Super Outbreak of 2018
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The Littleton, Colorado EF3 on May 2nd.
Date of tornado outbreak: 5:01 PM EST, May 1st - 11:59 PM EST, May 4th
Duration1: 4 days, 6 hours, 58 minutes
Maximum rated tornado2: EF5 tornado
Highest winds 367 mph (590 km/h)

(Oklahoma City, Oklahoma EF5 on May 3rd)

Tornadoes caused: 782
Total Damages: $129 billion+ (2018 USD)
Total Fatalities: 27,832
Areas Affected: Contiguous United States, Alaska and Hawaii, United States

1Time from first tornado to last tornado
2Most severe tornado damage; see wikipedia:Enhanced Fujita Scale

The 2018 Super Outbreak was a catastrophic and huge Super Outbreak that occurred over a course of 4 days. In total, over $129 billion in damages was done, 27,832 people died, and 617,143+ more were injured.

A record 782 tornadoes touched down as a massive tropical wave moved inland and caused not only deadly, catastrophic, and violent tornadoes, the outbreak also caused record breaking tornadoes. The outbreak caused 93 EF4-EF5 tornadoes, shattering the record of 30 by the 1974 Super Outbreak. The outbreak also saw a record of 344 tornadoes in one day on May 1, beating out the previous record of 305 on March 23, 2018, and 216 on April 27, 2011. In addition, this outbreak caused the most damage in a single outbreak with over $129 billion dollars alone in damage. The 2018 Clermont-Groveland-Four Corners, Florida Tornado caused the most fatalities and damage throughout all 782 twisters.

After most twisters in the Midwest, the storm not only shifted southeast, the storm also stayed in position, while extra damage occurred with thunderstorms knocking down trees, causing accidents, and even killing cattle. The states with the most confirmed tornadoes were Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa, Nebraska, and Missouri. 75% of the tornadoes in the outbreak were rated EF0 or EF1, 24% were rated EF2 or EF3, then only 1% of the tornadoes were rated EF4 or EF5. The strongest tornado was the Oklahoma City EF5 with 367 mph winds capable of causing EF6 damage on May 3rd. The weakest tornado was an EF0 near Loveland, Colorado on May 4th with 35 mph winds.

The outbreak also set a record for most confirmed EF5 tornadoes with 17.


782 416 154 66 50 76 17

The outbreak caused a record of 375 tornadoes on May 2nd alone, beating out the previous record of 305 in the March 2018 outbreak a little over a month prior.

The tornado convective outlook for May 1st.

Notable Tornadoes

A total of 419 EF0's, 154 EF1's, 66 EF2's, 50 EF3, 76 EF4's, and 17 EF5 tornadoes touched down during the outbreak.

Of the 17 rated EF5's, the weakest tornado was the Joplin EF5 with recorded wind speeds exactly at 200 miles per hour. The strongest was the Oklahoma City EF5 with recorded wind speeds of up to 367 miles per hour. Oklahoma and Texas had the most confirmed EF5's during the outbreak with a confirmed total of 4 each . The states with the second most was Nebraska and Kansas with 3 each. Florida, Missouri, and Ohio also had 1 confirmed EF5 each. Oklahoma had the most confirmed tornadoes with 321, followed by Kansas with 212.

Daily Statistics

Date Total  EF0   EF1   EF2   EF3   EF4   EF5  Deaths Injuries
May 1 157 66 54 19 2 12 4 109 1,222
May 2 375 265 34 14 23 35 4 17,586 347,031
May 3 124 39 30 17 18 13 7 9,894 217,103+
May 4 126 49 36 16 7 16 2 242 5,559
Total 782 419 154 66 50 76 17 27,832 617,143+

May 1

May 1st was the second most active day of the outbreak with 157 confirmed twisters, 18 of them were rated EF3+. The 1st was also the second most active in minor tornadoes with a confirmed total of 120 EF0 or EF1 rated tornadoes.

157 66 54 19 2 12 4

Main Article: List of tornadoes in the 2018 Super Outbreak

The strongest tornado on the 1st was the Stanton EF5 that killed 3 people with wind speeds of up to 265 mph (426 km/h). The weakest tornado was an EF0 near Spiro, Oklahoma with wind speeds up to 40 mph.

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Owasso tornado as seen from Tulsa Intern 0 35188205 ver1.0 640 480

The EF3 Tulsa tornado right before touching down.

The first tornado of the outbreak touched down at 4:01 PM CDT just south of Tulsa. The only real damage the high-end EF3 with maximum wind speeds of 165 mph did was badly damage the BOK Center before it dissipated at 5:03 pm leaving 1 dead and 17 people injured.

Moore, Oklahoma

Fat tornado 1

The Moore EF5 tornado 3 miles west of Moore.

