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Travellers' Advisories, Safety and Security on the Road Recent News, political or military events, which may affect trip plans or routes. Personal and vehicle security, tips and questions.
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  #1  
Old 23 Mar 2007
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Thumbs down Tornado Advice

Headed across the southern USA (Oklahoma/Texas) in September and I am concerned about tornadoes.
Anyone any suggestions on what to do if a person gets suddenly caught up in a storm cell?
Any advice will be greatly appreciated.
Bert
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Old 23 Mar 2007
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S Usa

don't be paranoiac, you have a better chance to get killed on the HWY than with a tornado.
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  #3  
Old 23 Mar 2007
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Find a freeway underpass and hide under up near the roadway.
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Old 24 Mar 2007
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Tornado Advice

I´ve heard that if you can´t find a a real tornado shelter or root cellar (Kansas farms all have them) then just lie down in a ditch or other land depression away from your bike. We have all seen the video of the folks who survived a tornado by crouching up under a freeway bridge. However apparently that´s not the best thing to do as the wind actually accelerates as it passes under the ridge- sort of venturi effect.
We need an expert opinion.
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  #5  
Old 24 Mar 2007
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weather band Radio

Has anyone knowledge of a weatherband radio? They give timely warnings. Maybe keep a eye to the sky and watch for wierd clouds. I have known of people who go looking for tornados. Most back country midwest areas have lots of roads in a grid pattern. If the storm cloud is in front of you go around it. What would you do at home if a blizzard was moving in?
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  #6  
Old 1 Apr 2007
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If you have ever watched those tornado documentaries; countless now with all those professional and amateur storm chasers in the US, it seems that the biggest threat comes from the intense storms that occur before the actual twister hits. Heavy, heavy rain and hail seem to accompany tornadoes, but even without an actual funnel cloud and the imminent tornado to follow, some of the storms can be quite heavy with drenching rain, requiring an immediate pulling over as far to the right as one can get so as to not get rear-ended by a car or truck. Hail the size of fists are the more extreme of these types of storms, but even the smaller sized ones can injure a biker, or create an immediate slick surface on the ground. Flooding seems to be a threat in these states as well, stranding you in the middle of your travels. I don't think you will have to worry about an actual tornado as much as an extreme rain/hail storm with or without flooding.
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Old 2 Apr 2007
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Do not go under a bridge!!!

It is better to keep abreast of the current conditions and find shelter well in advance of a severe storm. These days it is not hard to do and its better then finding yourself out in a storm in the open and on a bike... There are a lot of dangerous things other then tornadoes that could ruin your day. Hail, wind, and lightning are far more likely to ruin your day! As for me if I'm riding toward an ominous looking cloud my preference is to turn around and go back to the nearest town if possible. Better to be in a restaurant enjoying a cup of coffee then enduring a cold wet storm!!!

One night about 7 years ago I was riding home from work in a very active electrical storm!!! That was very scary for me... I actually stopped at acquaintances home and asked to stay there until the storm was over.

As far as biking and tornadoes My personal decision would be to drive the bike into the ditch and lay it down... This is a far better idea then parking it along the road and allowing it to spill there or worse - Becoming storm debris! This would be only if the hit was inevitable...

I have been a storm chaser for NOAA for around 10 years and have only observed 5 tornadoes in my lifetime... The other 2 were not observed by me as they were at night and passed within 1/4 mile of me. Those were the worst! I know how to observe these storms relatively safely - usually LOL.

Yes, there can be a funnel effect under bridges that can and do amplify the winds strength!!!
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Last edited by sordello; 2 Apr 2007 at 04:36.
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