Tornadoes Slam 5-State Area, Killing Two; Outbreak Continues Today

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:29 PM GMT on May 20, 2013

Share this Blog
44
+

The Midwest U.S. is under the gun again today, as a potent storm system that spawned a preliminary count of 24 tornadoes in five states on Sunday reloads and prepares to dish out another afternoon and evening of atmospheric mayhem. Sunday's tornadoes swept through Oklahoma, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, and Illinois, with Oklahoma bearing the brunt of the assault. The outbreak's only deadly tornado--preliminarily rated as en EF-5 with 166 - 200 mph winds--hit Shawnee, Oklahoma, a town of 30,000 located 35 miles southeast of Oklahoma City. The twister leveled a trailer park, killing two people, and blew a semi-trailer off of an expressway overpass on I-40. At least 21 people were injured and 300 homes destroyed over the five-state area by the tornadoes. The 24 tornadoes from May 19 make it the biggest day for tornadoes in the U.S. this spring, and the highest number reported in one day since January 30, when 44 tornadoes touched down from Georgia to Indiana.


Figure 1. The Shawnee, Oklahoma tornado at 6:44 pm CDT May 19, 2013, as it passed just NW of Shawnee. The tornado killed two people in a mobile home park in Shawnee. Viewer submitted photo. #okwx pic.twitter.com/UCH9e8o9G8 Matt Mahler@themahler


Figure 2. The Shawnee tornado hurled a semi-trailer off of an expressway overpass at Highway 117 and I-40 in Oklahoma, and toppled another semi. Four people who sheltered under this overpass were injured, one seriously, and taken to the hospital. Highway overpasses can act to amplify a tornado's winds, and are very dangerous places to be during a tornado. According to the NWS in Norman Oklahoma, during the tornado outbreak of May 3, 1999, tornadoes crossed three highway overpasses, and at all three locations, there was a fatality. One of the fatalities occurred from an EF-2 tornado in a rural area, which suggests that a tornado need not be a large, violent tornado with a considerable debris cloud to cause fatal injuries to people seeking shelter from storms under overpasses. In addition to the fatal injuries to three people, there were also many severe, potentially life-threatening and gruesome injuries inflicted upon people underneath the overpasses, that in some cases, has left these people with permanent disabilities. Don't take shelter under a highway overpass from a tornado! Image credit: KFOR.com.


Figure 3. Radar reflectivity image taken at 6:08 pm CDT May 19, 2013 of the supercell thunderstorm that spawned the Shawnee, Oklahoma tornado.


Figure 4. Doppler velocity image taken at 6:08 pm CDT May 19, 2013 of the supercell thunderstorm that spawned the Shawnee, Oklahoma tornado. Note the couplet of dark red colors right next to light blues near the center of the image, showing that the air was moving both towards the radar and away from it within a short distance, indicating a tight rotation of the tornado's parent mesocyclone.

Iowa's record tornado-free streak ends at 359 days
A tornado touched down near Slater, Iowa at 6:10 pm CDT on Sunday, May 19, one of six tornadoes reported in the state that day. Remarkably, it was the first tornado recorded in the state since May 24, 2012 (Fayette County.) The 359-day streak without a tornado was the longest tornado-free period in state history. The previous record was 355 days, set between May 5, 1955, and April 26, 1956. The new streak is far more impressive because digital technology and spotter networks today are so comprehensive, resulting in far fewer missed tornadoes. There was a much higher likelihood back in the 1950s for tornadoes to be missed. The exceptional tornado-free period was due to the combination of the state's dry summer of 2012 (3rd driest on record) and cold spring of 2013 (8th coldest March - April on record). Thunderstorms like heat and moisture to form, and its tough to get a tornado if you're experiencing a top-ten driest or coldest spring or summer.


Figure 5. Radar reflectivity image of the tornado-spawning supercell thunderstorm that dropped an EF-1 tornado just to the southwest of Wichita, Kansas, on May 19, 2013.

