Can You Say "Derecho"? | Agricultural Sciences

Southern Illinois University



Can You Say "Derecho"?

May 20, 2009

According to the National Weather Service, a “derecho” is a “widespread and long-lived windstorm that is associated with a band of rapidly moving showers and thunderstorms.”  To the residents of Carbondale, the “derecho” that hit on May 8, 2009 was a disaster like none had ever witnessed before.  Several estimates indicated the College of Agricultural Sciences was hit with over $1 million dollars in damages.  The Agriculture Building sustained roof damages estimated at approximately $300,000.  And University Farms lost several structures including a feed mill, service center, silos, and other farm structures.

Although the destruction was devastating, the College plans to rebuild most of the main structures.  After President Obama declared the area a federal disaster area, the University is working with federal and state officials to apply for assistance with clean-up, repair, and rebuilding efforts.  “Although we have experienced some devastating losses, we are looking forward to a brighter future” says Dr. Gary Minish [Dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences].