Did you hear the tornado sirens in Owensboro today? A funnel cloud was spotted over town and, despite no official warnings from the National Weather Service, the sirens sounded as a precaution to residents.
Here is a video spotter Marshall Graham shot from the Walmart parking lot on South Frederica shortly after noon today.
Here's another look courtesy of Jeremy Head who snapped this shot from the Sam's Club parking lot on Frederica Street.
Though sirens were blaring in Owensboro/Daviess County, there were no official warnings issued by the National Weather Service. In fact, we talked with our TV partners at Eyewitness News, who confirmed there were no active watches or warnings. But, folks in the area were alerted by the sirens.
Here is an explanation from Daviess County Emergency Management Director Andy Ball from the DCEM Facebook page:
Regarding siren activation a few minutes ago (Saturday, Aug 22, 2020):
I (Andy Ball) received a call from Central Dispatch relaying to me an officer in the field reported a funnel near the airport. Because we had no additional field information, I made the decision to have Dispatch set off the sirens as a precaution until I could make contact with the National Weather Service Paducah office. I then immediately called the NWS who stated very slim chance this was a tornado, but rather probably a cold air funnel. I then had Dispatch patch me through to the officer to get more info, who stated he never saw it touch ground, but did see some rotation.
There were never any warnings issued by NWS, which is why residents did not receive any alerts on tv, radio, or phone.
Bottom line: this was a better safe than sorry scenario.
If you'll recall, this happened a couple of weeks as well here in Owensboro. Below, you can see photos of that funnel cloud that took a similar track in the skies across town.