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Lafayette County avoids Monday’s severe weather outbreak

Despite multiple tornado warnings on Monday evening, Lafayette County saw minimal damage when it came to severe weather.
Lafayette County Emergency Management Coordinator Steve Quarles said that one tree fell along Bramlett Boulevard and several streets in Oxford experienced flash flooding from rain, but that no injuries were reported and no structures were damaged.
“We were very lucky,” Quarles said. “We had (storm) cells come over us, but they stayed in the air.”
Nearby Batesville and Tupelo each experienced damage during Monday’s weather event, with the National Weather Service classifying the damage along the Colonial Estates and Barnes Crossing Mall area in Tupelo at a EF2 tornado.
A separate storm that hit a portion of Itawamba County was also classified as a EF1 tornado.
“The storm that hit Tupelo was moving northeast and it missed Oxford,” Zach Maye, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Memphis said.
Severe weather events occur pretty often in Mississippi in November, Maye said.
“This is getting into our secondary severe weather season once the season begins to change back,” Maye said. “It isn’t as extreme as our primary season in March and April, but this type of weather in November isn’t atypical at all.”
Lafayette County has added a severe weather warning system, which Quarles said he encourages residents to sign up for.
The system, known as CodeRed, began in 2011 and provides notifications to residents of impending severe weather including tornados, severe thunderstorms, winter storm warnings and flash floods. The system works by calling the number provided to alert a resident of a warning in their specific area. Individuals can also download the CodeRed app to their smartphone and set notifications for up to 25 miles from their location in order to be alerted to potential severe weather.
Lafayette Countians can sign up for CodeRed by visiting http://lafayettems.com/departments/emergency-management/codered/ or by downloading the app from Google Play or the Apple Store.