West Liberty Cleanup Continuing

West Liberty Update – Almost 4 weeks after the EF3 tornado

I was in West Liberty today for the first time in 10 days and the changes are very
dramatic. They are working very hard to clean up and rebuild. The most visible
change is that the debris has been removed from the streets and sidewalks
downtown and they’ve been swept clean up to the fronts of the buildings. Even
though most all of the buildings are badly damaged or destroyed, getting the
sidewalks and streets clean has made things look a lot better. The greening of
the hills and the drying out of the fallen timber has kind of made the destroyed
trees look like the damage was done quite awhile ago instead of less than 4
weeks ago. The owner of the poolroom that was destroyed and was known for it’s
food is back in business in mobile concession stands and was doing a brisk
business. No one knows what will be replaced and who will leave but for the most
part the townspeople have made great strides toward cleaning up after the
disaster and rebuilding their town. There’s lots of work to be done and it’s
going to take them a long time to do it, but they are making good headway. Lots
of people from all over have volunteered their time to help with the work that
needs to be done and lots from all over have donated money to help those who
lost their homes and some who even lost jobs.

Keep these people in your prayers. David P.

Submitted by Fred Jones, WA4SWF

Tornadoes – UPDATE 3-4

Info from AJ4KI……..
Many KY ARES Region 3 operators responded to requests for assistance from Clark County (IN) RACES.

Rick, KC4S operated as net control Friday night through Saturday. Keith, AJ4KI established a cross-band repeater at a shelter site north of Henryville and remained on station through Friday night. Grady Josline KY9L (with Jefferson County S&R) and
James Brown KJ4YIG assisted with search and rescue.

Dennis Lutz (KJ4HUW), Lee Roy Massey (KE4LR), John Hurt, (KI4USD) and Dan Stratton (KJ4QFN) from Shelby County ARES responded and set up a packet station at one of the shelter locations. They relayed their traffic through K4DMU in Louisville.

Keith (AJ4KI) acted as net control for the RACES net throughout the day on Sunday. Laddie DePas (AI4RQ) and Stacy DePas (KJ4OXS) acted as backup net control and message runners on Sunday afternoon.

I’m sure that there are other KY operators who also answered the call from our neighbors in Indiana. The past 60 hours are quite a blur. It was extremely gratifying to see the outpouring of help to Henryville and I am exceedingly proud of everyone’s efforts. I expect that RACES operations will continue for the next several days.

Kudos to all the ham operators that provided invaluable reports to the Louisville NWS during the significant weather outbreak of March 2 and Pete KF4VCC as net control. Reports coming across the BARS 146.700 repeater kept the NWS well informed including a direct report of the BIG tornado on the ground around Henryville.

Kudos aside, let’s look at a refresher as to what is ‘important’ reports for the NWS. SEVERE weather is just that, severe. The NWS is looking for direct reports of rain rates in excess of 1 inch per hour, wind speed in excess of 55 MPH, and hail larger than 1/2 inch. Any other reports are superfluous and tend to bog down the entire process.

The most difficult thing to do so many times is to not transmit, to just listen. I heard what I considered a great piece of advice a few years ago. God gave me two ears and one mouth so I could listen twice as much as I talk. So when the next significant weather event rolls in, remember the criteria and transmit accordingly.

My personal thanks to these and all the others that checked in to the weather net on 146.70.