The Largest Tornado On Record

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As you know, today is the anniversary of the devastating tornado that struck Joplin, MO. All told almost 160 died and 1000 were injured. There are so many stories related to this tragic situation that I decided NOT to blog about it that much today since there is really nothing I can add to the conversation. Go to the NWS site for more information about the particulars concerning that tornado.

What is interesting to me is that this May has been dramatically less active than last May. As a matter of fact the whole severe weather season has been so different than last year.

As you know though, I do like posting videos of these events, and here is a video that I saw for the first time a few months ago that shows the actual formation of the tornado. What I want to point out to you is how quickly it goes from a wispy very small thing to a large and violent tornado…it was a matter of seconds, whereas in other tornadoes it will sometimes take minutes for it to intensify like it did. There is a lot of wind noise on the video, so you might want to mute the sound.

At it’s worst the tornado had a width of about 3/4 to 1 mile which is pretty typical for tornadoes of that nature. MOST tornadoes have a width less than 100 yards and many are much smaller than that. I bring this up because today is also the anniversary of the LARGEST tornado on record. It occurred in 2004 in Hallam, NE and was 2 1/2 miles wide. It was an F4 tornado and this is what it looked like on radar.

This is what it looked like…

Our weather here…just getting increasingly hot with little chance of rain around the metro and points southward for at least the next 5-6 days and maybe longer. Far north MO nearest the IA border will have a chance later THU or FRI AM, but it’s tough to imagine the metro getting in on the action unless there is some sort of boundary or weird wave that can do something to an increasing cap in the region on Friday. By FRI PM we are capped and jumping into the hot air that will last through the weekend with highs near to above 90° and some potential for records to be tied or broken.

The lack of rainfall now is starting to be concerning to me for the KC area.


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