Today marks two years since a massive, deadly tornado demolished a large portion Parkersburg. The northeast Iowa community will observe a moment a silence late this afternoon marking the time the twister tore through town.
Jeff Johnson, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service, says there’s a related story. “Here in Iowa, we haven’t had a single tornado yet in 2010, which is really unusual,” Johnson says. “In fact, you’d have to go back to 1980 to find a year when we had tornadoes later than this for the first time.” He says it’s been an active year for twisters elsewhere in the nation.
“We’ve had some big tornadoes this spring south of here,” Johnson says. “Oklahoma off into the southeast U.S. and we’ve been having quite a few rounds of severe weather, including tornadoes, over the northern plains.” He reminds Iowans not to get complacent as June is usually a big tornado month for the state. The mile-wide tornado that hit on May 25th, 2008, killed six people in Parkersburg and two more in nearby New Hartford.
At least 70 injuries were reported and more than 400 homes were damaged or destroyed.
By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City