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                   Saturday, March 14, 2009 - 4:08PM

Busy day at the bridge, 2009 chase plans

By DAN ROBINSON
Editor/Photographer
25 Years of Storm Observing
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LINK: Kanawha County Metro 911 calls

All of those calls marked milepost 58 on I-64 are at the Carter/Oakwood/Fort Hill bridge, which has been seeing accidents with EMS/police response about once every hour since the rain started this morning. That is nearly on par with what I see when the bridge is iced over. Most spinouts and minor crashes at the bridge don't get called in (drivers just keep going if they are able), so it's probable that there have been more than the ones listed. A 911 call usually means there is a non-driveable damaged vehicle in the road and/or injuries. The fact that there have been four calls to the bridge since light rain started is very unusual, but not really surprising. FYI the "58 I-64 East" call listed at 1:46AM yesterday (scroll some down the page) was the one involving the minivan that I captured yesterday morning.

I have too much web site work to do this afternoon to go and see what's going on up there now. Standing out in cold rain is worse than snow.

2009 Plains trip plans

There is good news and bad news for my annual weather expedition to the Plains this year. The bad news is that my tour reservation for late May had to tentatively cancel due to the guest's work conflicts. I have not pushed/advertised my tour services at all, as I've been reluctant to sink money into it. Consequently I don't expect to be running any tours unless something pops up at the last minute. The good news is I now have a reliable vehicle that I know I can take on a weather expedition worry-free. That, coupled with doable gas prices (as long as they don't rise too much), might make a short trip during a nice southwest flow, multi-day outbreak setup a possibility. My tax season is becoming a major annual expense, and therefore the 'wild card' that will determine if I have any funds for a trip. So, I won't make a decision about observing until tax season is done and May rolls around.

C'mon Dan. We're not falling for it. Gas is a buck sixty seven in Oklahoma right now (and trending down). You haven't seen that since 2004. You have a new vehicle to observe storms with and all the paid for toys to take with you. The cumulonimbus will start forming out west when dewpoints and temps start to rise as they do every spring. You will succumb to it. I'd be willing to risk money on it. Anybody want to bet against it?
- Posted by John from Texas
Yeah, if the money's in the bank, you're probably right :) But unfortunately Uncle Sam will be making that determination for me - we'll see what happens once my accountant crunches the numbers.
- Posted by Dan R. from Charleston, WV

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