While we're just recovering from some nasty stormy weather (June 30, 2021) that was so bad the National Weather Service may be coming out to investigate a possible microburst, it's also the 4th anniversary of the massive Utica flood, and when a tornado touched down in Vernon.

Back in 2017, the 911 emergency center could not keep up with the calls coming in as floodwaters swept away not only cars but local roadways. Torrential downpours were relentless and seemed to never end across the region, and people were literally stranded at their workplaces, in their homes, trapped in trailer parks, and in some situations on the roof of their car.

Reverse 911 calls were issued advising evacuations to residents along Sauquoit Creek from Whitesboro to Paris as the water rose at a dangerously fast rate. The City of Utica declared a state of emergency with no unnecessary travel.

The National Weather Service issued a Flash Flood Warning for Utica, Rome, Sullivan, Oneida, Kirkland, Lenox, Westmoreland, Eaton, Chittenango, and Canastota as the rain continued for days. Central New York could not get a break, and the Red Cross was on hand to help who they could.

On Friday, June 30, 2017, it was confirmed by the National Weather Service out of Binghamton that a tornado ripped through Vernon.

"How ironic the day Don Barnes releases his new Album "Ride the Storm," we had a small twister touch down within yards of the stage today." 38 Special was in town to play a concert at Vernon Downs shared the tornado on social media (see below). We were there and surprised the show went on as scheduled.

Would you agree the weather is constantly changing and getting more severe in our area?

CHECK OUT THESE PHOTOS: Severe Thunderstorms Crash Their Way Through The Utica/Rome Area

How crazy were those storms yesterday? It left a lot of damage in the area to homes, roadways, etc. These photos were submitted by our listeners. If you have any, send them to us inside the station app.

Tornado Strikes Saratoga County in 2020

Lightning Strikes Through Tree, Turns Sand to Glass

Northern Lights In Old Forge

It's not really common to see northern lights in Central New York, but photographer Kurt Gardner captured the beautiful conformation of them near Old Forge. We're usually too far south of the North Pole, but sometimes we get lucky.
Auroras are caused by the Sun. The Sun is not only hot and bright, but it's also full of energy and small particles that fall toward Earth. NASA says the protective magnetic field around Earth shields us from most of the energy and particles, and we don't even notice them.
The amount of energy the Sun sends, depends on the streaming solar wind and solar storms. During one kind of solar storm called a coronal mass ejection, the Sun expels a huge bubble of electrified gas that can travel through space at high speeds.
When a solar storm comes toward us, some of the energy and small particles can travel down the magnetic field lines at the north and south poles into Earth's atmosphere. There, the particles interact with gases in our atmosphere resulting in beautiful displays of light in the sky. Oxygen gives off green and red light. Nitrogen glows blue and purple. [NASA]

Tornado Strikes Saratoga County in 2020