No, she didn't land on top of a witch or meet odd characters on the way to the Land of Oz - but a Shreveport woman did survive flying through the air in a tornado near Shreveport, in a bathtub!

Bathroom with filled cast iron tub
UIG via Getty Images

Monday night the National Weather Service reported that a tornado with a ground coverage of nearly 800 yards and 130 mph winds swept through an area about 13 miles long in East Texas near the Louisiana border proximal to Shreveport.

If you hear enough weather forecasts, they'll tell you if you have no other place in the house to hide, get into a bathtub.  The reason is most bathtubs are made of steel and are heavy, plus they're attached to the house via plumbing and other connections. The bathroom area is usually smaller too, meaning a 'cubicle' of sorts of thick framing lumber is formed behind the sheet-rock to help protect during a storm.

Tornado Touches Down In South Africa
Barcroft Media via Getty Images

We've often heard strange stories of what tornadic force winds can do; a home blown apart, the roof gone yet photos still hanging on the walls, a 2x4 being driven through a tree trunk the leaves and branches left intact, one house demolished and the one next door untouched and many many other strange windy tornado tales - here's one for the record book:

Monday night a woman in her 60's took notice of the tornado warnings. Before she knew it she then heard the 'freight train' like rumble, and if you've ever experienced this at night, in the dark the sound alone can be terrifying.  Anyway, with no place else to run the woman went to her bathroom and got into the tub to take cover.

Shortly thereafter she remembers the tornado approached her home from the southwest and the roaring winds sheared the entire back of her house off. With a humongous noise the bathtub with her clinging to life inside was ripped out of the floor, lifted into the angry swirling air and then gently touched down near her home in a wooded area!  Yes, for real!

AFP/Getty Images

A senior meteorologist with the NWS, Jason Hansford said it was the most incredible story he's ever heard of surviving any kind of storm.  The woman was physically OK except for some scratches and bruises, but emotionally shaken after the ordeal!

And wouldn't any of us be?

Tornado's can form and move, and change directions quickly and there are many ways to avoid them, which is key to survival - but if you're caught in one at home it's good to know that the ol' bathtub trick is more than and old wives tale!


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