Experts talk about Land Spouts and Tornadoes

Published: May. 27, 2023 at 12:19 PM CDT
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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - If you saw the Landspout earlier this week, you were not the only one.

Several folks voiced concern when what looked like a tornado was seen and photographed by several folks.

An emergency siren also went off at F. E. Warren, causing many to wonder why the emergency sirens weren’t activated everywhere.

We spoke to authorities, and here’s what they had to say.

”If there’s funnel clouds. And its either radar indicated, or we have a trained spotter thats notified the national weather service of a siren, or of a tornado, sorry, that has touched the ground that’s going to, we’re on it,” said Jeanine West, Director of the Cheyenne-Laramie County Emergency Management Agency.

Authorities said that on Wednesday, May 24 th, Laramie County experienced several land spouts.

These slow-moving systems move from the ground up and typically max out at wind speeds of 60 miles per hour.

They do not cause much damage and therefore are not a part of the emergency management system or EMS watch.

EMS radar tracks tornadoes, which move from the skies down with wind speeds from 70 mph and up.

The outdoor warning sirens through ems were not activated on Wednesday because of this difference.

Folks that may have heard sirens were located on the F.E. Warren base through their system, which is not connected.

”Land spouts they typically form from the land up, and they are typically very short lived just lasting a few minutes they typically form on boundaries low level boundaries. Like a cold front or an outflow boundaries. And they are very much less detectable because they for from the ground up. And so usually we dont detect them until the end of their lifecycle,” said Steve Rubin, Meteorologist, NationalWeather Service-Cheyenne.

EMS says that when tornadoes hit, they will notify the public only with their sirens in the areas of concern.

They will put up a red polygon map on their site based on the national weather service to show the areas in danger.