An outbreak of Tornadoes, some potentially long-track and violent, is expected today into this evening over portions of northwest Texas into western and central Oklahoma.
More-isolated but still potentially dangerous severe weather, including Tornadoes and destructive winds and hail is possible in surrounding parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Arkansas.
Today has the potential to be a historic day. We will be covering this high risk event all day/night – here in the UK. To our readers in the affected areas, BE WEATHER READY!
An outbreak of strong Tornadoes and severe thunderstorms is expected today across parts of the southern and central Plains.
many of the storms will have very large hail and wind damage. The severe threat
will be concentrated from west Texas and the Texas Panhandle eastward across
Oklahoma, Kansas into western Missouri and western Arkansas.
severe storms with wind damage and hail will be possible this afternoon from
southeast New York into southern and central New England.
Yesterday and today marks the fifty
first anniversary of the outbreak.
The May 15th
-16th 1968 Tornado outbreak was a significant and deadly
event. The outbreak of Tornadoes affected the states listed below.
This outbreak produced thirty nine Tornadoes from 3:28pm on the 15th May till 2:50am on the 16th May. This included two F5/EF-5 Tornadoes in Iowa1.
1: The first
F5/EF-5 Tornado swept through five counties and sixty five miles. It affected
Charles City just before 5:00pm. This particular Tornado destroyed much of the
area. Damage figures were estimated up to thirty million dollars in Charles
City alone whilst one point five million dollars in damage was recorded
elsewhere. This F5/EF-5 killed thirteen people and injured almost four hundred
and sixty people.
featured photo of this article is that of the F5/EF-5 that struck Charles City –
however the photo was captured two miles southwest of the city by Floyd County
The second F5/EF-5
Tornado affected Fayette County at around 4:57pm. It destroyed or damaged
nearly a thousand homes. The hardest hit areas were Oelwein and Maynard where
homes were completely swept away from their foundations. Five people were
killed by this F5/EF-5 whilst one hundred and sixty were injured.
These were two
of four F5/EF-5 Tornadoes that struck the United States during the year of 1968
– the other two; southwestern Ohio on the 23rd April and Minnesota
on the 13th June. The next and last official F5/EF-5 Tornado that
touched down in Iowa was in Jordan on the 13th June 1976.
The thirty nine
Tornadoes spawned during this outbreak killed seventy two people and caused twelve
hundred injuries. You can find more details on the outbreak here.
This is an excellent idea! A business is aiming to keep the people of Arkansas safe by offering advertising billboards to be used during Tornado warnings – severe weather warnings.
Street Outdoor Advertising (company) created a system which will aloow a
Tornado Warning from the National Weather Service to be broadcasted across all
of their electronic signs in the area.
Warning messages will run uninterrupted – not bothering the golf veiwers –
until the warning ends. These Tornado Warning messages will run uninterrupted –
not bothering the golf veiwers – until the warning ends.
system was used on the 30th April in specified areas. The business
said the new alert system went into effect and displayed on thirty three
digital billboards in northwest Arkansas area alerting drivers of the potential
CEO of The Ashby Street Outdoor Advertising, suggested these billboards are
seen by nearly one hundred thousand people. Quote from the CEO can be found
“Drivers nowadays don’t listen to radio
anymore or not as much and hopefully not looking at their phone so if you are
thinking about it you might not be aware you might not know there is a Tornado
warning. It was a need, we felt like we were able to fill.”
The April 2011 super Tornado outbreak was one of the biggest, deadliest and most destructive severe weather and Tornado outbreaks in the U.S. Suffice to say some of a handful of the Tornadoes that touched down during the outbreak struck heavily populated areas.
Regardless of alerts well in
advance and short term warnings, the Tornadoes/storms killed three hundred and
twenty one people and injured almost three thousand people, according to National
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA – Storm prediction Center – SPC).
Nearly three hundred and fifty
Tornadoes touched down in around of the south, Midwest and northeast states of
the U.S. A majority of the Tornadoes that touched down during the April 2011 super
outbreak happened on the 27th April, according to the National
The most destructive Tornado, a multiple-vortex EF-4 Tornado, which took the lives of sixty five people and injured more than one thousand people alone swept through Tuscaloosa and Birmingham, Alabama during the afternoon/evening on the 27th April.
Suffice to say, within a
matter of minutes, ten per cent of Tuscaloosa was destroyed and more than one
thousand six hundred people were left homeless – including the students of
University of Alabama. It has to be said, the above mentioned Tornado was one
point five miles wide with winds of one hundred and ninety miles per hour.
The Tornado was on the ground for more than eighty miles.
It has to be stated: The same
supercell thunderstorm that produced the Tuscaloosa and Birmingham Tornado went
onto to spawn other Tornadoes that “skipped” along a three hundred and eighty
mile long path from Mississippi to North Carolina.
Three EF-5 Tornadoes, twelve EF-4
Tornadoes and twenty one EF-3 Tornadoes struck during the April 2011 super
Tornado outbreak. Some of the violent storms coincided areas that were hit with
severe weather and Tornadoes earlier in the month. April 2011 was a busy month!
A destructive and deadly
Tornado outbreak took place on the 14th – 16th April,
when one hundred and seventy eight Tornadoes touched down and resulted in the
deaths of almost fourty people across parts of the Plains, south and eastern
In closing, April 2011 saw a
record seven hundred and fifty Tornadoes strike the U.S, according to the SPC –
records go back to 1950.
We didn’t particularly want to make this a wordy article, however we wanted to give this significant outbreak a well-balanced and detailed introduction. Now you’ve read about it, now relive the April 2011 super outbreak thru the lens of a camera in the videos below.
Find an extensive video playlist of the Hackleburg/Phil Campbell EF5 Tornado below.
Furthermore, TV coverage and documentaries in regards to this outbreak can be found below.
UPDATE: A reader brought it to our attention that Smithville, Mississippi was struck by an EF-5 Tornado on the 27th April 2011 – watch two videos of the Tornado below.
Read a press release regarding this video at the bottom of
Mr & Mrs Boerjan should have stopped! In the video below, watch as a Tornado knocks the Boerjan’s car/camper off road in Arkansas.
The video was captured by Savannah
Boerjan on the day the Tornado struck. However, the video was then sold to
Subsequently, the video broker
posted the video on their official YouTube account.
Additionally, find photos below.
An Arkansas couple is crediting their seat belts for saving their lives after a run-in with a Tornado.
Savannah Boerjan and her
husband Brandon said they were driving home with their newly bought camper van
when they saw the Tornado touching down.
Savannah can be heard in the
video: “Speed up, get the f**k out of
here. Brandon, Brandon, I’m scared.”
The Boerjan’s continued to drive down the road however the
Before cracking their
windshield, blowing debris inside, Savannah shouted: “It’s right there, oh my god. Dear god, heaven please forgive me for my
sins. Brandon, we’re going to die. I love you, I love yo…”