Wichita gets lucky
At 3:30 pm Sunday, Kansas' largest city, Wichita, got a major scare when a large supercell thunderstorm spawned a half-mile wide tornado to the southwest of the city. The tornado headed directly for the airport and downtown Wichita, prompting the issuance of "Tornado Emergency" for the city. In the wake of the deadly EF-5 tornado that leveled Joplin, Missouri in 2011, the NWS decided to give local NWS offices the option to issue special, strongly worded tornado warnings to let the population know when a particularly dangerous tornado--one that has been confirmed by spotters to be on the ground--is approaching. The NWS issued one of these very strongly-worded tornado warnings on Sunday for Wichita:

Statement as of 3:47 PM CDT on May 19, 2013
... A Tornado Warning remains in effect for southern Sedgwick County until 415 PM CDT...

... Tornado emergency for Wichita...

At 345 PM CDT... a confirmed large... violent and extremely dangerous tornado was located on the southwest side of Wichita... and moving northeast at 30 mph.

This is a particularly dangerous situation.

Hazard... deadly tornado.

Source... weather spotters confirmed tornado.

Impact... you could be killed if not underground or in a tornado shelter. Complete destruction of neighborhoods... businesses and vehicles will occur. Flying debris will be deadly to people and animals.

Locations impacted include...Maize... downtown Wichita... Wichita... Bel Aire... McConnell Air Force Base…east Wichita and Oaklawn.

Precautionary/preparedness actions...

This is an extremely dangerous tornado with complete devastation likely. You could be killed if not underground or in a tornado shelter. Do not delay... seek shelter now! If no underground shelter is available seek shelter in an interior room of the lowest level of a structure... or if time allows... consider moving to an underground shelter elsewhere. Mobile homes and outbuildings will offer no shelter from this tornado.

Tornado... observed
Tornado damage threat... catastrophic
Hail... 2.75in

Wichita TV station KSNW did an excellent job covering the tornado, but were forced to abandon the studio during the height of the storm, as seen on this video clip. You can hear hail pounding the roof as the news crew scrambles for shelter. Station meteorologist J.D. Rudd has this to say: "We are okay. I'll tell you though, it got intense. That thing passed right over our studio. Luckily, it had lifted. But I truly thought the roof of our studio was about to peel off. And the sound of the hail was deafening. What a day. Three hours of coverage with the largest city in the state under a TOR warning for a long time. Weather service called it a Tornado Emergency…'Large, violent tornado on the ground'. Words that gave me chills when I read them." Preliminary damage surveys from the NWS indicate that the Wichita tornado was an EF-1 with a path length 4.6 miles that lifted two miles south of the Wichita airport.


Figure 6. Severe weather outlook for Monday, May 20, calls for a "Moderate Risk" of severe weather over much of Oklahoma, and portions of surrounding states. You can follow today's severe weather outbreak from our Severe Weather page.

Another big severe weather day today in the Midwest
The latest forecasts from NOAA's Storm Prediction Center call for an active severe weather day again on Monday, with a "Moderate Risk" of severe weather over much of Oklahoma, plus portions of Southwest Missouri, Northwest Arkansas, and extreme North Texas. The highest threat for tornadoes will be in Southern Oklahoma and into North Texas. The severe weather outbreak will continue on Tuesday and Wednesday, progressing eastwards into the Ohio Valley and Great Lakes. Only a "Slight Risk" of severe weather is expected those days.


Video 1. Impressive footage (peaking at 4:30 of the video) of the huge tornado that devastated Carney, Oklahoma on May 19, 2013.


Video 2. The "Dominator 3" armored tornado intercept vehicle saw plenty of action on Sunday, as seen in this video, taken just northeast of Edmond, Oklahoma. From the ‪http://tvnweather.com/‬ description of the video: "This tornado was one of the strongest ever intercepted, and we needed all 10,000k pounds of the new Dominator because I have never felt vibration like that before as we were slammed by suction vortices wrapping all around the vehicle. Jim Cantore was on board and he's hooked. All part of #TornadoChasers, Season 2013 coming up this fall on ‪http://tvnweather.com/ondemand‬"

Additional info
Wunderblogger Lee Grenci has an interesting post discussing how last Wednesday's Granbury, Texas tornado was able to form in an atmosphere that seemingly had too little wind shear to get a supercell thunderstorm spinning. The Granbury tornado was an EF-4 with 166 - 200 mph winds that killed six people, and was part of a weather system separate from the one that is generating the current Midwest U.S. tornado outbreak.

news9.com out of Oklahoma City had some excellent live helicopter coverage of Sunday's storms, and will likely be out there again today.

