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Moore Tornado: More Lives Saved by Forecast

Jon Erdman
Published: May 24, 2013

The Morning of May 20, 2013

Day 1 tornado outlook for May 20, 2013 from NOAA's Storm Prediction Center. Black hatched area indicates at least a 10% chance of an EF2 or stronger tornado within 25 miles of a point.

Monday morning, less than 12 hours before the Moore, Okla. tornado, residents were still picking up the pieces from Sunday evening's EF4 tornado near Shawnee, Okla. and EF3 tornado affecting Luther and Carney, Okla.  

(RECAP:  May 19 tornadoes)

What you see in the map above is a tornado risk map from NOAA's Storm Prediction Center (SPC).  The SPC issues so-called "convective outlooks" covering the current day (day 1), as well as the following two days (days 2 and 3), and a general outlook for the extended period (days 4-8).  

The SPC day 1 outlook also breaks down individual severe weather threats, including the tornado threat, contoured by the threat of a tornado within 25 miles of a point.  A tornado threat of over 10% is an elevated one.  Also, note the black hatched area says not only a 10% chance of a tornado, but a tornado capable of EF2 or stronger damage.  

Then there was this sadly prescient tweet sent out from NWS-Norman that morning:

Forecast tips for you:

Next, the tornado watch is issued.


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