Ficial Story Of The Tornado Essay

Ficial Story Of The Tornado Essay

Length: 1219 words (3.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The “official story” of the tornado is a composite of assertions from public officials and media outlets, collected data from multiple relief agencies, and recalled details of the citizenry. This story developed from the ongoing, dialogical process of storytelling, combining details from many sources, and distilling the information into the key themes shared in the majority of tales, while stripping most individual stories from the overall account.
For approximately 38 minutes, beginning at 5:34 pm and ending 6:12 pm on May 22, 2011, Joplin, Missouri was brutally hit by a multi-vortex, EF-5 tornado. Tearing a mile-wide, 13-mile path through the city, the tornado destroyed over 7,500 homes, 18,000 vehicles, numerous churches and schools, injured over 1,000 people, and claimed 161 lives (Onstot 2013). The tornado damaged communications towers, electrical facilities, one of the two area hospitals, and several fire stations, hindering survivors’ ability to evacuate, find emergency assistance, or contact loved ones (Onstot 2013; Bartow 2012; Rohr 2012).
As emergency services from Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Kansas rushed to assist, the Joplin citizens initialized rescue without waiting for outside aid. Often rescued became rescuer as neighbors pulled one another from the rubble (Turner and Hacker 2011). The severely injured were rushed to Freeman Medical in the back of battered pick-up trucks while non-critical injuries were ignored to join in searching for trapped survivors (Rohr 2012).
In the following months, the media changed from talk of tragedy to amazement and praise. Awarded the Rick Rescorla National Award for Resilience (DHS Press 2012) and praised by President Obama, Missouri Governor Nixon, Director of Homeland S...

... middle of paper ...

...ntly, were blood, drywall, ozone, and mud. Many claimed the culmination of factors, the unique synthesis and signature smell, was completely imbued in the strange sludge which coated every surface after the storm. This sludge consisted of the pulverized remains of plants, structures, and anything pulled into the vortex of 200 mile per hour winds.
The power of smell to summon the experiential memories of the tornado, causing survivors to relive the trauma rather than merely recall it, complicated the material aspect of the recovery process. Countless citizens, aided by volunteers, combed through the rubble of homes to retrieve as much personal property as possible. While survivors initially rejoiced at finding mementos of their pre-tornado life, several later lamented that the horrible smell so permeated recovered items that they eventually discarded many items.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

What Makes A Tornado? Essay

- What is a tornado. Our textbook defines a tornado as a violently rotating column of air in contact with the ground that is usually produced by a thunderstorm. Tornados are something that we, as Midwesterners, have heard about our whole lives, and sometimes even grown up with. But there is much more to learn about tornados than just the movie Twister. Tornados have relation to Chapter 1: Monitoring the Weather, Chapter 8: Wind & Weather, and, of course, Chapter 11: Thunderstorms and Tornados. First, I would like to discuss with you the basic facts of tornados....   [tags: Wind, Tornado, Meteorology, Thunderstorm]

Better Essays
1191 words (3.4 pages)

Tornadoes And Its Impact On The Tornado Essay examples

- A tornado is defined as being a mobile, destructive vortex of violently rotating winds having the appearance of a funnel-shaped cloud and advancing beneath a large storm system.(SPC) Although tornadoes usually only last for a few minutes, they can be very destructive and deadly. The average wind speed in most tornadoes is about one hundred and twelve miles per hour or less.(SPC) The most violent tornadoes are capable of massive destruction with their wind speed reaching two hundred and fifty miles per hour.(SPC) The damage path of a tornado can be more than one mile wide and fifty miles long.(SPC) In a normal year, more than eight hundred tornadoes are reported across the United States with...   [tags: Tornado, Wind, Thunderstorm, Fujita scale]

Better Essays
1715 words (4.9 pages)

A Tornado Is The Most Unpredictable Works Of Nature Essay

- A tornado is one of the most unpredictable works of nature; it can strike with very little warning. It is also very destructive and dangerous. Have you ever wondered how something like this forms or what causes it. Do you know what you can do to prepare yourself for a tornado. I’m going to answer all of this, along with other questions you may be asking yourself. First of all, I 'm going to give you some basic information on tornadoes. A tornado is a strong column of wind rotating around a center of low atmospheric pressure....   [tags: Tornado, Thunderstorm, Supercell]

Better Essays
1413 words (4 pages)

The Tri State Tornado Essay

- ... 2013, April 25). This deadly storm struck in an ERA before Doppler Radar and other modern technologies and forecasters had to rely on witness accounts of the storm to determine its path and times it was on the ground. In 1925 there was no warning systems set up to warn people in advance of a storm. The lack of communication technologies prevented the ability to warn other communities even when it did strike. Although the Fujita Tornado Damage scale did not exist in that era it would have been classified as an F5 tornado....   [tags: Tornado, Thunderstorm, Storm, Fujita scale]

Better Essays
706 words (2 pages)

Essay on The Worst Tornado that Hit Pennsylvania in 1985

- Some say that the tornado of 1985 will forever go down in history as one of the worst natural disasters that have ever occurred in Pennsylvania (Forbes). In reportedly a matter of a few seconds for some towns, the tornado, stubbornly set on its path of destruction, swept through many towns. Despite how long the tornado may had taken to virtually obliterate them, the result was always the same, maximum damage and death (Haas). The ramifications of the tornado caused severe property damage and casualties, which amplified the dire need for aid and forced those who had lost their homes to quickly realize that actions needed to be taken....   [tags: tornadoes, albion tornado, natural disaster]

Better Essays
1739 words (5 pages)

The National Oceanic And Atmospheric Administration Defines A Tornado Essay

- Tornadoes may not be the first hazard that is thought of when you think of Eastern North Carolina, but they do happen here fairly often. The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration defines a tornado as “a narrow, violently rotating column of air that extends from the base of a thunderstorm to the ground.” (NOAA) Tornadoes can catch people off guard and lead to severe injuries or death. Tornadoes can range from mild to extremely violent. They occur in many parts of the world and the United States....   [tags: Tornado, Wind, Severe weather, Thunderstorm]

Better Essays
1062 words (3 pages)

Speech on Tornados

- Outline for Informative Speech Your name Tornadoes Purpose: To inform the audience about tornadoes. Thesis: In order to better understand tornadoes, it is important to explore what causes tornadoes to develop, how researchers classify types of tornadoes, and odd occurrences that may be associated with tornadoes. Organizational Pattern: Topical I. Introduction A. Attention Getter: What can hurdle automobiles through the air, rip ordinary homes to shreds, defeather chickens, and travel at speeds over 60 mph....   [tags: Tornado Natural Disasters]

Free Essays
1671 words (4.8 pages)

Behind Ficial Story By James C. Scott Essay

- ... If you really think about the only time when we have power and are away from Hidden transcripts is when we are in are homes, where we have power. Hidden Transcripts are things where you can be yourself in your own home and have the power to act and dress as you please without the power of authority hanging over your heads. In Nafisi talks about in her book how she would have a secret book meetings in her home. How she was shocked by her friends when they would undress from there black curtains of a dress and appear with colorful clothes and makeup on their faces....   [tags: Reading Lolita in Tehran, Azar Nafisi]

Better Essays
940 words (2.7 pages)

Essay on tornado

- Tornadoes A tornado is a violently rotating column of air that extends from a thunderstorm cloud to the earth’s surface. They are sometimes nicknamed twisters because of their shape and because of what they do. The winds in the tornadoes are usually 100mph or less. In +F4's they can exceed 250mph. They usually stay on a track of a few miles or less and are less than 100 yds. wide. For the development of tornadoes there are a few conditions required. An abundant low-level of moisture and unstable atmosphere is required not only for the tornado, but for a thunderstorm also....   [tags: essays research papers]

Better Essays
984 words (2.8 pages)

Tornado Essay

- Tornado When a tornado forms or passes over a water surface, it is termed a waterspout. Like tornadoes, they may assume many shapes and often occur in series or families. Measurements of their forward speeds are scarce, but estimates vary from a few kilometers an hour to as high as 64 to 80 kilometers per hour. Contrary to popular opinion, a waterspout does not "suck up" water to great heights; though it may lift the water level a few meters. The main visible cloud consists mostly of freshwater clouds produced by condensation of water vapor; however, a sheath of spray often rotates around the lower portion of the vortex tube....   [tags: Papers]

Free Essays
467 words (1.3 pages)