Mother Nature hits West Union hard on 8/10/21

A LITTLE BEFORE 3:00 PM today (8/10/21,) I could hear a roaring in the distance. It sounded like sustained, rolling thunder. I figured a storm was brewing, so I ran outside and quickly pulled my car into the garage. As the door lowered, all of Mother Nature’s fury hit at once!

From within the garage, I could hear what sounded like the roaring of a jet engine accompanied by loud pelting overhead – it sounded like baseball-sized hail; but I soon realized it was not hail but rather walnuts slamming onto the roof.

I ventured out into the breezeway and watched for a second – the wind and rain surged until debris whizzed by in a horizontal line going west to east. I’d estimated the wind speed anywhere between 70-90 mph.

I peeked out the front of the breezeway towards the street only to see several huge downed limbs on the front lawn. I hustled to the back of the breezeway and peered to the north – same thing in the backyard – dozens of limbs down and water cascading off the roof.

The sustained fury lasted about 10 minutes. This system had started at about 3:00 PM and was pretty much done by 3:20 pm.

I haven’t heard officially what it was – a derecho, straight-line winds, microburst – whatever they call these things; but it was a sobering reminder of the unbridled fury that Mother Nature can unleash on a whim!

And it occurred a year to the day that the infamous 2020 derecho wreaked havoc on central Iowa.