A large tree was toppled along the backside of the Logan
County Safety Complex during the 'microburst' that affected
parts of central Lincoln on Tuesday morning.
Parts of Lincoln see damage from early
Clean up swift
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[July 09, 2014]
LINCOLN - Early Tuesday morning, about
2:30 a.m., most people slept as a rain storm with 20 mph winds came
Emergency Management Agency director Dan Fulscher had taken his
post Monday evening for an all-night watch as a rather large intense
storm system moved in from the west. He said Lincoln was on the
northern edge of the storm system and he couldn’t see that it was
going to be any big deal for us, but he waited anyway as it moved
He watched as a bow echo fell apart just to our west and thought we
would be out of the woods for anything damaging. Then about 2:39
a.m. a spot over Lincoln went bright red. Following that reports
started coming in about high winds, trees and lines down, and heavy
Fulscher said that a microburst let down in a line going through the
center of town.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's
National Weather Service, a microburst is “a convective downdraft
with an affected outflow area of less than 2-½ miles wide and peak
winds lasting less than 5 minutes. Microbursts may induce dangerous
horizontal/vertical wind shears, which can adversely affect aircraft
performance and cause property damage.”
So, while some areas of Lincoln were unaffected and most people
slept peacefully through a common summer rain storm; others,
specifically those who live in the areas bounded by Union to Keokuk
to Wyatt including Pekin, Hamilton and Beason Streets; things got a
lot more intense.
Winds in those areas abruptly whipped to 50 mph and a 1.3-inch rain
fell all at once.
Fulscher describes a microburst behavior like a water balloon and
when you stick a pin in it; it burst downward with lots of wind and
rain all at once.
Fulscher went out shortly after the event to assess what had
happened and check on residents in the affected area.
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Three major trees were felled, four to six-inch limbs were
snapped from many other trees downing power lines and causing
other property damages in the area. The abrupt volume rain
exceeded drains, and streets were flooded for a period; combined
with tree debris, street travel was hazardous and difficult.
Fulscher had high praises for the new city of Lincoln Streets
superintendent, Walt Landers and his team. He said Landers had
crews out working by 4 a.m. and they were mostly done by 8:30
a.m., to where most people could get to work. People would not
have known what a mess there was in the streets, he said. The
city crews continued to work until 10:30 a.m. “Walt did a great
job,” he said.
As the fresh rain-washed morning dawned, most of Lincoln looked
normal. Yet, in those areas affected by the “microburst,” just
across the street walks and lawns were strewn with shredded
leaves and broken branches. People continued the cleanup on
their property, which could take some days where larger branches
and trees came down.
[By JAN YOUNGQUIST]