Alabama has been struck by fifty three Tornadoes in only four months

It’s been a busy year for Tornadoes in Alabama to say the least!

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Birmingham, Alabama (AL) have put out a statement this week looking at 2019’s Tornadoes so far, safe to suggest it was astonishing.

We’re only four months into the 2019 Tornado season, and AL has been struck by fifty three Tornadoes.

Comparing that with 2018, when forty six Tornadoes struck AL – all year.

“The 30-year average count for Alabama Tornadoes in an entire year is 47. Therefore, we have already eclipsed the year average and we are not even through the spring severe weather season.”

NWS Birmingham, AL (Branch)

It’s suffice to say that this loosely runs from March through to May. One of the 2019 Tornadoes was the deadly EF-4 that struck Lee County on the 3rd March, killing twenty three people.

Find further relating-statistics from the weather service below:

  • There were twenty eight Tornadoes in AL in March – highest on record since 1950.
  • The Fifty three Tornadoes in AL before the end of April rank second all-time behind 2011.
  • AL has had nine Tornado days already in 2019. The thirty-year average is not far away, twelve point six.
  • The Fifty three Tornadoes confirmed so far this year make 2019 already number thirteen far annual number of Tornadoes since 1950
  • Of the fifty three Tornadoes confirmed so far this year, twenty four have been EF-0s and twenty three have been EF-1s. There have also been five EF-2 Tornadoes and one EF-4 Tornado.

“2019 still has a long way to go!”

NWS Birmingham, AL (Branch)

This post was inspired by this relating article produced by AL.com. You can read that article here.  

Tim Marshall’s Lee County, AL Tornado damage surveying trip in photos

Some of the photos you have to see to believe!

No words needed. Find photos taken by Tim Marshall during his Lee County, Alabama Tornado damage surveying trip below – quotes above photos come from Marshall.

“’Tim Marshall’ is surveying tornado damage in Lee County. Seeing a combination of poorly anchored and unanchored manufactured homes.”

Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall

“AL CARNAGE: Vast majority of the 23 deaths were in manufactured homes.”

Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall

“MOWED FOREST: Mile after mile of flattened pine forest. No doubt about where the tornado track was.”

Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall

“THE BIG FAIL: Site built homes on concrete slabs had anchor bolts but no nuts or washers to secure the wall plates to the slabs. What the ???”

Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall

“TREE STOPPERS: Vaulted and tossed homes that were stopped by trees”

Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall

“Vehicles caught by the Tornado. Reminders of why we don’t want to get too close.”

Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall

“EF-4 HOME: Examined this house where the NWS assigned the highest rating for this tornado. It was one of the better, self-built homes. At least it would meet code. Wall studs were toenailed to properly bolted base plates. According to a relative, four occupants survived by hiding in the steel bathtub. Many people stopped by to autograph the remaining closet wall, now a shrine.”

Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall

“THAT’S A WRAP! Dr. Daphne LaDue spoke with many storm victims to learn what they did to seek shelter during the tornado. In all, we examined 30 manufactured homes and 11 site built homes in detail. Teaming up social scientists with damage surveyors yielded great information. This research is just beginning!”

Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall
Photo credit: Tim Marshall

That’s a wrap for this post! Let us know what you think of the photos in the comments below.

President Trump signs bibles during Alabama Tornado visit

Photo credit: Mickey Welsh

Today, President Donald Trump signed bibles for people affected by the deadly Tornadoes that struck Alabama this past Sunday.

Trump signed the bibles whilst visiting a Baptist church in Opelika, AL – which is presently serving as a disaster relief centre.

Ada Ingram told reports that the president signed several hats and bibles, including one for a twelve-year-old boy, a gesture which drew a round of applause from people who came to see Trump.

The president and first lady Melania Trump spent a majority of the day touring areas in Lee County, AL that were damaged by the Tornadoes.

Photo credit: Josh Dawsey

Twenty three people including a handful of children perished in the Tornadoes – it’s suffice to say Trump met with the victims.

Trump signed an emergency disaster declaration earlier this week authorising federal aid for the area – find relating tweet below.