Jeff Masters

Severe Thunderstorm Warned 4 (smyezek)
Outflow dominate storms, interesting to watch especially this wall of water that just pushed east. Lots of wind, heavy rains and even some decent size hail (mainly quarter sized, but may have been slightly larger). Intercepted this storm several miles SW of Coin, Ia (Page County). Wall of Water from an outflow dominate storm.
Severe Thunderstorm Warned 4
Don't Try This At Home (taddarkprince)
No Really....Don't try this at home. Pentax K-5 and Tamron 10-24mm Lens.
Don't Try This At Home
Rozel, KS Stovepipe Tornado! (charlesimages)
My first tornado ever in my chasing career, and it's this massive beast! Awesome! Follow my adventures at facebook.com/CharlesimagesStormedia and cistormedia.com!
Rozel, KS Stovepipe Tornado!
Medford, OK (amy1225)
Medford, OK
After the Storm (ctrmom)
Calm after the storm, with lots of birds singing in the background too!
After the Storm

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 1063 - 1013

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25Blog Index

I'm honestly angry that the school was put on lock down, the tornado was warned to be one which is not safe to ride out above ground, school authorities should know that schools while certainly strong buildings are still not safe given such a violent tornado. From what I know they had time to evacuate those kids.

And why the heck don't schools have underground safe rooms built in? I don't care how confident school officials are of the building strength. High end tornadoes are a different animal, schools should have safe rooms. The building itself is not enough.

Maybe I'm wrong here, I'm just emotionally shaken to here what has happened with these schools and the fact that kids were forced to in essence meet their end...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting ScottLincoln:

I'm not sure what else you say? I mean everything is normal, you go to work, you cook dinner in your house, you sleep in your bed. Then one day the universe just decides to wipe clean everything you knew as a daily habit one day, with minutes of warning. I dont think people can process that much more than thinking it is a dream at first.


Yeah, some reporters are neither eloquent or sensitive.

Thrwast...really horrific looking tornado in OK near OKC. Some real bad footage etc. If not in a big mood or beyond cringing, don't click the links I reckon
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TomTaylor:
Right. So why would one say "NWS officially rated this at least an EF-4"

Nothing is official yet. I guess I'm just being picky.

That wording would probably be acceptable for what it is at this point. I am not sure to what extent that this point they have actually surveyed the tornado for an official rating... things are hectic. But I really don't think it would be unreasonable based up on NWS Norman's facebook post to say that it is preliminarily an EF4.

It really doesn't matter that much at this point. It's going to be like CSI: Tornado in the coming days and we will have a very good survey.
Quoting SouthernIllinois:

I wouldn't read much into it, Scott. That was a clear drive-by ad hominem. Sad.

Yeah, you're probably right... sigh....
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
significant tornado has recovered back up to 2-3 over Oklahoma city in front of that new cell
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1059. Thrawst
I guess the Tornado Gods saved most of the activity and major tornadoes for this week... At least three EF-4's in the past week.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
For all of you to know this is the 18Z GFS look like the 12Z

18Z

12Z
Member Since: May 23, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 4712
Quoting AussieStorm:
Can someone please tell me it's not true that 24 children have been killed in the Plaza Towers Elementary School. These young kids are the same age of mine so it really bring it home how serious this is.

Thoughts and prayers with the people of Moore, Oklahoma.
And some people here are arguing over whether it is an ef4 or ef5.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
As many as 30 might be dead inside that school per TWC. 7 bodies recovered I heard.
Member Since: August 1, 2011 Posts: 28 Comments: 8032
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

...but it's still official. It might not be final, but it is its official rating for the time being.
Yeah, for the time being. There's a difference and that's what I'm trying to stress.

