Tornado's path offers a 'learning opportunity'

6:23 AM, May 27, 2008   |    comments
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There are always gawkers, in the wake of destructive events like last night's Hugo tornado. Todd Krause spent today stopping at nearly every touchdown spot on the twister's 20 mile path, but his mission was purely business. "We're trying to do a survey, looking for how much damage, where it was, is it continuous, how strong, that sort of thing," he explained. Krause is the warning coordination meteorologist for the National Weather Service. He moved from Coon Rapids to Blaine, and Lino Lakes to Hugo, documenting the tornado's behavior with pictures and notes, then sorting through possible scenarios as to how it unfolded. "It's possible we may have one tornado, it dissipated, and then a brand new tornado touched down and moved into Hugo, that's one possibility," Krause opined. "Another possibility is that it was the same tornado, but was just very weak in-between for a little while." Krause's findings, and a survey from the air will be matched with radar images from yesterday's storm system. By looking at how the twister looked on the radar, and what it actually did on the ground, meteorologists may be able to recognize potential tornados earlier, and better understand the way they track. "The reason we go out and do damage surveys is not merely just to say, it was this strong, or it was that strong or how long it was," maintained Krause. "We do this to go back and look at the radar data, so we can learn something for the next time. We learn something for the next time, because unfortunately, there will be another time."

By Dana Thiede, KARE 11 News

(Copyright 2008 by KARE. All Rights Reserved.)

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