If you watch TV and see some graphic of a “slight risk” for severe weather over our area for Friday afternoon and night, here’s the deal. We will become much more warm and humid. The upper low we’ve been talking about wandering from east to west will lift up and out to the northeast in advance of a frontal boundary. The boys at the severe storm lab are concerned about the potential for little waves of energy scooting down along the boundary as it presses southeast. The idea is that if these guys do materialize they could blow up into storms in the Midwest and then migrate down our way. We will have a fair amount of energy to work with by then and we may become much more unstable so if one of these little trouble makers does come through in a timely manner, then there would be sufficient available energy to sustain some pretty good storms. Typically, the biggest risk in this type of environment would be small hail and pockets of high winds in individual t’storms. The tornado risk would be limited to small scale situations where a little, brief spin up occurs in a cell merger or perhaps on the edge of a bow echo. In other words, the set up could yield a similar circumstance as we had last week. Don’t get too alarmed though. If you notice, I used the word “if” several times. These little waves are tough to pick out and even tougher to time. Odds are they will be there but the exact timing and placement of those waves will determine where and if we get anything exciting. You know we’ll let you know. Watch our news and keep up on wlky.com and we’ll let you know how it shakes out.
On This Date In History: It wasn’t supposed to be able to happen. Modern ships. Modern communications. Modern radar. A huge Atlantic Ocean. Yet, two ships managed to run into one another on the high seas off the coast of Nantucket. At 11:10 pm the Swedish liner Stockholm and Italian Liner Adrea Doria collided in heavy fog. The Italians(over 1700 passengers) were coming from Europe to New York while the Swedes(just under 750 passengers) were headed home from the New World. The Stockholm was traveling a bit north of its recommended route in an effort to save time. Fog was thick. The Doria had a much more sophisticated radar and picked up the Stockholm at a distance of 17 miles. The Stockholm radar operator picked up the Doria at 12 miles. Like the Stockholm, the Doria was trying to keep its schedule and only slightly reduced speed in spite of the reduced visibility. So, both Captains seemed to have sacrificed safety in the name of speed.
Apparently, the normal procedure for ships passing was port to port. But for some reason, the Italian Captain decided to turn port and make an unconventional starboard to starboard passage. It is thought the Italian Captain thought that the Swede was doing the same thing. Why these guys didn’t get on the radio and talk about it is a mystery. Or maybe they did and there was a language barrier. Whatever the case, the two slammed into each other. The Stockholm had a reinforced, ice breaker bow and just sliced the Doria. The Stockholm sustained damage and a handful of crew members died. Nearly 50 passengers and crew died on the Doria as the ice-breaker bow cut into passenger quarters. One man watched in horror as his wife was dragged out of the Doria never to be seen again. But one story caught the attention of the press and forever dubbed 14 year-old Linda Morgan as the “the miracle girl.” Morgan was taken from her bunk on the Doria as the two ships separated. She was found on board the Stockholm. I do not think she was charged with being a stow away.
The Doria listed badly so only half of her lifeboats were available for evacuation. The Stockholm though lowered its boats and other liners in the area quickly answered the doomed Doria’s mayday call. It is the greatest maritime rescue in the annals of history with 1660 souls plucked from the sea.
Here is the Bob Symon/ Ward Cleaver moral to this story: You can have the most sophisticated top-shelf equipment and technology in the world. But if you’ve got a doofus operating that stuff, its worthless. Now the self-serving but honest plug: Remember that when choosing which channel to watch next time there is severe weather and you really want to know what is going on.