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Whatever 🤷‍♀️ What natural disasters have you lived through?

Your experience with natural disasters

  • Landslide/mudslide

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • typhoon

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • blizzard/ice storm

    Votes: 19 86.4%
  • hurricane

    Votes: 14 63.6%
  • tornado

    Votes: 14 63.6%
  • earthquake

    Votes: 11 50.0%
  • flood

    Votes: 11 50.0%
  • extreme heat wave/drought

    Votes: 10 45.5%
  • extreme cold

    Votes: 13 59.1%
  • tsunami

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • cyclone

    Votes: 3 13.6%
  • wildfire

    Votes: 6 27.3%
  • volcano eruption

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • avalanche

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • locusts and/or frogs

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • dogs and cats living together

    Votes: 12 54.5%
  • cloudy with a chance of meatballs

    Votes: 3 13.6%
  • the Book of Revelation

    Votes: 2 9.1%
  • wtf

    Votes: 2 9.1%
  • Arizona

    Votes: 8 36.4%

  • Total voters
    22
  • Poll closed .

Maister

Chairman of the bored
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
29,469
Points
73
I have experienced typhoons, hurricanes, tornadoes, extreme cold, earthquakes, and dogs and cats living together, but in almost every case was spared misfortune. Experienced no damage when the tornado blew thru town, the hurricane in NC was downgraded to a Category 1 by the time it hit shore. Similar thing with the typhoon. I can't say the earthquakes I experienced were much more than tremors. About the only real disasters I've taken head-on have been winter related things like the Blizzard of 79, ice storms, or the much-feared polar vortex, but otherwise I guess I've lived a charmed life in this respect.

I must confess I made that up about experiencing dogs and cats living together. I said that just so people would look upon me in awe like I was some kind of grizzled disaster veteran.
 

RandomPlanner

Cyburbian
Messages
1,815
Points
27
When I was a kid, we were visiting a state fair and on the midway when a tornado touched down. I remember holding onto my older sibling's hand and being pulled through the crowds of people toward buildings of 'safety'. I looked back and could not see my hand in front of my face, it was just pitch black and cloudy.

Years later I found out that my father had taken my mother's hand and looked at my 12 yo sibling seriously, "I am not turning around for you; you keep your sister and keep up with us and you follow closely". I'm sure he checked on us and wouldn't have just left us out there alone but he scared the crap out of my 4-years-older sibling who from that day forward, felt the full responsibility of taking care of me.

The roof came off the building that we ran to for safety. But I don't remember anyone getting hurt in the tornado.
 

Rygor

Cyburbian
Messages
2,760
Points
19
The 1990 Plainfield tornado was only a few miles from me. Likewise one in '84, '96, and '08. I endured Hurricane Fran in '97 when I was stationed off the coast of SE Virginia. That's probably the worst REAL disaster I actually went through. Growing up in Illinois it's just par for the course, though. Only earthquake I've really felt was the 5.4 Illinois quake in '08. I've lived in AZ for most of the past 4.5 years, so I guess heat waves and haboobs are routine.
 

illinoisplanner

Cyburbian
Messages
5,335
Points
25
Blizzard/Extreme Cold - The ones that stick in my mind are the Blizzard of 99, the Groundhog Day Blizzard of 2011, the Groundhog Day/Super Bowl Blizzard of 2015, and the extremely cold winter of 2013-14. I've also been in some doozies of ice storms and other snows that have caused my car to spin out of control, one to cause my car to go off the road (which I somehow managed to get out of), and many a time when I had to white-knuckle the steering wheel over snow and ice-packed roads. The winter of 2013-14 caused pipes to freeze and burst in the house I was living in at the time, putting a whole in the ceiling, damaging much of the kitchen, dining room, and garage, and causing flooding in the basement which damaged or destroyed several things I had down there (mostly old junk, but still...). That same winter, I also landed at Midway Airport (scary even on a clear day) in the middle of the January 7th blizzard, was stranded on the tarmac for 45 minutes since the jet bridge froze, and somehow made it home through 1-2 feet snow drifts out in the outlying suburbs and didn't die.

Extreme Heat - I remember the Chicago Heat Wave of 1995 that killed 750 people, mostly poorer elderly people who lived alone (and impacting blacks more adversely). I still don't think my family had central air yet (or we might have just gotten it) and remember putting blankets on the windows to keep out the heat and going for drives in the evening to get out of the house. I also remember a heat wave in the summer of 1999.