I believe this will easily be rated an EF-4 also (maybe even EF-5), I just want people to understand the difference.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
7 children "drowned" in the school and more are feared dead... I'm crying.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Seven bodies so far at elementary school per TWC.
Member Since: August 1, 2011 Posts: 28 Comments: 8032
Quoting CybrTeddy:


An apparent EF-4 or EF-5 tornado went through Moore, OK and has caused numerous fatalities and an incredible amount of damage.


Teddy, how in the world can you say it's an EF-4 or EF-5? That is so not official.

;-)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1048. Thrawst
Via Reed Timmer:

Video of devastating tornado that tore through Moore, OK earlier today.. described by KFOR-TV as worse than May 3, 1999. Latest report is 24 children lost their lives in an elementary school in Moore, OK. I am at a loss for words... This is about as tragic as a tornado can get. Our thoughts and prayers are with those that lost everything with this tragedy.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Barefootontherocks:
Puff of cloud to EF5 in one hour.

Eat my shorts.

That doesn't make one ounce of sense. I wasn't even on the blog today to even discuss today's storms until after it was over.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1046. Patrap

191
WFUS54 KOUN 202354
TOROUN
OKC005-029-069-210030-
/O.NEW.KOUN.TO.W.0040.130520T2354Z-130521T0030Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NORMAN OK
654 PM CDT MON MAY 20 2013

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN NORMAN HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
SOUTHERN COAL COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST OKLAHOMA...
CENTRAL ATOKA COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST OKLAHOMA...
EXTREME EASTERN JOHNSTON COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST OKLAHOMA...

* UNTIL 730 PM CDT

* AT 654 PM CDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE METEOROLOGISTS DETECTED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO. THIS DANGEROUS
STORM WAS LOCATED NEAR LEHIGH...AND MOVING NORTHEAST AT 60 MPH.
THIS STORM HAS PRODUCED DESTRUCTIVE WINDS OVER 80 MPH.

IN ADDITION TO A TORNADO...LARGE DESTRUCTIVE HAIL UP TO TENNIS BALL
SIZE IS EXPECTED WITH THIS STORM.

* LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
ATOKA...COALGATE...WAPANUCKA...STRINGTOWN...LEHIGH ...PHILLIPS...
WARDVILLE...CLARITA...DAISY...OLNEY...CHOCKIE...RE DDEN...BOGGY
DEPOT STATE PARK AND ATOKA RESERVOIR.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TAKE COVER NOW IN A STORM SHELTER OR AN INTERIOR ROOM OF A STURDY
BUILDING. STAY AWAY FROM DOORS AND WINDOWS.



LAT...LON 3451 9568 3451 9578 3441 9578 3430 9639
3431 9643 3447 9650 3449 9648 3471 9610
3468 9609 3468 9588 3460 9588 3459 9567
TIME...MOT...LOC 2354Z 243DEG 52KT 3447 9621
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Not so sure that tornado, if still on the ground, will pass south of Joplin looking at radar.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting ScottLincoln:

Tom, the NWS out of Norman did post on Facebook that it was preliminarily EF4. Not quite a true survey or rating yet, but that is out of the NWS office responsible for that area. It is doubtful that the rating will go down, and I wouldn't say there is any evidence at this time to disagree with EF4 preliminarily. But that's as far as we should go at this time based upon the information available.
Right. So why would one say "NWS officially rated this at least an EF-4"

Nothing is official yet. I guess I'm just being picky.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TomTaylor:
Nobody is jumping down anybody's throat as far as I'm concerned. If some feel that way, I am sorry, I certainly didn't mean to. All I'm asking is that we appeal to reason. Don't assume things. Plenty of assumptions going around today, makes it painful to read the blog.