UPDATE: Video from Trump’s visit to AL has started emerge online – watch in the videos below.

Original source – The Hill

Dan Satterfield’s blog on the Lee County, AL Tornado is a crucial read…

…which deserved its own post here on Tornado Videos.

Before we get into post, we’re going to introduce the man behind the blog. Dan Satterfield has worked as an on-air meteorologist for over thirty years in Alabama, Florida and Oklahoma.

Now back to our regularly scheduled post. Satterfield took to his blog on agu.org and penned his thoughts on the Lee County, Alabama Tornado. Suffice he did an excellent job, read two excerpts from the post below.

Excerpt 1

“Sirens Are So Last Century

Let’s get the sirens out of the way first. They are not (and never were) designed to be heard indoors. We are talking 1930’s technology, and while some days it may not seem like it, we are living in 2019. People have smart-phones that make Star Trek communicators look old fashioned, and every one of them will alert you to severe weather warnings. Weather sirens are so last century and frankly are a total waste of tax money except in a few specific locations. There are better and more cost-effective ways to alert people to severe weather danger.”

Excerpt 2

“Plenty of Warning

The Storm Prediction Center issued an outlook 24 hours in advance of the tornado that was dead on. They issued a Watch more than 2 hours before the storm and they deserve credit for what I would almost label an eerily accurate forecast. Most residents had at least 9 minutes under a Tornado Warning before the monster cloud with 170 mph winds developed at 2 PM CST last Sunday.

The Tornado Watch was issued by the SPC at 11:40 AM CST. That is over 2 hours before the tornado formed. Read the wording below.

It’s clear that residents had plenty of warning that deadly weather was possible, but 23 died and 90 were injured along the 23-mile path of the EF 4 tornado. Why such a high death toll with all that warning?”

It’s an absolutely incredible piece, which you can read in full here.

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Questions asked regarding mobile home performance during recent Tornadoes

Before we get into the post, we’re going to introduce the man who asked the questions. David B. Roueche is the assistant professor in CE at Auburn, AL University.

Roueche applies engineering principles to understand and reduce impacts of weather-related natural hazards. Now, back to our regularly scheduled post.

In nine separate tweets, Roueche put eight separate difficult questions to Brian Hastings (@AlabamaEMA) regarding mobile home performance during the Tornado outbreak in Alabama and Georgia in which twenty three people killed.

We think it’s fair to say, these questions need to be answered. You can find Roueche’s tweeted questions below.


Now that you’ve had the chance to read them, now you can read some of the replies these questions got below.

We’re not particular impressed with this reply, however we wanted to feature it.

It’s safe to say this particular subject is a much-needed debate in congress. Let us know your thoughts and even answers to Roueche’s questions below in the comments.

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Photo of Lee County, AL EF-4 Tornado track has emerged online

A photo of the Lee County, AL EF-4 Tornado track has emerged online – see below.

The photo was captured by Zach Amason – five thousand feet up in the air whilst on a flight. The photo was posted on Twitter by James Spann.

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Chaser who went above and beyond in AL Tornado Outbreak offers update

Read this first: Selfless chaser goes above and beyond in AL Tornado Outbreak

We’re not going to say anything, we’re going to turn it over to Rich Lewis to give us his update – which he posted on his Facebook wall.

“Just want to give everyone an update. I just got back home to Birmingham about 30 min ago. I can’t find the words to describe how I am feeling emotionally. I’m exhausted and have so much on my mind. 14 hours of SAR operations has taken its toll on me. The damage I witnessed in Beauregard AL was horrific.

The only damage I’ve seen that was worse was Joplin. The entire area looked like a war zone. Trees were debarked as if you’d peel a banana. Homes completely wiped from their foundations. County Rd 39 and Cave Mill Road, the epi-centre of ground zero had pavement scoured away which was a big factor in the EF-4 rating.

Photo credit: Rich Lewis

At 6 am we still had 20 people missing and many still trapped under rubble. Sadly two more casualties were uncovered bringing the fatality total to 24. A specialized team with cadaver dogs was present, and seeing that hit me hard in the pit of my stomach. They aren’t there for search and rescue.