Cyclone - Several late fall low pressure systems that set up over the Great Lakes have brought high winds and subsequent damage to the area. I remember this one in the late 90s caused the skies to turn green and caused almost everyone in my neighborhood to lose substantial portions of their vinyl siding. My house was somehow spared since the contractors had changed by the time our house was constructed.

Derecho and Hailstorm - Not included, but I've been through several bad ones. One such storm in 2008 combined both phenomena, producing wind-blown hail that caused just about everyone in three cities with a combined population of 100,000 to need new siding and roofs. I remember all hands were on deck in the planning & building permit and even me the intern was processing building permits that summer amongst other projects. I guess you could see the diaster kept the local economy afloat as the new housing market came to a screeching halt right before the bottom fell out. Another bad hailstorm struck five days after I got a brand new car in 2014, and of course I changed my car insurance to a higher deductible to save money. It caused $5,000 in damage, of which I had to pay between $500-$1,000.

Flood - When I was a kid in the late 90s or early 2000s, a severe thunderstorm knocked out our power and the rain just kept pouring all night long. We woke just in time to find water creeping from the sump pump and we scrambled to rescue as much as we could and get things to higher ground. My dad took off work and he luckily had help from us kids who were home for the summer.

Earthquake - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_Illinois_earthquake. I awoke thinking a truck hit my townhome building in college, but alas it was an earthquake. A small decoration on my bookshelf was knocked down. I slept through the 2004 one, but other people in my house felt it.

Man-made - Was at NIU during the 2008 shooting that struck our campus. Was not actually in that particular classroom (although I had several classes in there before), but an incident like this certainly does affect the whole campus and the community.

Cats and dogs living together - Yes. Once in 1996 and again in 2014.
 

Big Owl

Cyburbian
Messages
2,800
Points
34
I have lived through several hurricanes but I am in the western Piedmont of NC so other than Huricane Hugo that was a Cat 2 when it came through, the rest weren't much more than some gusty winds and a lot of rain. Tropical Storm Allison, while not a hurricane, it was an interesting experience. I was with a group of Boy Scouts hiking the last leg of NC Mountains to the Sea trail. The last 81 miles goes along the outer banks. The storm took an odd route through the southeast from the gulf head toward the Atlantic. We were camped out for the night and about 3 or 4 am the winds starting blowing hard and was doing a number on the tents. We broke camp quickly and took shelter outside of a restaurant nearby that had a large porch. At that point, the bottom fell out and the rain was pouring. A scout pointed out the tv in the restaurant that you could see from the window. It was showing the weather channel and Jim Cantore was in the town that we were in. A few hours latter we saw a weather channel van/bus-like vehicle drive passed so we figured things were improving so we got ready and headed out. It would have been neat to have walked past Jim as he was doing a broadcast. It wasn't as bad as Hugo but it was unsettling being that exposed during the storm. A few of the scouts were pretty scared and on the verge of full scale panic attacks. It's definitely an experience that I am glad that we safely got through it but I could go the rest of my life not.
 

Whose Yur Planner

Cyburbian
Messages
11,790
Points
43
Let's see-the '76 '78 '06 blizzards. There was one in the 80's but I can't remember the date. '13 ice storm. Numerous white outs. The Palm Sunday tornado outbreak. Had tornado touch down within a mile where I live in '13. I've been through two hurricanes so far. Both were a lot or wind and rain. Extreme heat and heat index factor-that's pretty much most summers here.
 
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JNA

Cyburbian Plus
Messages
26,423
Points
68
Avalanches - Utah and Colorado
Blizzard - Colorado
Earthquakes - Wabash Valley Faultline
Extreme Cold & Wind Chill Factor - Utah & Colorado
Extreme Heat & Heat Index Factor - SW Indiana
Floods - Ohio River
Hailstone - Colorado
Hurricanes & Nor'easters - Jersey Shore
Tornadoes - SW Indiana
 

DVD

Cyburbian
Messages
15,420
Points
53
I've got a great list of things, but none were really traumatic to me.

