Sunday, July 1, 2012

Violent Thunderstorms

Even in suburban areas, big trees are down.  (WRVA)

(Photo: James H. Wallace-Richmond Times Dispatch )

   The end of June here has been marked by some uncharacteristically severe storms.  Several days ago, a tornado came through the area, and although our farm was untouched by anything but heavy rain that day, farms and forests nearby were damaged.   When the tornado was gone, I took a quick run out to make sure our daughter's new house was still intact, and after I found out that it was, I wound up leading people from that region, out to another access to the interstate highway, as so many roads were closed due to large downed trees, and downed power lines.  It has been very hot even for Virginia in Summer.  We have been very busy keeping chickens, ducks, dogs, and livestock alive in the extreme heat.   Sadly, five chickens died in the extreme heat this week, as did one elderly duck.  Then, on Thursday, a severe thunderstorm came through which picked up the main wooden chicken coop and threw it down elsewhere.  This killed five additional chickens due to trauma.   This was not due to the tornado, but due to a wind shear which came through about a day after.  Even my iron lawn furniture was picked up and relocated !   The damage from the last wind shear caused us to lose power, which is likely to stay out for a time, with 13 million people on the US East Coast without power.
             We have a military generator here, but honestly, we do not use it often.  As a result of not using it often, even though we check it fairly often, when we need it, we sometimes have some issues.  Keep in mind that without power, we cannot pump water, in 105 degree humid heat where to keep animals alive we must have lots of water.  My husband replaced the generator batteries, and now sees that one of the sensors has malfunctioned.  We will need to order this online on Monday.   Meanwhile, we can pump water, use the internet, run refrigeration, and some lights.  We cannot run central air conditioning, and we therefore have an emergency air conditioner for one region. We use gas for cooking, but no one here feels like cooking and so we are consuming fruit and water, and the occasional sandwich.
             We are grateful for the favor that since we had the lightning protection installed to all the buildings and three tall oaks here, the lightning has seems more active in other places.


Roads are closed everywhere.

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