The first EF5 and one of the strongest tornadoes of the outbreak touched down just south of Moore at 4:37 PM CDT on May 1, 2018. The tornado tracked slowly into Moore and intensifying very quickly into an EF3. The tornado then tracked into the community of Autumn Oaks as a EF4. The tornado left catastrophic damage to the community. The tornado then tracked into the path of Moore High School. Moore High School was left with nothing after the tornado swept through it at EF5 strength with 235 mph winds. The tornado then tracked into more neighborhoods then as an EF3. Then, at 6:21 PM CDT, the tornado dissipated 6 miles north of Moore leaving 29 dead, 1,205 injured and over 15,000 people homeless.

Stanton-Pilger, Nebraska

Fat tornado 2

One of the Stanton- Pilger, Nebraska EF4's.

Approximately 29 minutes after the Moore tornado touched down, the first of many Stanton-Pilger, Nebraska tornadoes touched down at 5:06 PM CDT near Marshal. The tornado started off as an EF1 then intensified into an EF3 as in approached Woodland Park. Then, the tornado crossed Nebraska Highway 57 as it hit 2 cars, killing the combined 3 people inside of them. The EF3 then intensified into the high peak of an EF4. The highest wind speeds were recorded at 196 mph. The EF4 then entered one of the two major towns hit, Pilger. The tornado hit many houses and farms killing another person. The tornado then traveled approximately 14 miles until it hit Stanton County's county seat, Stanton. The EF4 damaged many houses and businesses until it dissipated as an EF0 at 6:49 PM CDT. Then, not long after the first tornado dissipated, two more tornadoes touched down. The first tornado that was a EF3 weakened into an EF1, meanwhile, the second tornado strengthened into a aggressive and violent EF4.

2010 05 24B

The third Stanton-Pilger tornado on the weaker side of an EF3.

The second tornado dissipated and another tornado touched down as an EF2. The EF4 then strengthened into an aggressive EF5. The fourth tornado then strengthened into an EF4. The twin tornadoes then split up and the fourth reached EF5 status. The third tornado then entered the town of Madison at EF5 status with wind speeds up to 265 mph. The tornado then swept through the town and went back towards then town of Stanton but the town of Norfolk was in it's path. The fourth tornado of the Stanton-Pilger family and second EF5 went towards Pilger. The third tornado and first EF5 weakened to an EF2 then dissipated at 7:44 pm 16 miles east of Stanton. The fourth tornado then also dissipated at 7:57 pm 4 miles north of Madison . Then, more havoc was wreaked when a large tornado touched down at 9:03 PM CDT.

16 June 1992 Chandler tornado

The fourth tornado of the Pilger- Stanton family 2 miles south of Stanton.

Rowlett tornado dec 26 update

The 5th tornado of the Stanton-Pilger tornado family at 9:56 pm as an EF5.

The tornado quickly reached EF4 status at 9:19 PM CDT. The recorded wind speed was up to 199 mph before it reached EF5 status at 9:49 PM CDT 3 miles northeast of Pilger. The EF5 then completely swept the Stanton County Courthouse away. The tornado then tracked 14 miles southwest back into the almost destroyed town of Stanton until it tracked a little over 22 miles into the alerted town of Battle Creek. The final tornado of the Stanton-Pilger tornado touched down as a satellite tornado. The final EF5 tornado of the family dissipated 5 miles west of Stanton right after its satellite tornado dissipated.

May 2

375 265 34 14 23 35 4

The strongest tornado on the 2nd was the Clermont EF5 with recorded wind speeds of 318 mph (511 km/h). The weakest tornado was an EF0 with recorded wind speeds of 38 mph near Tavares, Florida.

Hackleburg, Alabama


The Hackleburg EF4 approaching Hackleburg.

The first violent tornado of May 2nd and the second day of the outbreak touched down at 7:44 AM CDT. The tornado touched down 5 miles south of Phil Campbell. The then EF2 killed 2 people after destroying a mobile home until in intensified into its highest peak, an EF4 as it approached Hackleburg. The tornado destroyed 3,500 homes, injuring 4,500 and killed 9 before dissipating 8 miles south of Hackleburg. The highest recorded wind speeds were 190 mph. The EF4 tornado left 11 people dead and 5,549 were left injured.

Clermont-Groveland-Four Corners, Florida

Main Article: 2018 Clermont-Groveland-Four Corners, Florida Tornado

The Clermont EF5 tornado approaching downtown Clermont.

At 10:56 AM EST, many separate thunderstorms began producing funnel clouds. The strongest tornado was the Clermont EF5 tornado. The tornado first touched down at 11:05 AM EST. The tornado, an EF1 badly damaged many mobile homes 8 miles northeast of Clermont before intensifying into an EF3 and causing back ups on the Florida Turnpike, Florida State Road 429 and Interstate 4. The tornado then moved towards Florida State Road 50 before hitting many houses, businesses, gas stations, stores, a nursing home, and badly damaging South Lake Hospital before moving south down US Route 27 and throwing three tractor trailers and a tractor 720 yards, killing 5. The now EF5 tornado then hit many neighborhoods like Tradds Landing, Sawgrass Bay, Sienna Ridge, Orange Tree, The Savannas, Weston Hills, Greater Groves, Eagle Ridge, Westchester, Ashton Chase, Cagan Crossings, Rain Tree, Sunrise Lakes, and Woodridge.

