Weather radios now required for Indiana mobile homes

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:36 PM GMT on April 27, 2007

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Mobile homes sold in the state of Indiana after June 30 this year must come equipped with a weather radio capable of alerting residents of an approaching tornado, thanks to a law signed by Indiana governor Mitch Daniels this week. The legislation, dubbed "C.J.'s Law", was named after 2-year old C.J. Martin, who died in a F3 tornado that killed 25 people in southwestern Indiana on November 6, 2005. Twenty of the victims lived in the Eastbrook Mobile Home Park in Evansville. The storm hit at 2am, when many residents were asleep and didn't hear the tornado sirens. C.J.'s mother, Kathryn Martin, pushed lawmakers to adopt the bill, pointing out that weather radios with a tone alert system could have saved many lives in the mobile home park.

This type of law makes great sense for mobile homes sold in tornado alley--think of it as a companion to your smoke detector in the house. Mobile home residents make up just 7% of the U.S. population, but account for 40% of the deaths in tornadoes. However, there are a number of issues that may make the law ineffective. Firstly, what type of weather radio will be purchased? There are many poor quality units out there, prone to radio interference, and difficult to program (weather radios require the user to input a special SAME code, needed to issue tone alerts when a tornado warning is issued). Secondly, the NWS sends out weekly or monthly test alerts on weather radio--how many mobile home owners will simply turn off their weather radios because they are sick of hearing the regular tests? Or turn them off after a few false alarms wake them up in the middle of the night for tornadoes that appear on Doppler radar, but never touch down? Thirdly, once the residents of a mobile home park are awakened by an alert, where do they go? Indiana, like most states, has no law requiring mobile home parks to have a tornado shelter. However, there is now Federal money available for mobile home parks to construct tornado shelters, so the number of parks with shelters may increase in coming years. In summary, the law has the potential to save lives--but only if it is properly enacted.

Figure 1. Damage to C.J. Martin's mobile home park near Evansville, Indiana due to the November 6, 2005 tornado. Image credit: Paducah, KY NWS.

Jeff Masters

Indiana/Kentucky Tornado - Ellis Race Track Backside 3 (Soniknate)
A close-up of the damage to the apartments, horse stalls, and other objects. People cleaning up debris in photo.
Indiana/Kentucky Tornado - Ellis Race Track Backside 3

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267. hurricane23
6:24 PM EDT on April 29, 2007
No hint of any kind of circulation especially at the surface.Maybe possible in the next 4-5 weeks.
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13839
266. stormpetrol
10:21 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Thanks Kmanislander, I'm new and still a bit confused but getting there, I'm just taking note of certain features like the very low tide in South Sound where I live, also the changing winds so abrubtly, In March we had strong winds out of the south for a few days which is rare, now they are switching all around!!Strange.What do you think? Are you noticing similiar patterns too?
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265. kmanislander
10:22 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
I don't see anything here that looks like a low

Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15846
264. kmanislander
10:19 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Hi Stormpetrol

I too live on Grand Cayman. Have not seen you on here before so welcome. Are you new to the blog ?
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15846
263. stormpetrol
10:14 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Is There is a hint of a low level circulation north of Panama or not. I live in Grand Cayman and the weather pattern here to me in my personal observation seems very much like 2004, I couldn't take another Ivan!
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262. louisianaboy444
10:06 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
What is making everyone think that we will have an early start to the season when it offically starts in june...Not sounding rude but i seriously dont know can someone explain
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260. StormJunkie
9:01 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Afternoon all.

23, The Gulf SSTs and the W Atl are actually cooler then they were last year this time. Still warmer then '05 though. Now the C and W Atl and are warmer.
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16874
257. weathermanwannabe
4:54 PM EDT on April 29, 2007
Just took a break and came back....Why is everything green?; nevermind.........
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9321
255. hurricaneman23
8:31 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
sst are warmer this year than last year
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254. FLARV
8:27 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Is it just my wishful thinking, or are SSTs actually cooler in the atlantic than this time last year?
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253. weathermanwannabe
4:23 PM EDT on April 29, 2007
Dak; I used to live in South Florida and I agree with the "missed call" on the early release of the water..However, as a fisherman, I loved the water releases cause the Snook went crazy at the inlets and passes..
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9321
252. Levi32
12:18 PM AKDT on April 29, 2007
louisianaboy444 - I think we all get a little jittery when the first little waves start to come across, but honestly I can 99.9% guarantee that nothing will develop this week considering the conditions. That "wave" you guys have been tracking isn't even a low, or a real wave for that matter.
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251. louisianaboy444
7:48 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
that wave south of jamica is the one that has held together for the past 2 doesnt look like much but shows signs of some spin to it....does this have a chance to develop further or am i just a little to over excited
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250. Dakster
7:18 PM GMT on April 29, 2007

From your lips to god's ears on the slow season. Although, a "slow" season where I get hit with one hurricane, is still a bad year for me.

I see that as proenza states, we are learning, since Hurricane preparedness week is a little earlier now in May instead of June. I remember the hurricane preparedness fair in 2005. The first storm was threatening before the fair...

