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Breezy2

Severe Thunderstorms at Ft Wilderness-Safety

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Tuesday we went thru a hellacious afternoon severe thunderstorm at the Fort. Straight line winds and pea/nickel size hail created some real anxious moments. At Lake Magic RV Resort in Clermont on Rt 192 a trailer was blown over with people inside. https://www.mynews13.com/fl/orlando/news/2019/05/14/strong-winds-overturn-occupied-rv-florida Fortunately all were rescued and safe. At the Fort there were tents down, awnings ripped off RV's, and numerous trees and large limbs down. The Comfort Stations at the Fort seemed like a logical safety option and those that didn't feel safe headed for one when the severe thunderstorm alert was broadcast and the storm became REAL!  Once while traveling we pulled off the road and stayed at an RV park in Pennsylvania during a storm event where evacuation to a brick building was mandatory and it was a good call on their part. Wonder when Disney will start making storm safety suggestions, other than hurricane events, for those not familiar with the severity of Florida thunderstorms. 

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My trailer is my least favorite spot to be in during a thunderstorm especially when surrounded by trees.   I always look up before setting up to spot any dead trees or limbs and locate the  nearest solid structure in case of evacuation.

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22 hours ago, Travisma said:

That same storm took down 5 power/telephone poles and trees on Turkey Lake Road (parallel to I-4 ) and killed network service to one of my Post Offices until late last night.

I wondered what all the electric company trucks were doing on Turkey Lake RD.  I had noticed at least one of the power poles leaning towards Turkey Lake RD.  just waiting for a good wind to go down.  Of course there was a back up on I-4 of looky-loos and the trucks weren't even on 4.

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It was really impressive how quickly Disney's clean up crew came in after the storm. They were picking up the large branches blocking the loop roads,  walking thru the woods clearing all the fallen branches and when necessary trimming broken branches in trees.  Within a few hours you would have never known there was a storm. However, a boat crew member did tell us they got caught in the middle of Bay Lake as the storm moved in quicker than anticipated. They docked at The Lodge rather than continuing on to The Fort. Good move. 

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39 minutes ago, Breezy2 said:

It was really impressive how quickly Disney's clean up crew came in after the storm. They were picking up the large branches blocking the loop roads,  walking thru the woods clearing all the fallen branches and when necessary trimming broken branches in trees.  Within a few hours you would have never known there was a storm. However, a boat crew member did tell us they got caught in the middle of Bay Lake as the storm moved in quicker than anticipated. They docked at The Lodge rather than continuing on to The Fort. Good move. 

That's surprising considering all of the weather gear they have to look for lightning and approaching storms.

One thing I didn't see last time we visited, (maybe I just missed it or it's been gone forever) was the rotating radar antenna on the top of the Contemporary.  

They used to utilize it to keep track of the boats on the lakes and I thought weather also.

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We once rented a pontoon boat at the Contemporary marina with a cast member's assurance that we had plenty of time before the storm would affect us.  Boy was he mistaken, storms converged from 3 directions over Bay Lake and we were trying to return to our dock at top pontoon boat speed before the heavens opened up, when the Lake Patrol pulled up alongside and directed us to climb into their much faster boat - not an easy feat with toddlers in tow.  My four year old, however, was ecstatic because that was the boat he wanted us to rent in the first place.  As we disembarked at the Contemporary dock, and ran for cover the cast member at the dock chased us yelling, "where's my boat?"  My DH paused long enough to explain that the Lake Patrol instructed us to abandon it.  It was quite an adventure.

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49 minutes ago, kadancer said:

We once rented a pontoon boat at the Contemporary marina with a cast member's assurance that we had plenty of time before the storm would affect us.  Boy was he mistaken, storms converged from 3 directions over Bay Lake and we were trying to return to our dock at top pontoon boat speed before the heavens opened up, when the Lake Patrol pulled up alongside and directed us to climb into their much faster boat - not an easy feat with toddlers in tow.  My four year old, however, was ecstatic because that was the boat he wanted us to rent in the first place.  As we disembarked at the Contemporary dock, and ran for cover the cast member at the dock chased us yelling, "where's my boat?"  My DH paused long enough to explain that the Lake Patrol instructed us to abandon it.  It was quite an adventure.

That explains the origin of the famous ghost pontoon boat seen on Bay Lake in the early morning fog

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6 hours ago, kadancer said:

We once rented a pontoon boat at the Contemporary marina with a cast member's assurance that we had plenty of time before the storm would affect us.  Boy was he mistaken, storms converged from 3 directions over Bay Lake and we were trying to return to our dock at top pontoon boat speed before the heavens opened up, when the Lake Patrol pulled up alongside and directed us to climb into their much faster boat - not an easy feat with toddlers in tow.  My four year old, however, was ecstatic because that was the boat he wanted us to rent in the first place.  As we disembarked at the Contemporary dock, and ran for cover the cast member at the dock chased us yelling, "where's my boat?"  My DH paused long enough to explain that the Lake Patrol instructed us to abandon it.  It was quite an adventure.

That's awesome great story 

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8 hours ago, kadancer said:

We once rented a pontoon boat at the Contemporary marina with a cast member's assurance that we had plenty of time before the storm would affect us.  Boy was he mistaken, storms converged from 3 directions over Bay Lake and we were trying to return to our dock at top pontoon boat speed before the heavens opened up, when the Lake Patrol pulled up alongside and directed us to climb into their much faster boat - not an easy feat with toddlers in tow.  My four year old, however, was ecstatic because that was the boat he wanted us to rent in the first place.  As we disembarked at the Contemporary dock, and ran for cover the cast member at the dock chased us yelling, "where's my boat?"  My DH paused long enough to explain that the Lake Patrol instructed us to abandon it.  It was quite an adventure.

Amazing storm story! Glad to hear the Lake Patrol was concerned with your safety and came to your rescue. Disney gets major points in storm safety for the training of the Lake Patrol in your situation. It is truly incredible how fast these storms can blow up and catch everyone by surprise. 

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