Tornadoes In Chicago Area

At least five tornadoes were reported in north central Illinois on Monday night, writes WLS Chicago.

Those tornadoes were reported in Will, Kankakee, Lee, Grundy and LaSalle counties.

Three tornadoes have been confirmed by the National Weather Service, writes ABC7 Chicago.

The National Weather Service stated the towns of Coal City, Sublette and Mendota were among the hardest hit by Monday’s severe weather.

WLS Chicago writes that damage survey teams will be dispatched to the areas.

About 17,200 ComEd customers are without power as of 8:30 a.m. Tuesday.  Most of the outages are in Dixon, Sterling, Coal City and Joliet.  At the height of the storm, more than 55,000 customers were out of power.  ComEd aims to have power restored to all customers by around 11 p.m. Tuesday.

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner declared Grundy and Lee counties disaster areas on Tuesday and made state resources available to help tornado victims.

Rauner activated the State Emergency Operations Center Monday night to make crews and equipment available to help local emergency responders.

http://abc7chicago.com/weather/at-least-5-tornadoes-touch-down-in-illinois/800474/

25 Deaths From Storm Cell In South

CNN

More than 25 people in two countries have been killed by the same storm system, claims CNN. That death toll is set to go up. The deaths have occurred in the Southern portion of the U.S. and in Mexico.

Alyssa Renee Ramirez had many friends in her hometown of Devine, Texas, southwest of San Antonio.

At Devine High School, she was student council president and co-editor of the yearbook. She starred on the tennis and volleyball teams, not to mention as a cheerleader.

CNN writes that she was the homecoming queen that school year.  She and her friends had been out on prom night Saturday but never returned home.  Her car got caught up in fast-moving floods, ending her short life and leaving her classmates crestfallen.

CNN looks at the storms that have hit Oklahoma, Texas, and Mexico.

How Has Chris Christie Dealt With Previous Natural Disasters?

With a nasty blizzard heading towards New Jersey on Monday, Chris Christie declared the 15th weather-related state of emergency since he took office in January, 2010.

Utah radio station KVNU looks at five key weather-related events during Christie’s tenure:

1. The Disney World Blizzard – 2010

Christie came under fire when he stayed on vacation at Florida’s Disney World during a brutal December snowstorm, rather than coming home to lead his state’s response. His lieutenant governor Kim Guadagno was also vacationing at the time, leaving Steve Sweeney, the Democratic state Senate president, in charge.

2. “Get the hell off the beach” – 2011

Christie flaunted his signature tough-talking style when he called for a mandatory evacuation of points on the Jersey Shore in the run-up to Hurricane Irene. “Do not waste any more time working on your tan. Get off the beach, get out of your beach houses and get to safer lands,” he said, expressing frustration over news coverage of people catching rays despite severe weather warnings.

3. Sandy bipartisanship – 2012

The devastating late-October hurricane, which killed 117 people per a CDC analysis and destroyed thousands of homes, will likely remain one of the most defining periods in Christie’s administration.

Politically, it was memorable in part because Christie warmly welcomed President Obama to tour storm damage on the Jersey Shore, praising him for his rapid mobilization of federal assets and coordination with the state. While Christie’s overture earned him bipartisan praise for seeming to put politics aside in the interest of his state (and some state polls had his approval rating soaring) he upset many national Republicans, some of whom later suggested his harmony with the president might have contributed to Romney’s ballot box loss just four days later.  Iowa political operative Doug Gross was quoted by the New York Times as saying it might hurt Christie with Iowa caucus voters, who, Gross said, “don’t forget things like this.”

4. Swiping at other leaders – 2010, 2012

Christie has never shied from defending himself against criticism, especially coming from fellow tri-state leaders over his response to a storm.

After former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani tweaked Christie for staying in Florida during a 2010 blizzard (see #1), the New Jersey governor shot back on Fox News. “It’s easy when you are out of office to be shooting from the peanut gallery when you no longer have any responsibility, but I have a responsibility to my family…I’m just going to chalk it off to a bad morning for the mayor. Maybe he didn’t have a good breakfast or something like that,” Christie said

5. Canceling the party – 2014, 2015

Perhaps as a result of the backlash over his Disney trip in 2010, Christie has recently bowed out of several political events due to winter storms.

The governor canceled his own re-election celebration in January 2014 over concerns that bad weather could lead to road hazards.  He also skipped ceremonies in Ohio and Illinois this month as part of a tour congratulating Republican governors.

http://www.610kvnu.com/politics/c8a593bea5de3604926d3b9034db7b2e#sthash.AS830GOY.dpuf

The U.S. 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season Had Fewer Hurricanes Than Average

Hurricane1According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1st through November 30th.

Weather Underground stated that the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season ended up with below average activity.  There were 8 named storms, 6 hurricanes, 2 intense hurricanes, and an Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) that was 63% of the 1981 – 2010 median.

Fox 12 Oregon states that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issued their forecast back in May. They anticipated seven to 12 named storms, with three to six of those becoming strong enough to be classified as a hurricane.

Myfoxorlando.com stated that though the season was quiet, the National Hurricane Center was able to use new tools that could improve the track and intensity predictions.

Meanwhile, the eastern North Pacific hurricane season was its busiest since 1992, with 20 named storms.

http://www.kptv.com/story/27523877/atlantic-hurricane-season-ends-quietly#ixzz3KnDZAlco

The U.S. Weather Infrastructure

Does the U.S. have difficulty predicting the weather and creating accurate weather forecasts?

Thom Hartmann talks with Kathryn Miles, Journalist & Author of Superstorm:  Nine Days Inside Hurricane Sandy about the U.S. weather infrastructure.

Video by Thom Hartmann.

Union Of Concerned Scientists Graph: Media Climate Change Coverage

Cable news climate coverage accuracyA few months ago, the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) published an analysis of 2013 climate coverage by the three major American cable news networks. The networks were:  CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC.

UCS reviewed nearly 600 segments mentioning “global warming” or “climate change” across the networks’ most prominent evening and weekend programs during the 2013 calendar year.

The blue color signifies what UCS considers accurate information, the red color signifies misleading information.  Of the three, clearly Fox News gave the most inaccurate information and MSNBC gave the most accurate information.

New England: Tens Of Thousands Without Power

According to AccuWeather.com, tens of thousands are without power in New England due to a storm.

The storm battered New England on Wednesday night as widespread damage was reported. Tens of thousands of customers were without power across Connecticut, New York, Maine and Massachusetts.

The worst part of the storm will continue into early Thursday in New England and into Thursday night in the maritime provinces of Canada, and it will strengthen while moving up the Atlantic coast into Friday.