The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

October 13, 2012

Weather spotters on alert today

Staff reports
Enid News & Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Today may be an active weather day, Garfield County Emergency Management Director Mike Honigsberg said, including the possibility of severe and tornadic storms.

The NWS forecast for Enid calls for a 70 percent chance of rain after 10 a.m. with a high of 81 and south wind at 14-20 mph gusting to 28 mph.

Honigsberg said emergency management directors in Oklahoma were advised by NWS meteorologists the timing of the storms will be a factor in their severity.

Honigsberg said storms likely would form in the afternoon, a condition that favors the development of supercells.

“Anytime mid-afternoon into the evening hours, it looks pretty volatile for us,” Honigsberg said.

He said the time frame for possible severe weather begins at about 2 p.m. and stretches into this evening.

The Enid and Garfield County storm spotter network has been placed on alert for today.

“We’ll wait and see what happens and what time it happens, and we’ll respond accordingly,” Honigsberg said.

He advised residents to stay weather aware.

NWS forecasts show weather moderating tonight, with a 40 percent chance of rain before 1 a.m. and a low around 50. Sunday’s forecast calls for sunny conditions, winds 8-13 mph and a high of 81.

NWS sends weather alert texts for counties through the Enid News & Eagle text service. Sign up HERE to receive severe weather or tornado warnings. It's free and you pick and edit your preferences.

More than 7,000 customers were without power briefly just after 6 a.m. Friday as a storm system blew through the area.

System Watch, OG&E Electric Services’ outage map, reported the Enid outages even as crews worked across the city attempted to restore power.

OG&E spokesman John Little said the storm damaged the main transmission line that feeds electricity to parts of the city, causing the large outage. He said electricity was restored to 5,500 customers in 15 minutes, and all but about 100 had power after 30 minutes. That number climbed back up to about 270 as crews worked to repair the feeder line on Cleveland.

Little said all OG&E customers had power restored by 11:30 a.m.

Teachers at McKinley Elementary School headed out to meet students Friday morning and lead them to darkened classrooms even as OG&E workers on the south side of the school worked on lines there.

Some homes around the school at 1701 W. Broadway witnessed the power blink off and on for several minutes before going out completely.

Portions of Cleveland were closed to traffic Friday morning while crews repaired downed power lines. Police received a call at about 6:15 a.m. about downed power lines on the road, and city street crews erected barricades.

The state’s Mesonet weather-recording station at Breckinridge showed the Enid area receiving 0.17 inches of rain as of 5:20 p.m. Friday, while the station south of Lahoma showed 0.05 inches. The station near Marshall recorded 1.14 inches of rain.

Farther west, the Woodward Mesonet site recorded 1.53 inches, and the Seiling site 1.45 inches.