I agree Tom...I have said the years I have been a member on here, this is an "entertainment blog". I would never trust my welfare to blogger's posts. I would always listen to my local officials.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting ScottLincoln:

It's not easier to get a EF5 today than it was to get an F5 in previous years. The scale was developed in such a way that there would be minimal changes to how ratings were done, and they wanted a scale where old tornado ratings would be roughly comparable to today's ratings. All that changed was the wind speeds. Numerous meteorologists and engineers worked together to develop the new scale. We now know that wind speed estimates associated with the original scale were not accurate; the new EF-scale has better estimates, including ranges of wind speeds that can be used to evaluate good/fair/poor construction of similar building types.

The SPC links to the original 95-page report on the new scale here:
http://www.spc.noaa.gov/faq/tornado/ef-scale.html


Exactly, we know now it takes less wind to produce the damage ratings for each F level respectively than previously thought with the older F scale, so its not the tornado that is weaker, just a greater understanding of tornado damage due to advancement in the science. No disrespect to Dr. Fujita of course, his scale was an amazing development for its time and he was a ground breaking meteorologist for his time.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Thrawst:
Ummm.... looks like i missed something significant. Somebody care to give me a little explanation? :/


An apparent EF-4 or EF-5 tornado went through Moore, OK and has caused numerous fatalities and an incredible amount of damage.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I cried
Can someone please tell me it's not true that 24 children have been killed in the Plaza Towers Elementary School. These young kids are the same age of mine so it really bring it home how serious this is.

Thoughts and prayers with the people of Moore, Oklahoma
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting ScottLincoln:

It is far too early to be trusting any of these preliminary width, length, and intensity estimates. Far too early. Tornado width estimates are notoriously overestimated during realtime events. Almost always.
We will eventually know the scope of the tornado's damage. No need to speculate now.
Puff of cloud to EF5 in one hour.

Eat my shorts.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
No survivors left in school.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1037. Patrap

737
WFUS54 KFWD 202352
TORFWD
TXC093-193-333-210045-
/O.NEW.KFWD.TO.W.0026.130520T2352Z-130521T0045Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FORT WORTH TX
652 PM CDT MON MAY 20 2013

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN FORT WORTH HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
SOUTHEASTERN COMANCHE COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS...
WEST CENTRAL HAMILTON COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS...
NORTH CENTRAL MILLS COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS...

* UNTIL 745 PM CDT

* AT 653 PM CDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE METEOROLOGISTS DETECTED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO 11 MILES
SOUTHWEST OF GUSTINE...MOVING EAST AT 30 MPH.

* THE TORNADO WILL BE NEAR...
GUSTINE AROUND 705 PM CDT...

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

MOVE TO AN INTERIOR BATHROOM...CLOSET...OR HALLWAY ON THE LOWEST
FLOOR OF YOUR BUILDING. COVER YOURSELF WITH BLANKETS...PILLOWS...OR A
MATTRESS FOR PROTECTION.



LAT...LON 3188 9819 3179 9812 3157 9837 3163 9864
3186 9864
TIME...MOT...LOC 2353Z 266DEG 26KT 3175 9851



25
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Thrawst:
Ummm.... looks like i missed something significant. Somebody care to give me a little explanation? :/



Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1034. whitewabit (Mod)
TWC is reporting that at the one grade school hit in Ok City it has turned in to a recovery effort for the deaths of as many as 2 dozen students and teachers
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TomTaylor:
One shouldn't say "the NWS already rated this an EF-4." The NWS hasn't officially rated it yet. You are correct to assume it will likely be at least an EF-4, but has it been rated an EF-4? No :)

Is there a possibility the official rating is lower than the preliminary? Absolutely, though it is highly unlikely in this situation.

Tom, the NWS out of Norman did post on Facebook that it was preliminarily EF4. Not quite a true survey or rating yet, but that is out of the NWS office responsible for that area. It is doubtful that the rating will go down, and I wouldn't say there is any evidence at this time to disagree with EF4 preliminarily. But that's as far as we should go at this time based upon the information available.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TomTaylor:
Preliminary.

