Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Boating Safety -- Severe Weather Threatens Lake Erie

Would you be prepared it a storm of worst case struck while you were on the waters of Lake Erie?  It can and will happen again, that is a guarantee.  July 4th, 1969 a massive and powerful windstorm know as a Derecho blasted Lake Erie and the shore with winds to 100 mph.  This storm shattered the evening as thousands prepared for fireworks on the lake.  This storm capsized over 100 boats and killed 18 people in Ohio -- many of which drowned.

Lake Erie has already claimed the lives of 4 boaters this year, please take a few moments to review some of these safety tips before you do any boating this year.  Are you prepared?

2014 National Safe Boating Week
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US Coast Guard
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The National Weather Service Safe Boating
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Storm Prediction Center: About Derechos
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About the Ohio Fireworks Derecho -- July 4th, 1969

"During the afternoon of Friday, July 4, 1969, thunderstorms formed over southeast Lower Michigan (MI). As these storms moved southeastward during the early evening, a strong derecho evolved over extreme southeastern Michigan (MI) and Lake Erie (LE). The derecho then roared southeast across northern and eastern Ohio (OH) and western Pennsylvania (PA) during the next few hours. The hourly positions of the gust front (associated with multiple bow echoes) are shown in Figure 1 above. Winds gusted to 104 mph in Toledo ("T"), and reached 100 mph in the Cleveland ("C") area. In towns and cities near Lake Erie, many people were in parks getting ready to watch the Independence Day fireworks. Also for the occasion, many small boat owners had anchored their craft just off the Lake Erie shore line to watch the fireworks. As the derecho passed, many thousands of trees were blown down, including 5000 in Toledo alone. In the fireworks areas near the south shore of Lake Erie, eight people were killed by falling trees and over 100 boats were overturned, with three persons drowned. A total of 18 people were killed as a result of the derecho winds in Ohio."  -- Storm Prediction Center

Click here for more information about the Ohio Fireworks Derecho