps and matches available, and that we had cat treats to keep the kitties downstairs with us.

DH was monitoring the tv, and I had gotten online and was keeping up with twitter. When the tornado in Tuscaloosa started and was caught on the live tower cams, all we could do was watch in horror. Then a bit later as we watched the projected storm track, we made plans for a possible hit to our house by a major tornado. Fortunately for us, the storm cell turned, but that means there are other neighborhoods that have been destroyed.

I tried to be helpful on twitter, passing along information about the weather. I was told that one of my followers was glad to have the information that I helped to share.

The current death toll is 250 for just the state of Alabama. With the efforts of all the meteorologists, it would have been so much worse. Two thirds of the state of Alabama had damage from storms on April 27th. The same system did damage across the entire southeast. Its going to take years to recover from these tornados. Now I can be helpful here.

First, if you have the where with all, please make a donation of some kind to one of the reputable relief agencies. The Red Cross is helping out. You can text “RED CROSS” to 90999 to make a donation of $10.00. Obviously money is the most flexible donation, and can be directed to the most urgent need. Hands on Birmingham is coordinating volunteer efforts in the Birmingham area. In addition to people’s needs, there are a very large number of pets that have been displaced. The Greater Birmingham Humane Society is helping to organize that effort.

There are lots of ways to help out. Keep an eye on my tweet stream. As I get word of them, I pass opportunities along. And please keep us all in your thoughts and prayers. Its incredible what has happened and what the various people have endured.