They are there prepared for recovery. It doesn’t get any more sobering than that. Overnight SAR concentrated heavily on the wooded areas surrounding the heaviest damage path. One crew found a gentleman displaced 1/4 mile away from his home. The crew I was with found multiple survivors buried under mounds of tree debris.

Photo credit: Rich Lewis

I talked to numerous survivors that have lost their entire family. One young man lost both his parents, and both sets of Grandparents to this tornado. Children were amount the casualties, the youngest a 6 year old boy, an 8 year old little girl, and a 10 year old girl who will never come home from a sleepover at a friend’s house.

It was about as bad as it can get. I cried almost the whole way home this afternoon.

I believe casualties could have been lessened significantly if people had taken the warnings more serious. The common theme I heard throughout today was we didn’t see a tornado, we didn’t know one was on the ground. Some of the worst killers hide shrouded in rain. Just because you don’t see a tornado, doesn’t mean there isn’t one.

Photo credit: Rich Lewis

Lead time was 9 minutes from the moment the tornado touched down to the epi-centre of ground zero in the heaviest damage zone. However the first reports of this storm going tornadic happened just east of Montgomery and 1:30 and was tornado warned shortly thereafter.

It is vital to be weather aware on days such as yesterday. Have a ready action plan in place. And if you know you’re in the path of a tornadic storm, that’s the time to start taking precautions. Don’t wait until you hear sirens, don’t wait until you see the tornado, because it’s too late.

Yesterday’s tornado was so heavily rain-wrapped very few got a glimpse of the monster lurking behind the walls of precip anyways. Yesterday and into the overnight will stay with me for the rest of my life. This isn’t my first tornado disaster or SAR, but this one was definitely different.

It hit me harder as it’s the first time I connected with the victims on a deep emotional level. I want to take this moment to thank everyone for their kind messages, words of encouragement, gratitude, and the all the posts. I was overwhelmed when I saw the amount of support I had when I got home. Today was very rough, but each and every one of you reminded me why it’s important to give back. Thank you.”

Again, we can’t thank you enough for what you did Rich.

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Incredible drone footage of Lee County, AL Tornado

Incredible footage!

Drone footage of the deadly Lee County, AL Tornado has emerged online – watch in the video below.

The footage was captured by Taylor Campbell yesterday, however the footage was uploaded to Live Storms Media’s official YouTube account.

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Lee County, AL Tornado captured on bar surveillance camera

The videos keep coming!

The Lee County, AL Tornado has been captured on a bar surveillance camera – watch in the video below.

The video was posted by WKRG today on their official YouTube account.

If you look closely, you can see the cell tower collapse more clearly.

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Preliminary EF-4 Tornado damage has been found according to NWS

In a tweet posted approximately fifteen minutes, The National Weather Service (NWS – Birmingham, AL branch) has suggested EF-4 Tornado damage has been found.

The damage was found along County Road 39 just east of Cave Mill Road in southwestern Lee County.

Winds have been estimate at one hundred and seventy miles per hour. Single family homes were completely destroyed.

This is a developing story and will have more as it comes.

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AL Tornado survivor Earnestine Reese: “you tell god thank you!”

We love you Earnestine! <3

In the video below, watch Earnestine Reese (seventy two years old) talking to family moments after she was pulled from the debris of her destroyed home.

The video was captured yesterday by Delrico Eiland and was posted by James Spann.

Even though Reese suffered a broken hip, this lady is strong as hell! We wish her all the best and a speedy recovery.

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NWS suggests First Lee County Tornado ‘at least an EF-3’

NWS had someone on the ground in Lee County before the sun went down.

The National Weather Service (NWS – Birmingham, AL branch) has suggested via a tweet that the first Tornado impact Lee County, AL was at least an EF-3.

In the tweet, NWS also suggested that it was ½ mile wide. However, this pending further/more detailed assessment today.

This is a developing story and will have more as it comes. However, we firmly believe that it was a low-end EF-4.

It is with regret that we have to report that twenty three people have been killed by the Tornadoes including an eight year old girl. Related article can be read here.

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