Earthquakes - minor ones when I lived in southern Cal as a kid.
Hurricane - went through the eye of one at sea, it was awesome! I've also done a couple tropical storms which left and became hurricanes.
Tornadoes - seen them at sea and had one hit behind us in New Mexico - New Mexico hates me.
Extreme heat - I lived in Phoenix when it hit 122.
Arizona - See above, plus add haboobs.
Fires - drove through some wild fire areas in Arizona. Nothing exciting, just keep moving in case the fire spreads
Volcano - Mt Etna had a slow eruption so we were on a ready to be recalled status.
I can't claim extreme cold, but I did boot camp in Great Lakes over the winter.
Blizzard - had a minor one here. We're not talking New England blizzard
Flood - had some minor flooding here.
 

Whose Yur Planner

Cyburbian
Messages
11,790
Points
43
Let's see-the '76 '78 '06 blizzards. There was one in the 80's but I can't remember the date. '13 ice storm. Numerous white outs. The Palm Sunday tornado outbreak. Had tornado touch down within a mile where I live in '13. I've been through two hurricanes so far. Both were a lot or wind and rain. Extreme heat and heat index factor-that's pretty much most summers here.

I forgot the '74 tornado outbreak
 

WSU MUP Student

Cyburbian
Messages
10,986
Points
51
Plenty of hurricanes, blizzards, tornadoes, heat waves, some very minor earthquakes when I lived in Japan, etc.

The only disaster of note was Hurricane Floyd in Eastern NC in 1999. This was a category 4 hurricane that flirted with a category 5. I think by the time it made landfall, basically directly above us, it was downgraded to a cat 3 but the rains were awful. I was in the Marines and while most of the folks at Camp Lejeune, New River, and Cherry Point were evacuated, I worked in one of the few offices that needed to remain open. Our office was basically a bunker that would never lose power or communication so a lot of the first responders form community set up shop in our space so that was sort of interesting. I normally worked midnights by myself or with the watch officer for the day so it was interesting having a bunch of people in the building with us. However, since I was the only enlisted person in that position who wasn't married, I got voluntold to stay on duty for the duration while the rest of our normal staff was allowed to evacuate. I was told somebody would relieve me about 48 hours after the worst had passed... unfortunately all the rivers in the area flooded horribly so nobody could get back to the base so I was stuck on duty for about a week without more than a couple hours rest. :not:

About a month before Hurricane Floyd, I was in the Mediterranean when an absolutely massive earthquake hit Izmit, Turkey killing around 20,000 people and making refugees of hundreds of thousands more. We were in Rota, Spain preparing to return to the U.S. when it occurred but got sent to Turkey to help with the clean up and aid. Like I said, I wasn't there for the actual quake, but the aftermath was the most horrific thing I have ever seen.

In 2003 or 2004 when I was in NC, we had a period of about 6 weeks where we had 3 or 4 relatively weak hurricanes come through. It was as if we never got a break. Thankfully, none of them did much damage.
 

otterpop

Cyburbian
Messages
6,655
Points
28
Hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, flood, and wildfires. God keeps coming after me, but I keep dodging him. I'm even surviving having a teenager.

I think Mark Twain said his mother didn't worry about him drowning because she figured he was destined to hang. So it is with me. God just hasn't found the disaster with my name on it yet.
 

Maister

Chairman of the bored
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
29,469
Points
73

Was reminded of this when I saw that Terminator responded "May 20, 1980" on the Madlib thread. The tornado actually occurred one week to the day prior to that date. I was in high school at the time. Mrs. Maister saw the funnel cloud from the second story of her high school afterschool as she was trying (unsuccessfully) to close a window.
 

TOFB

Cyburbian
Messages
2,848
Points
37
Other than blizzards/extreme cold which we have most years, the only event that impacted me directly in a significant way the derecho.
 

Bubba

Cyburbian
Messages
5,684
Points
43
I've had tornados jump over the building I was in twice. And, while not a natural disaster, I was a couple of blocks away from an abortion clinic bombing years ago (Eric Robert Rudolph - f*ck that guy).
 

mendelman

Unfrozen Caveman Planner
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
15,006
Points
59
Worse I've experienced is massive sustained snowstorms, extended deep freezes and sustained torrential rain (this one is usually the remnants of gigantic hurricanes from the Gulf).

The deep freezes and snowstorms were all exprienced in the immediate Great Lakes region, so they aren't a problematic since the region is very experienced with them.
 

