Spring signals start of tornado season

Tonjia Rolan Spring is a little more than a week away. So is the start of tornado season on the High Plains. Eastern New Mexico spawns 75 percent of the state’s thunderstorms that produce tornadoes, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration website. The state sees about 10 twisters a year and thunderstorm and […]

Tornado reports cause for concern

Tornadoes and reports of them make us nervous. That’s because residents in eastern New Mexico and the Texas Panhandle have either experienced the storms’ violence or at least seen the debris remnants that immediately show us their horrific power. AccuWeather.com is warning Americans that today could be ripe for large tornado outbreaks across multiple states […]

Clovis tykes pitch in for tornado relief effort

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Liliana Castillo While listening to his mother talk about a family they knew who lost their home in the tornado that hit Joplin, Mo., 6-year-old Landon Mihalik had an idea. He had a lemonade stand at one of his family’s yard sales and raised money for a hospital in Durango, Colo., in need two years […]

Joplin tornado destroys former Portales residents’ home

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Alisa Boswell Past Portales residents and Portales High School graduates Justin and Kari (Thompson) Nevins lost their family home in Joplin, Mo., on Sunday when an EF5 tornado hit the city, destroying multiple homes and killing 125 people. Kari Nevins said her family went into the house cellar after hearing the second tornado siren and […]

Reader-submitted content: ENMU student starts tornado relief effort

Robin Haislett Lawrence Baker, an Eastern New Mexico University senior communications student from Portales and Dumas, Texas, is spearheading an effort to donate goods to the children impacted by the devastating tornado that decimated Joplin, Mo. Baker lived near Joplin, Mo. for a few years. While watching the news he was shocked “to just see […]

City to start testing tornado sirens

Alisa Boswell Beginning today, Portales will be testing its tornado sirens at noon every first and third Thursday of the month to ensure the city’s mass notification system is fully operational and all Roosevelt County residents are able to hear alerts. “We want to make sure our equipment is functioning and we are doing it […]

Clovis native recalls Alabama tornado

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Russell Anglin Delaney Ware said she is lucky to be alive today. The 19-year-old University of Alabama freshman nursing student and 2010 Clovis High School graduate said a devastating tornado barely missed her campus in Tuscaloosa, Ala. last night. She spoke to Freedom New Mexico on Thursday afternoon by phone about the tornado. Ware is […]

At least one ‘small’ tornado spotted in Curry County

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Freedom New Mexico Roosevelt County had two tornado warnings during Tuesday’s storms, but no twisters or major damage was reported. “Nothing really developed out of either warning … I think we’re OK right now,” said local Emergency Management Director Keith Wattenbarger. During the afternoon, Milnesand had lightning and a grassfire of less than an acre […]

Preparation key in tornado season

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By Clarence Plank: Freedom New Mexico Experts say certain weather conditions can spawn violent storms and tornadoes anytime and anywhere across eastern New Mexico. The last major tornado touched down in March 2007, several weeks before the usual tornado season, according to the National Weather Service. Emergency management directors in Curry and Roosevelt counties say […]

Portales Past: May 18, 1955

May 18, 1955: A tornado struck Melrose about noon, scattering debris from a broomcorn storage warehouse over two miles. Witnesses in Growdon’s Cafe, about 50 yards away, reported seeing the tornado lift the warehouse about 20 feet off the ground before tearing it to splinters.

Tornado warnings should be taken seriously

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By Helena Rodriguez: PNT columnist Twister season is here. While I’ve never been in immediate danger of a tornado, I’ve had frightening experiences, especially when I think of unheeded warnings. I remember visiting grandparents in Lubbock during a 1970s storm when I was a child. My parents, uncles and aunts went dancing. Unknown to them, […]

Tornado aftermath still lingers

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By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer Jim Blevins refers to his home and neighborhood as ground zero. The tornado that ripped through it is three years gone. The daily reminders aren’t. Jim and Iris Blevins’ home on South Prince Street was in the path of the March 23, 2007, tornado that killed two — Jim’s […]

Official: Evidence of 2007 tornado still visible

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By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico Two years ago today, many residents were greeted by sights of destruction and debris when they emerged from their homes in the aftermath of the worst tornado to hit the area in at least 43 years. The March 23, 2007, tornado killed two elderly residents, affected about 500 homes […]

Clovis woman charged with embezzling tornado relief funds

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By Gabriel Monte: Freedom New Mexico A 40-year-old Clovis woman has been charged with embezzling more than $145,000 in tornado relief funds, according to a press release Monday from the district attorney’s office. Lori Howard, a former project manager for Eastern Plains Council of Government, is charged with 34 counts of fraud, 24 counts of […]

Tornado watch expires

A tornado watch for Curry and Roosevelt counties has been canceled, and is now a severe thunderstorm warning until 5 a.m. Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service in Albuquerque.

Roosevelt County under tornado watch

The National Weather Service has issued a tornado watch for the counties of Roosevelt, Curry and Lea counties until 9 p.m. on Tuesday. A tornado watch means that the conditions exist for a tornado to develop.

Roosevelt County under tornado warning

PNT Staff Report Roosevelt County was placed under a tornado warning by the National Weather Service at 7:12 p.m. Monday. The warning continues until 8 p.m. Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Office personnel said fire department personnel had spotted a possible funnel cloud in a storm near Elida. No confirmation of a tornado has been made, though. […]

Planning key in dealing with disaster

By Ken De Los Santos While the tornado of 2007 remains fresh on our minds, I would like to ask, “Are you prepared for another? With severe weather, you can never let your guard down. The main purpose of this article is to educate on preparation for any type of disaster. There are four main […]

Storm recovery joint effort

By Janet Bresenham, Freedom New Mexico The first anniversary of the March 23, 2007, tornado that struck eastern New Mexico with such destructive force falls on Easter Sunday. For some people involved in helping survivors rebuild their lives and homes in the tornado’s aftermath, that seems fitting, said the Rev. Lance Clemmons, chairman of the […]

58th Jamboree gets picking Thursday

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By Helena Rodriguez, PNT Staff Writer Not even a tornado could keep people away from the annual Floyd Country Jamboree last year, but attendance was noticeably down in 2007 when twisters struck Curry, Roosevelt and Quay counties on March 23. Last year’s jamboree ran from March 21-25, with the tornadoes striking on the Friday night […]