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General Discussion >> Other Weather Events

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cieldumortModerator
Moderator


Reged: Mon
Posts: 1475
Loc: Austin, Tx 30.40N 97.80W
May 20, 2013 Moore, OK Tornado
      #94288 - Mon May 20 2013 06:37 PM

A massive, violent tornado has struck Moore, OK today. The tornado took nearly the very same path as the May 3, 1999 F5.

Initial damage reports confirm that today's tornado was "at least" EF4, and people who witnessed the 1999 F5 are actually saying that today's event could even be much worse.

Moore, OK is a large and populous suburb of Oklahoma City, and it has grown considerably in population and size since 1999. In addition to damage to Moore, this tornado was on the ground for about 20 miles, altogether.

Live streaming from KFOR.com (Channel 4) can be followed here (KFOR Live Stream).


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cieldumortModerator
Moderator


Reged: Mon
Posts: 1475
Loc: Austin, Tx 30.40N 97.80W
Re: May 20, 2013 Moore, OK Tornado [Re: cieldumort]
      #94289 - Mon May 20 2013 06:59 PM

The radar image below left is of today's Moore, OK tornado and its associated debris ball, known as a "TDS" (Tornado Debris Signature).

At its largest, the debris ball was up to 2.5 miles wide.

Below Left: Large image focused on the TDS. Below Right: Large 3D image of the entire tornado.

Image credits: Stu Ostro


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cieldumortModerator
Moderator


Reged: Mon
Posts: 1475
Loc: Austin, Tx 30.40N 97.80W
Re: May 20, 2013 Moore, OK Tornado [Re: cieldumort]
      #94290 - Tue May 21 2013 03:35 AM

Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims of yesterday's nightmare tornado. Certainly in the days and weeks ahead there will be lots of recovering going on - and most of all not simply of the architectural type.

Every weather tragedy has its silver linings. Sometimes they are obvious right away: lost loved ones found alive, most cherished items freakishly left undamaged while the rest of a home seemingly explodes, etc.

Many times the silver linings are in the form of lessons learned - what we can do different and better in the future to minimize loss of life, improvements in forecasting, changes to the way warnings are disseminated, etc.

While nowhere near as important as the true silver linings mentioned above, I think that readers of this forum may find the following observations noteworthy:

EF 4 & EF 5 tornadoes are such a rarity, that when we have them it *might* be possible to learn something more about what is going on with the climate at large. It is *possible* that they expose an important signal within what is often weather noise, being that weather is so fluid.

The 2013 Atlantic Hurricane Season is forecast to be a very active one, but one of the critical variables that has seasonal forecasters somewhat unsure of their expected totals is whether or not we flip to an El Nino, as El Ninos tend to significantly hamper tropical cyclone development in the Atlantic.

Currently, the best model predictions suggest that 2013 will be ENSO neutral, neither in a La Nina, or El Nino state. As such, forecasts calling for about 17 named storms/ 10 hurricanes/ 5 majors do not seem unreasonable, especially in light of the past 18 seasons (1995-2012).

I wanted to know if it might be possible to glean an ENSO trend correlating, coincidentally or not, with late May EF4/EF5 Oklahoma tornadoes, and while by no means is this on a level with something like a peer-reviewed paper, the data is interesting, and I share it here for your consideration:

Second Half of May EF4 & EF5 Oklahoma Tornadoes & That Hurricane Season's General ENSO State:
1955 = 3 Strong La Nina
1957 = 1 Strong El Nino
1962 = 2 Neutral
1971 = 1 Weak La Nina
1973 = 2 Strong La Nina
1981 = 1 Neutral
2011 = 3 Weak La Nina
2013 = 2 TBD

Top Years: 1955 (La Nina), 2011 (La Nina), 1973 (La Nina), 1962 (Neutral), 2013 (TBD).


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GlenJohnson
Weather Hobbyist


Reged: Sat
Posts: 57
Loc: Waldo Florida 29.79N 82.17W
Re: May 20, 2013 Moore, OK Tornado [Re: cieldumort]
      #94293 - Tue May 21 2013 09:51 PM

Quote:


Tornadoes in the Midwest
While other states may record more tornadoes per year than Illinois, Illinois still ranks as 9th in number of tornadoes. But even more significant is the severity of tornadoes. According to The Tornado Project, on the chart of the ten worst tornadoes, Illinois is the only state listed more than once - and it is listed 4 times!

April 21, 1967. ....a time many of us still remember.

The time of the tornado that struck Belvidere was instrumental in the high injury and death count. At 3:50 pm a violent tornado struck as children were boarding buses at Belvidere High School. Buses were overturned, 24 people were killed and 410 injured. 127 homes were destroyed with another 379 damaged. As the storm continued into McHenry county, another tornado touched down and headed toward Woodstock. The Belvidere-Woodstock tornadoes covered 25 miles.

At about 5 p.m., tornadoes struck Fox River Grove, Barrington Hills and Lake Zurich, producing a path of destruction nine miles long. The tornado killed one person and injured nearly 100. It destroyed 140 homes and damaged another 463.

Just before 5:30, the most devastating tornado of the afternoon touched down near Palos Hills. It continued through Oak Lawn, Hometown, Evergreen Park and the south side of Chicago; a 16-mile-long path, killing 33 people and injuring 500. It destroyed 152 homes and damaged more than 900.

A funnel cloud was observed passing over Romeoville and Lemont. It touched down east of Lagrange Road near 88th Avenue and 105th Street. It passed over the Tri-State Tollway then destroyed a drive-in theater. Many deaths and injuries occurred when the tornado hit a busy intersection at Southwest Highway and 95th Street during rush hour.

The tornado took several more lives when it hit a mobile home park and a skating rink near Cicero Avenue and Southwest Highway. It finally diminished in intensity as it moved through Evergreen Park and the south side of Chicago. It moved out over Lake Michigan near 79th Street.

Other tornadoes struck near Elgin, Geneva, and from Addison to Schiller Park.

The Chicago area tornadoes were part of a large tornado outbreak which also affected parts of northern Illinois, northern Missouri, southeast Iowa and southern lower Michigan. There were 19 tornadoes in Illinois.

The intense storm system moving through the Midwest on that day produced tornadoes with winds speeds reaching between 207-260 mph and destruction and damages near $50 million but even worse it took the lives of 58 of our neighbors and friends. Many which could have been saved with more awareness and preparation in times of disaster.

Information obtained from the National Weather Service of Chicago Illinois



The tornado that hit Belvidere went right over the top of our house, and I remember that year well. People thought I was crazy to leave the mid-west and move to hurricane country, but you couldn't get me to move back up there for love nor money. You can't fight a tornado.

--------------------
Be civil to all; sociable to many; familiar with few; friend to one; enemy to none.
Benjamin Franklin
Card carrying Storm Spotter
2015 Forecast - 11,6,3


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