About South Florida, no rain in sight, drought, fires, and water restrictions... Blame the SFWMD (South Florida Water Management District). Apparently they decided last year to release billions of gallons of water out of Lake Okeechobe becuase it was supposed to be an acive season and they worried about flooding. I know hindsight is 20/20, but they did this in 2000/2001 the last round of water restrictions. The same forecast, the same thing happened. Granted, this is better than the Dikes failing along the Lake, but you'd hope they wouldn't drop the Lake like in 2000. I won't second guess the experts, but someone has to come up with a better way to do this. Instead of dike failure, we may lose our potable water supply which could be just as devastating as the Dike failures. Today's Miami Herald had a nice article about it.

So if the Hurricane Gods are listening, NO HURRICANES, but feel free to send a bunch of rain our way.
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249. HurricaneRoman
6:14 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Dry May= Higher chance of hurricane strike...... On several websites i read that dry mays here in South florida usually have hurricane strikes.... like in 04, 92 , and a couple others...... I thought this was very intresting ...
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248. Skyepony (Mod)
5:49 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Actually the shear tendecy map has the shear in color with the key to that on the side. Solid yellow lines (increasing) & the dotted blue lines (decreasing) tells how much the shear has risen or fallen in the last 3 hours.

What you don't want to confuse with shear is the stearing currents map. (3rd down in Taz's maps post.) That has how fast the air is moving & direction for that particuclar layer of air.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 191 Comments: 38624
247. hurricane23
1:44 PM EDT on April 29, 2007
Becareful not to confuse shear tendency maps with wind shear.Shear tendency maps only indicate where shear is increasing or decreasing, they do not indicate the amount of shear across the overall tropics.Adrian
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13839
246. HurricaneRoman
4:50 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Whoa! I saw this video on youttube of Hurricane Charley cat.4 .... look at the continuous debris flying.... and all those roofs everywheres its crazy...... with how old my roof is would be no match for something like this or a 3.....
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245. moonlightcowboy
4:48 PM GMT on April 29, 2007

...May "smelling" early???
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244. stormchasher
11:10 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
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243. stormchasher
11:09 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Thanks Taz!!!:)
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242. lightning10
7:53 AM PDT on April 29, 2007
I will have my forcast soon. I am going to say it again however I just have a good fealing this season will not be the major active season everyone thinks it will be.
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240. HurricaneRoman
2:56 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
ah! when is it gonna rain here ...... its ridiculous... forecast here: no rain chances higher than 20 percent for at least the next 7 days ....(south florida) ..... it hasnt rained in a bout a month
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239. Patrap
9:26 AM CDT on April 29, 2007
.. "Preparation through education is less costly than learning through tragedy."

This year Hurricane Preparedness Week is May 20-26, 2007
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238. stormchasher
10:24 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Wow May 21st really detailed!
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237. stormchasher
10:21 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Heres my forecast

1) 17-19 storms(not including depressions)
2) 9-10 Hurricanes 2-3 land falling
3) 4-6 Intense hurricanes ( cat 3- 4 )
4) 1-2 Cat 5 ( 2 If its a strong La Nina )

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236. StoryOfTheCane
2:20 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
I think May 21st will be the first named system, second being June 2nd
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235. StoryOfTheCane
2:19 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
how many do you guys expect to see this year?
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234. MZT
2:14 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
Last year we had two "tropical lows" before Alberto that rode up the east coast. We debated on here whether they merited being called depressions.

So we'll probably see the same thing in May/June. A few invests that could *possibly* be an early start to the season, but aren't.

That's what "normal years" are like. In 2004 and 2005, it seemed like anything with the potential to develop... did.
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233. stormchasher
10:18 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Hey pat, what do u see in your crystal ball??
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231. weathermanwannabe
10:16 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Have a good morning all; I'm off to church....
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9321
230. stormchasher
10:13 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
yeah that seems about right.
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229. StoryOfTheCane
2:13 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
My Predictions:

Right now I think we're looking at 19 storms, 13 hurricanes, 7 major hurricanes and 7 landfalls.

Gabrielle, Humberto, Jerry, Lorenzo, Melissa, Olga and Pablo are going to be our majors.
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228. weathermanwannabe
10:10 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Not sure what will happen in the long-term but I am pretty certain that we may see 1-2 tropical storms form before June 1st
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9321
227. stormchasher
10:10 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
So StoryOfTheCane, whats your feeling on the H-season??
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226. StoryOfTheCane
2:09 PM GMT on April 29, 2007
shear is pretty normal right now, we'd probably see 28 storms this season if shear was favorable right now as opposed to the 20+ we'll see regardless.
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225. stormchasher
10:08 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Yeah with the exception of wind shear and moisture conditions are right.
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224. stormchasher
10:08 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Oh ok Taz thanks:)
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223. weathermanwannabe
10:01 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Conditions are ripe for TS formation early into the season with the exception of the shear and the relative lack of moisture; we will have to see what happens with the shear in the next two weeks..
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9321
220. stormchasher
9:56 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Heres the shear forecast.....Link Not really favorable for development at all!!
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219. stormchasher
9:50 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Dakster, yeah your right, it has been more than 4, also i REALLY dont think that anything will form because if you look at the wind shear maps there way to high for any development!! Another thing I have a funny felling about this season because the GFS never used to even predict tropical development!
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218. Dakster
1:46 PM GMT on April 29, 2007

I think you are under estimating. It predicted 4 TS last week. What's up with the GFS? It didn't seem to be as unreliable in past years as it has been lately?

Maybe that is just my imagination... I hope this is NOT the sign of a hectic hurricane season like 2005.

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217. stormchasher
9:36 AM EDT on April 29, 2007
Nice job with the blog thunder:) I like it alot:)
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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