...but it's still official. It might not be final, but it is its official rating for the time being.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1031. Thrawst
Ummm.... looks like i missed something significant. Somebody care to give me a little explanation? :/
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1030. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 174 Comments: 54630
is the original tornadic warned storm that had the tornado or the one south of it?

i remember the first one being directly over okc, so maybe it was the one under it.
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9732
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

No, I'm not assuming anything of the sort:

‏@NWSNorman 1h
458pm - Preliminary Rating of Newcastle-Moore Tornado at least EF-4 #okwx
Preliminary.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Can someone please tell me it's not true that 24 children have been killed in the Plaza Towers Elementary School. These young kids are the same age of mine so it really bring it home how serious this is.

Thoughts and prayers with the people of Moore, Oklahoma.
Member Since: September 30, 2007 Posts: 9 Comments: 15940
Forbes just said on the TWC that damage was more extensive than other F5 sites he's surveyed, and that it was likely a mile wide or more.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I'll say this, regardless of the "validity" of KFOR's claim I believe we should report these claims as this is a developing story. Facts are often widely distorted, inaccurate as many times reporters get caught up in the scenes and end up using baseless twitter posts as "confirmed sources." Here's what we know - a large tornado just went through Moore, OK. A fair portion of that city is in ruins. This is no minimal tornado, we all can see that. The NWS will send out their own teams, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with reporting what people who've experienced similar tornadoes feelings on the intensity of this tornado. Granted, this shouldn't be treated as fact nor are we. We're reporting what we're being told at the time, and I find it amazing that some of you are being so quick to jump down each other's throats because of that. Again, it's a developing situation.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TomTaylor:
No it has not. Preliminary rating is not an official. Here you are assuming a preliminary rating automatically creates the lower bound of the intensity estimate. Usually it does, but it is completely possible that a preliminary rating is overdone and the official rating gets revised down. It's almost guaranteed not to happen here, however.

No, I'm not assuming anything of the sort:

‏@NWSNorman 1h
458pm - Preliminary Rating of Newcastle-Moore Tornado at least EF-4 #okwx
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TomTaylor:
I never said you were specifically making these claims, relax. KFOR's claim of 200 MPH winds by the NWS is irrelevant to me...and it should be to everyone else. It makes absolutely no sense for the NWS to make such a claim so early on.Yea that is more of a technicality. One shouldn't say "the NWS already rated this an EF-4." The NWS hasn't officially rated it yet. You are correct to assume it will likely be at least an EF-4, but has it been rated an EF-4? No :)

Is there a possibility the official rating is lower than the preliminary? Absolutely, though it is highly unlikely in this situation.


The Joplin tornado was estimated EF4 preliminary, obviously with a thorough evaluation per NWS it was no question an EF5.

If I had to make my best educated guess, there are large regions of EF4 damage and a few regions peaking at EF5. Time will tell. As I said earlier though, its not worth arguing over, and doing so seems rather cold and harsh given the main concern right now...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1022. Patrap

847
WFUS53 KLSX 202350
TORLSX
MOC137-210015-
/O.NEW.KLSX.TO.W.0019.130520T2350Z-130521T0015Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE ST LOUIS MO
650 PM CDT MON MAY 20 2013

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN ST LOUIS HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
EASTERN MONROE COUNTY IN NORTHEAST MISSOURI...

* UNTIL 715 PM CDT

* AT 644 PM CDT...A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A
TORNADO WAS LOCATED 6 MILES WEST OF SANTA FE...AND MOVING NORTHEAST
AT 30 MPH.

HAZARD...DEVELOPING TORNADO AND HALF DOLLAR SIZE HAIL.

SOURCE...RADAR INDICATED ROTATION.

IMPACT...MOBILE HOMES WILL BE HEAVILY DAMAGED OR DESTROYED.
SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE TO ROOFS...WINDOWS AND VEHICLES WILL
OCCUR. FLYING DEBRIS WILL BE DEADLY TO PEOPLE AND ANIMALS.
EXTENSIVE TREE DAMAGE IS LIKELY.

* THIS DANGEROUS STORM WILL AFFECT MAINLY RURAL AREAS OF EASTERN
MONROE COUNTY...INCLUDING THE FOLLOWING LOCATIONS FLORIDA AND
INDIAN CREEK.

