- Where: Eastern Tennessee, southwest Virginia, and far western North Carolina.
- When: Saturday night through Tuesday
- What: Possible flooding rains and gusty winds.
WYFF News 4 anchor Mike McCormick and WYFF News 4 photojournalist Aaron Smeltzer died Monday when a tree fell on their SUV.
The accident happened on Highway 176 in Polk County while they were covering the impact of heavy rain in that area.
Tryon Fire Chief Geoffrey Tennant said the engine of the SUV was running and the transmission was in drive when authorities arrived at the scene about 2:30 p.m.
He said the tree that fell on the SUV was about 3 feet in diameter and had stood back off the road.
Tennant said the ground was saturated and the tree’s root system failed.
“I have never seen an event like this one,” Tennant, who has been in fire service in Polk County for 44 years, said.
Tennant said he had just spoken with Mike and Aaron before the accident.
“It personally affected me a little bit because I had done an interview with Mr. McCormick about 10 minutes before we got the call. And we had talked a little bit about how he wanted us to stay safe and I wanted him to stay safe and of course 10 or 15 minutes later we got the call and it was him and his photographer,” Tennant said. “It’s the first time I ever met either one of those two gentleman, but you feel a sense of responsibility to them.”
Read more – WYFF: http://bit.ly/2IR5aOi
As of this posting, Hurricane Irma is back to a Category 5, with 160MPH sustained winds.
Overnight last night it moved on a more westerly track, putting its eye over the Florida Keys and the Gulf side of Florida’s peninsula.
It is still projected to strike Florida as a Category 5, or a high Category 4 when it makes landfall.
As of 11PM EDT on 9/8/2017, LOCATION: 22.1°N, 77.7°W – 120 mi ESE of CAIBARIEN CUBA.
As it makes its way north through Florida over the weekend, East Tennesseans will want to pay attention early next week as forecast models have the remnants of Irma over northern Georgia and/or Alabama and into Tennessee late Monday through Tuesday. In some models, the center of Irma could come into Tennessee, drift West, then turn towards the East, possibly bringing tropical storm-force winds, and dumping torrential rainfall in the area and causing flooding issues as it changes directions.
Irma’s death toll stands at 22 but it may climb as it makes partial landfall in Cuba before crossing into Florida.
Stay tuned to your local television and radio outlets, listen to NOAA Weather Radio for the latest, and listen to East Tennessee SKYWARN on 146.940 (alternate 146.625 MHz) as conditions warrant.
Florida is bracing as Hurricane Irma, the strongest Atlantic hurricane ever recorded, is feared to hit Florida on Sunday.
The hurricane “remains a dangerous and life-threatening Category 5” storm, Florida Gov. Rick Scott warned Wednesday night at a briefing. Forecast models have put the storm on a track to hit Florida over the weekend, but meteorologists have warned its path could change.
Scott said Florida is “at least 48 hours away from feeling the effects of this massive system.” The Florida Keys, he said, could feel the effects of the storm Friday night and early Saturday.
Read more (via FoxNews): http://fxn.ws/2eMy7wW
While the forecast track currently has Irma going up the Atlantic side of Florida’s coast, should the Hurricane go further west and then come up the Gulf of Mexico and into the Panhandle, it could affect East Tennessee as it comes north. Please stay tuned over the weekend as Irma comes ashore and tracks up the coastline one side or the other of Florida.
Hurricane Jose is as of now a Category 1 storm, trekking along the same path as Irma, but predicted to go further north than Irma currently is going.
Hurricane Katia has formed in the Gulf of Mexico, and is forecast to make landfall in Mexico over the weekend, as it moves slowly southwest.
via WYFF TV: The [National] Hurricane Center says the storm is expected to bring torrential rains during the next few days primarily to the state of Veracruz, which spans along Mexico’s central Gulf coast.
Katia currently presents no threat to the US.
As now-Category 4 Hurricane Harvey bears down on his state, ARRL South Texas Section Manager Lee Cooper, W5LHC, reports that all 97 South Texas counties are on alert, with many preparing to assist coastal areas as needed. The Hurricane Watch Net (HWN) remains active in “Catastrophic Response Mode” on both 14.325 MHz and 7.268 MHz. The VoIP Hurricane Net activated today (connect at *WX_TALK* Echolink conference node: 7203/IRLP 9219. Stations on All-Star can connect to the Echolink side of the system by dialing *033007203). The Southern Territory SATERN Net will activate at least for one day on Saturday, from 0900 until 2000 CT on its regular frequency of 7.262 MHz. WX4NHC at the National Hurricane Center activated at 2100 UTC on Friday.
“Our West Gulf Division Communications Task Forces (Rapid Response Teams) are preparing for possible activation into any devastated areas,” Cooper told ARRL. “Several emergency operations centers (EOCs) are activated, and most others are on alert and preparing to activate as needed. The state EOC is activated and fully operational. Army MARS is ramping up and getting ready to deploy to assist in evacuations.”
At least 6 tornadoes hit the New Orleans area in Louisiana on Tuesday. East New Orleans was especially hard hit as hundreds of buildings were damaged or destroyed and over 10,000 customers were without power.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards has declared a state of emergency in the wake of the storms.
Videos of the tornadoes are being posted on social media:
MUST SEE: By far the craziest footage of the New Orleans tornado that we’ve seen yet! pic.twitter.com/tXahSbgm2g
— Tornado Trackers (@tornadotrackers) February 7, 2017
More incredible footage of the New Orleans tornado from earlier today. pic.twitter.com/0GKetgLULQ
— Tornado Trackers (@tornadotrackers) February 7, 2017
Exclusive video of a roof getting blown off, 18 wheeler flipping over off Cold Storage Rd pic.twitter.com/PmVGAJjbHa
— Katie Moore (@katiecmoore) February 7, 2017
The tornadoes also hit the NASA Michoud Assembly Facility as well:
— Mike Dross (@MikeWDross) February 7, 2017
The weather community is mourning the loss of Dave Schwartz, who spent more than 20 years as an on-air meteorologist for The Weather Channel. After battling cancer for 10 years, Schwartz passed away Saturday.
A Philadelphia native and graduate of Temple and Mississippi State universities, Schwartz always knew he wanted to be a meteorologist.
“I’ve always been a weather ‘geek’,” Schwartz said during an interview for his biography. “Skywatching, and watching The Weather Channel. I built a weather forecasting kit from Radio Shack my father bought me.”
Schwartz was known for his friendly on-air demeanor and often referred to viewers as “my friend” before giving forecasts. His laidback style and sense of humor quickly made him a fan favorite at The Weather Channel.
Read more: http://wxch.nl/2aAN1CH
A dock was destroyed after storms blew through Blount County Saturday afternoon.
A man at the scene said winds picked up the dock and ripped up the roof off the dock house at Mariner’s Pointe Club House off Keller Bend Road on Fort Loudoun Lake.
Read more: http://on.wbir.com/2aoHgbX
Severe thunderstorms that moved through East Tennessee Friday evening caused damage to several buildings in Seymour.
Photos submitted to WATE 6 On Your Side by viewer Matt Kiser showed damage at a Dollar General building on Chapman Highway. Photos showed damage to the roof and debris from other nearby buildings. A stained glass window blew out at nearby Seymour First Baptist Church and numerous broken and fallen trees were reported.
Read more: http://bit.ly/29wYJfT