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Tough winter may be ahead

September 28, 2011

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana residents who slogged through last year’s icy, snowy winter may be facing a repeat of that icy blast in the coming months.
    Associate state climatologist Ken Scheeringa says the same La Nina weather pattern that brought Indiana a cold and snowy winter last year appears poised to return this winter. La Nina occurs when the central Pacific Ocean around the equator cools by at least 1 degree below normal.
    Last year, La Nina combined with a warming of the ocean around Iceland and Greenland called the North Atlantic Oscillation to make Indiana’s winter particularly long and cold.
    Scheeringa told The Indianapolis Star those two weather patterns appear as though they could repeat again this winter.
    He says, ‘‘When they join forces, they make us very miserable.’’
Tornado reported
    The National Weather Service said a weak tornado touched down east of Nappanee in northern Indiana, causing some minor damage to the roof of a building, knocking down a fence and a line of trees.
    Meteorologist Evan Bentley says the tornado with wind speeds estimated at 70 to 70 mph touched down at 12:56 p.m. Tuesday and was on the ground for six-tenths of a mile. He says it tore a section of a roof off a one-story building and insulation debris was found up to a half mile away.
    A tornado with winds of 160 mph hit Nappanee in 2007, destroying 51 homes and damaging more than 330 more homes in the city of fewer than 7,000 people.

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