THIS WARNING INCLUDES MARK TWAIN LAKE RECREATIONAL AREA.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TAKE COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A
STURDY BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME...A VEHICLE OR
OUTDOORS...MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT
YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.



LAT...LON 3939 9209 3966 9186 3966 9172 3934 9172
3934 9195
TIME...MOT...LOC 2349Z 224DEG 27KT 3940 9191

TORNADO...RADAR INDICATED
HAIL...1.25IN



BRITT
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

The NWS has officially rated it an EF4 at least. That's been said already.
No it has not. Preliminary rating is not an official rating. Here you are assuming a preliminary rating automatically creates the lower bound of the intensity estimate. Usually it does, but it is completely possible that a preliminary rating is overdone and the official rating gets revised down. It's almost guaranteed not to happen here, however.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1020. MrMixon
Dangerous storms continue to roll across the plains. Mother Nature isn't fooling around today. Tell your friends and relatives in the path of these storms to stay tuned to the weather this evening:

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AussieStorm:
Reporter asking a young lady. "How do you feel looking around, seeing your house and your neighbourhood is like this"

Young lady answered, I feel like I am in a dream, I can not believe it.

I'm not sure what else you say? I mean everything is normal, you go to work, you cook dinner in your house, you sleep in your bed. Then one day the universe just decides to wipe clean everything you knew as a daily habit one day, with minutes of warning. I dont think people can process that much more than thinking it is a dream at first.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Nobody is jumping down anybody's throat as far as I'm concerned. If some feel that way, I am sorry, I certainly didn't mean to. All I'm asking is that we appeal to reason. Don't assume things. Plenty of assumptions going around today, makes it painful to read the blog.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1016. Patrap
Jasper
Tornado Warning
Statement as of 6:46 PM CDT on May 20, 2013

... A Tornado Warning remains in effect for Newton and southern Jasper
counties until 715 PM CDT...

At 643 PM CDT... a severe thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado
was located near Seneca... and moving northeast at 60 mph.

Hazard... developing tornado.

Source... radar indicated rotation.

Impact... Mobile homes will be heavily damaged or destroyed.
Significant damage to roofs... windows and vehicles will
occur. Flying debris will be deadly to people and animals.
Extensive tree damage is likely.

Locations impacted include...
Airport Drive... Carterville... Carthage... Diamond... Duenweg...
Duquesne... Granby... Iron Gates... Joplin... Leawood... Neosho...
Saginaw... Seneca... Shoal creek drive... Silver Creek and Webb City.

Interstate 44 between mile markers 1 and 26 will also be impacted by
this dangerous storm.

Precautionary/preparedness actions...

Take cover now. Move to an interior room on the lowest floor of a
sturdy building. Avoid windows. If in a Mobile home... a vehicle or
outdoors... move to the closest substantial shelter and protect
yourself from flying debris.

This line of thunderstorms is capable of producing tornadoes and
widespread significant wind damage. Do not wait to see or hear the
tornado. For your protection move to an interior room on the lowest
floor of your home or business.


A Tornado Watch remains in effect until 1000 PM CDT Monday evening
for southeast Kansas and southern Missouri.

Lat... Lon 3700 9463 3702 9461 3706 9462 3713 9456
3718 9445 3718 9425 3712 9418 3703 9412
3693 9411 3683 9418 3680 9436 3677 9462
time... Mot... loc 2346z 241deg 52kt 3687 9455

Tornado... radar indicated
hail... <.75in


Cramer
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I' don't know much about tornado scale but this looks scary!!!
Link
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
sucking big time tonight.
Link Tulsa OK Radar
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Ameister12:
Tornado warning issued for Joplin. Storm has some strong rotation, but it appears that the tornado will remain south of Joplin.

Edit: Doppler radar is showing a TDS (tornado debris signature), so it's probably producing a significant tornado right now.

There was one back just to the N of Wyandott, but it seems to have gone away for now. Circulation headed toward Neosho... should miss Joplin.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 1063 - 1013

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25Blog Index

Top of Page

About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

Local Weather

Overcast
53 °F
Overcast