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Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Yes, St. Louis, You Can Ignore that Tornado Alert that Happened Today

Posted By on Tue, Mar 2, 2021 at 12:43 PM

click to enlarge It's ain't like this out there. - ANTHONY / FLICKR

All across St. Louis people squinted at the sky in a collective “WTF” this morning as a tornado alert lit up local phones.

It was a bright, sunny, clear blue day, so this alert was met with nothing but confusion and was followed by many posts on social media expressing concern. Was a twister just over the next hill? Should we head to the basement? And if severe weather was so close, why do all the birds and pets still seem to be behaving normally?

Here in the Midwest, we’re used to wild weather and conditions changing on a dime, but we looked up at the sky and most of us knew that the alert had to be a mistake.

Everything looked fine outside and today isn’t even the first Monday of the month (the day when sirens are tested), so the majority of us shrugged it off and went about our day. Our instincts told us this alert was all wrong — and we were right.

The US National Weather Service in St. Louis sent out an apology just an hour or so ago, saying that the warning was an accident.

Good morning folks! There has been a good deal of confusion this morning with our test of the tornado warning system as...

Posted by US National Weather Service Saint Louis Missouri on Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Or to paraphrase the National Weather Service: "Ope! My bad!"

It’s cool, NWS, we forgive you. Everybody messes up sometimes and we know you’re always trying your best to keep us safe. Most of us are just glad to know that the system will work when activated on purpose.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac predicts a stormy spring season ahead, so maybe we should all take the advice of the NWS and review our severe weather safety procedures. (And buy some new rain boots.)

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