Four tornadoes reported in Dallas County
Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 8, 2003
Frankie Rogers didn’t know there was a tornado warning in effect until he woke up Monday morning.
According to Bret Howard, Emergency Management Agency (EMA) director, Doppler radar showed four tornadoes in the Dallas County area early Monday morning. The wail of tornado sirens could be heard at 1 a.m., 2 a.m., 4 a.m. and 7 a.m.
Rogers, though, didn’t hear them as he slept through the night at his Selma residence. After waking around 5 a.m. he drove to his business &045;&045; Frank Rogers Country Store &045;&045; on U.S. Hwy 80 West and turned on the weather scanner, keeping an eye towards the west for any hint of a tornado.
But one never came.
Randy Pugh, chief deputy of the Dallas County Sheriff’s Office, said his department received two calls from 911 dispatch &045;&045; one from a citizen; the other from a member of a volunteer fire department.
One deputy was already in the area &045;&045; near Rogers’ store at the intersection of U.S. Hwy 80 West and County Rd. 45 &045;&045; on a routine patrol. Pugh said three more were sent out around 6:45 a.m. and began looking for signs of damage, but after two hours of searching none was found.
A tree was down over railroad tracks off County Rd. 21 south of Orrville, but Pugh said it was quickly removed Monday morning. Pugh added that no injuries or deaths had been caused by the storm.
Bret Howard, EMA director, agreed. He added that no property damage had been reported either.
Howard opened the emergency operations center on Sunday when the first tornado watches were being issued. At the center the weather situation was monitored and warnings issued through either the sirens or by phone.
The emergency operations center also coordinates responses by the Selma Fire Department, Police Department and Sheriff’s Office. If equipment such as sandbags was needed then Howard makes sure the proper department is alerted.
Howard couldn’t confirm a tornado actually touched down Monday morning, but did say it was possible one could have reached the ground and then immediately gone straight back up.
Michael Garrison, meteorologist with the National Weather Service, also couldn’t confirm reports of a tornado touching down in Dallas County.
Frankie Rogers wondered if there was ever a tornado to begin with.