The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

September 20, 2013

Storms bring needed rain to area

OTTUMWA — The first significant rains in more than a month arrived on the same day as a new report that underscored the effects of this summer's drought. Nature, it seems, is not without a sense of humor.

Storms raked Iowa Thursday night. Ottumwa officially saw .45 inches of rain, though amounts varied considerably. Locations around Ottumwa received well over a half-inch of rain. Preliminary totals showed almost an inch falling in Centerville and Oskaloosa, while two-thirds of an inch fell in Bloomfield.

Severe thunderstorm warnings were issued for almost every area county, with strong winds knocking out power to hundreds. At its peak, more than 800 customers in Jefferson County were without power.

Winds near the Oskaloosa airport exceeded 60 mph as the storms passed through and a gust of 50 mph hit What Cheer. Trees 4-6 inches in diameter were toppled, according to damage reports. Ottumwa saw less damage, but it was still enough to take down some power lines.

Most of the damage appeared to be centered on the Des Moines area, where more than 10,000 customers remained without power Friday morning. The windstorm created damage equivalent to EF0 and EF1 tornadoes, though there were no reports of any tornadoes actually touching down.

The rain was entirely welcome for a state with almost three-quarters of its area in moderate drought. The U.S. Drought Monitor released a new map Thursday morning that showed a wide swath of the state, including almost all of southeast Iowa, in severe drought. The report includes data up to Tuesday.

The conditions were virtually unchanged from the previous week. The situation has worsened considerably in the past month. While the rain will help, it's not clear how much. A report focusing on crop conditions due Monday from the U.S. Department of Agriculture is the next important measure.

There doesn't appear to be much relief on the horizon. The Climate Prediction Center expects drought to persist through the end of the year.

 

1
Text Only
Local News
  • A change at Evans OTTUMWA — You can get kids to memorize facts. But teaching them to think can take more time. Educational leaders told the Ottumwa school board that the school year that begins 2014 will shift Evans Middle School students from 45-minute periods to 60-

    April 17, 2014

  • 0418 OTT Tree City U.S.A. logo Ottumwa awarded as Tree City U.S.A. again OTTUMWA — Having big, beautiful trees throughout a community can help spruce up a city and make it more attractive to visitors. Ottumwa has shown a dedication to making the community more green and inviting, and the efforts have been recognized by th

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0418 OTT Agriculture Day color photo 2 -T -L -M Cardinal students celebrate Ag Day ELDON — Sometimes the best way to learn is to get out of the classroom and come face-to-face with things that you might not see every day. Students at Cardinal Elementary School got that chance Thursday during Ag Day. Every year, the Cardinal FFA and

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0418 OTT Five Things logo -T -L -M Five things to do in southeast Iowa this weekend OTTUMWA — It's a weekend of Easter celebrations, historic events and educational opportunities in southeast Iowa. Many people are gathered together this weekend, and the surrounding communities have scheduled events perfect for the whole family. 1. S

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0418 OTT Joe Tafta bw photo -L -T -M Pursuing opportunities OTTUMWA — Joe Tafta follows the rules. The Simpson College junior hopes to be a U.S. marshal one day, so he’s careful about what he says and does. But not always. On the afternoon of April 1, Tafta says, he nearly got booted out of Dunn Library for m

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0418 OTT OEDC director -T Guiding our growth OTTUMWA — An organization designed to help Ottumwa grow has found a new employee in Indiana. The Ottumwa Economic Development Corporation (OEDC) board has chosen Sharon Stroh as the group's new executive director. “We are confident she will hit the g

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0417 OTT Earth day color photo 1 -T -M Cargill celebrates Earth Day by educating ALBIA — In honor of Earth Day on Tuesday, April 22, employees from Cargill Eddyville and Cargill Pork are visiting with students at Grant Elementary and Lincoln Center in Albia all this week. On Wednesday the Courier caught up with them as they went

    April 16, 2014 3 Photos

  • 0417 OTT Saving Center color photo -T -L -M Hedrick building has friends HEDRICK — The community wants a civic center, and they've been willing to work for it. "I'd say we have 15 to 25 volunteers each time," Tommy Smith of Hedrick said. "These are all good people." Smith was volunteering his services at the Easter Brunch

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Southern Iowa farmers preparing for planting OTTUMWA — Even though the winter seemed to linger like Iowa was going through an ice age and cold and wet weather has highlighted the early spring, farmers are starting to get out to their fields to put down fertilizer and get fields ready for planti

    April 16, 2014

  • 0417 OTT Camp Wapello fence photo -T -M -L Good fence irritates good neighbor DRAKESVILLE — For 82 years, Camp Wapello’s iconic entryway has welcomed people to peacefully coexist with nature. Now there’s a 400-foot barbed wire fence down the middle of the road. In February, Davis County Supervisors approved vacating of portion

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

Photo reprints


Obituaries

Facebook
E-edition