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After 10 weeks of work my new book Derecho 911 is nearing completion. The manuscript is finalized and the layout nearly finished. When that's done it's off to the publisher. I'm told from the printer to you it will be 4-6 weeks before it arrives in your mail box. In advance of its arrival I am beginning pre-sales exclusively on For those who purchase early you can save $2 dollars off the regular price



As you may have heard this thunderstorm is considered to be the costliest in U.S. history, that includes all tornadoes and most hurricanes (they are not in the thunderstorm category). The last two months I have researched all the meteorological aspects of the derecho and interviewed experts from the Storm Prediction Center, NOAA, and the NWS to get the inside scoop on how and why this amazing storm came to be and how it will change the warning system going forward.

I also take a look at the history of derechos in Iowa as well as the climatology behind them. I've found what appears to be a hot spot in the state for this type of storm, especially over the past 3 decades.

I explore the reason why derechos are the most difficult type of severe weather event to predict and the challenges forecasters face to predict them and give essential warnings. I explain why this particular storm was especially difficult to foresee. I go behind the scenes of the warning process from beginning to end including the work of the NWS, emergency managers, fire fighters, law enforcement, and 911 responders.

Additionally my wife Carolyn has interviewed people all over Iowa and she brings you their harrowing stories of survival. What she finds about Iowan's spirit and determination facing such loss and adversity is truly uplifting.

We explore the impacts to agriculture, the power grid, and the states tree canopy (of which 65 percent was destroyed in Cedar Rapids...40,000 trees at last count).

Cedar Rapids (Iowa's second largest city) was severely impacted with damage to 90 percent of its homes and a complete loss of power for up to 12 days. The city was also ravaged by the 2008 flood and I compare the two events which rank #1 and #2 in terms of Iowa's all time natural disasters.

I also have a chapter on Gustavus Hinrichs who made the distinction between tornadoes and derechos while at the University of Iowa in the mid 1880s. He's credited with being the originator of the term derecho and you will find out why he's one of the most important figures in early severe weather research. Aside from his work in theory he created Iowa's first weather service and had an observatory in Iowa City.

Beyond that I also devote time to the process of determining the strength of the winds in the 2020 storm which were estimated at 140 mph. It's a complex process and I interview the warning coordinator who took on the job and made the conclusion.

There are also more than 150 storm related images along with numerous graphics and diagrams specific to the storm and derechos as a whole.

Believe it or not, there is far more to the story of this giant but you can at least see the overall "big Picture" of the book and why it will be the authoritative account of this historic storm. For me it was a labor of love and I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did putting it together. Please help me spread the word that its available.

To get your personal copy of my in depth account of this remarkable storm click on the banner at the top of the page. Roll weather....TS