Hawkeye66

Cyburbian
Messages
654
Points
24
We had one here in Iowa this last Summer that wasn't on your list: Derecho. A fast moving ultra high wind thunderstorm. One hit Iowa last August 10th. My son's high school was damaged so bad it just opened. Cedar Rapids lost half its tree canopy. We had like 100 mph winds for 30 minutes

 

Maister

Chairman of the bored
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29,469
Points
73
We had one here in Iowa this last Summer that wasn't on your list: Derecho. A fast moving ultra high wind thunderstorm. One hit Iowa last August 10th. My son's high school was damaged so bad it just opened. Cedar Rapids lost half its tree canopy. We had like 100 mph winds for 30 minutes

Derecho are a long lasting form of 'straight line winds'. We got hit with a straight line wind storm back in 2001.
 

Hawkeye66

Cyburbian
Messages
654
Points
24
Derecho are a long lasting form of 'straight line winds'. We got hit with a straight line wind storm back in 2001.

This one was a bit different because it had a strong rain and thunderstorm component. We had some straight line winds here also in 2008, but this one lasted a lot longer and was more destructive.
 

Doohickie

Cyburbian
Messages
3,585
Points
46
I think the worst thing I've been through weather-wise was the Texas freeze last week. But I'm not sure I would call that a natural disaster since conditions were normal for more northern climes. It was a disaster of policy.
 

Big Owl

Cyburbian
Messages
2,800
Points
34
The only disaster of note was Hurricane Floyd in Eastern NC in 1999. This was a category 4 hurricane that flirted with a category 5. I think by the time it made landfall, basically directly above us, it was downgraded to a cat 3 but the rains were awful. I was in the Marines and while most of the folks at Camp Lejeune, New River, and Cherry Point were evacuated, I worked in one of the few offices that needed to remain open. Our office was basically a bunker that would never lose power or communication so a lot of the first responders form community set up shop in our space so that was sort of interesting. I normally worked midnights by myself or with the watch officer for the day so it was interesting having a bunch of people in the building with us. However, since I was the only enlisted person in that position who wasn't married, I got voluntold to stay on duty for the duration while the rest of our normal staff was allowed to evacuate. I was told somebody would relieve me about 48 hours after the worst had passed... unfortunately all the rivers in the area flooded horribly so nobody could get back to the base so I was stuck on duty for about a week without more than a couple hours rest. :not:
A buddy and I were down at Myrtle Beach before Floyd made landfall. We figured that a mandatory evacuation was going to happen so we got every thing packed on my truck and hit the road with everyone else. It took us 5 hours to go five miles. We were trading beer for water, at 1 beer for 2 waters. We grilled hamburgers on the small grill on the back of my truck. It was a slow moving tail gate party. It was a surreal experience to say the least. For perspective, 5 hours was typically how long it took to go the 260 miles home at the time. That day it took 11 hours because of the traffic due to the evacuations.
 

Bubba

Cyburbian
Messages
5,684
Points
43
I think the worst thing I've been through weather-wise was the Texas freeze last week. But I'm not sure I would call that a natural disaster since conditions were normal for more northern climes. It was a disaster of policy.
A colleague of mine (Hawaii resident) who is a FEMA reservist is mobilizing to ship out tonight for a 30-day tour of duty in Dallas - someone thinks it's a natural disaster...
 

bureaucrat#3

Member
Messages
103
Points
8
I've been through the tail end of a few hurricanes and lots of tornados. The area I grew up in had a lot of floodplain and so we had a few floods to deal with, but it usually meant the drive to school went from 20 minutes to an hour or more.
I've had tornados jump over the building I was in twice. And, while not a natural disaster, I was a couple of blocks away from an abortion clinic bombing years ago (Eric Robert Rudolph - f*ck that guy).

I lived about a mile from the clinic he blew up in Birmingham. I'm in complete agreement with you on Rudolph.
 

Gedunker

Moderating
Staff member
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11,730
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45
Lots of run-of-the-mill stuff like floods, blizzards, derechoes (though not of last summer's Iowa intensity) for the most part. The remnants of Hurricane Ike merging with a cold front over the Ohio Valley was the most fraught however and really left me feeling powerless to protect myself or my family. Hearing and watching a massive ash tree snap and collapse onto a masonry building - flattening it - was pretty crazy. I still say it is the only time I have truly "seen" the wind. Not eager to ever do that again.
 
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