The tornado reached wind speeds up to 318 mph when it hit Four Corners Upper School while they were in the middle of classes. Of the approximate 1,500 students at the school at least 750 died before the killer tornado killed another 1,500 on Interstate 4 and then dissipating at 1:37 PM EST.


Four Corners Upper School after the EF5 tornado left up to 750 dead.

A satellite tornado then touched down with EF3 damage being recorded to Champions Gate apartments about 0.5 miles away from Four Corners Upper School. Then, another small tornado touched down and it was on the ground for only a couple of minutes before it dissipated with EF0 damage.

The EF5 dissipated after leaving 16,763 people dead, another 317,609 injured, and $81.6 billion (2018 USD) in damages.

Dodge City, Kansas

The 2nd EF3 of May 2nd touched down at 1:35 PM CDT as an EF1 25 miles south of Dodge City, Kansas. The tornado strengthened into an EF2 damaging businesses, mobile homes, and hospitals. The strongest recorded wind speeds were up to 155 mph according to KWCH just about 3 miles southwest outside of Dodge City. The tornado then weakened but back to an EF0 but then strengthened back to an EF3 before a small rope tornado touched down.


The Dodge City EF3 tornado approaching Ensign, KS.

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The EF3 tornado with the satellite tornado.

The satellite tornado dissipated about 5 minutes after touching down. Meanwhile, the EF3 weakened back to an EF1. The EF1 then dissipated at 2:43 PM CDT after leaving 9 people injured, 3 critically.

Littleton, Colorado


The Littleton EF3 5 miles southwest of Columbine High School.

At 1:57 PM UTC, a funnel cloud touched the ground 5 miles north of downtown Littleton, Colorado. The tornado intensified quickly into an EF3, the strongest it would get. The tornado then tracked west right into the path of Columbine High School. The wind speeds of 160 mph caused most of the roof of Columbine High School to get torn off. The library, cafeteria, and at least 25 classrooms were either badly damaged or destroyed. The tornado then tracked east back towards Littleton. The tornado then weakened to a EF1 until it intensified back to a EF3. The tornado then destroyed at least 25 mobile homes killing 19. The tornado then tracked 5 miles northeast back towards Columbine High School where the tornado dissipated 2 miles north of Columbine at 3:09 PM CDT. The EF3 left 19 dead, 43 injured, and 3,205 homes either destroyed or damaged.

Iona-Rigby, Idaho


The Iona-Rigby EF4 approaching Rigby, ID.

The second EF4 tornado of May 2nd happened in Iona and Rigby, Idaho. The tornado touched down at 3:40 PM UTC. The tornado strengthened to an EF3. The tornado then badly damaged about 200 homes and 56 mobile homes, killing 43. The tornado then intensified into an EF4 when it approached the town of Rigby. The now EF3 slowly went through Rigby, until the tornado went back up to EF4 strength. The now EF4 teared through Rigby High School leaving devastating damage. The EF4 weakened back down to an EF2 tornado about 6.5 miles outside of Iona. The now EF0 tornado dissipated about 2.3 miles from Iona 5:19 PM UTC where the tornado left catastrophic damage to the town.

Abilene-Chapman, Kansas


The first of many EF4 Abilene-Chapman tornadoes.

The first of many tornadoes of the Abilene-Champan, Kansas tornado family touched down at 4:57 PM CDT. It quickly intensified to a EF3 tornado. It shredded the towns of Carlton and Hope. Then, it went right into the path of Chapman High School. The tornado then, not only left catastrophic damage to Chapman High School, it also almost swept the whole town of Chapman off the map. Then, the now EF3 tornado headed towards the town of Abilene. The EF3 strengthened back to an EF4 tornado when it hit Abilene. The huge EF4 got bigger in size when it hit 3 communities at once!

After leaving incredible damage, the EF4 was greeted by two other tornadoes, an EF4 and an EF3 that both left incredible damage. The EF3 dissipated, before another 2 EF3 tornadoes touched down. The first EF4 that touched down weakened to an EF1, while the other EF4 weakened to an EF3. After the first tornado dissipated at 6:04 PM CDT, the first two EF3's weakened to EF0's while the third EF3 dissipated at 6:16 PM CDT. The two EF0's both dissipated at 6:19 PM CDT 5 miles south of Abilene. At 6:31 PM CDT, another EF3 touched the ground 4 miles northeast of Woodbine. The tornado weakened into an EF2 then dissipated at 6:39 PM CDT. Then, another set of twin touched down at 6:46 PM CDT as EF2's. The first one weakened and dissipated while the second tornado grew to EF4 status.


The first of many EF3 tornadoes in the Abilene-Chapman family. The photo was taken before then EF3 came in contact with the two other EF4 tornadoes.

Another tornado touched down at 7:04 PM CDT as an EF4. The first tornado weakened to an EF2 while the second tornado intensified to an EF5. A second tornado touched down as an EF4. The EF5 tornado tracked 14.5 miles to Junction City where the 245 mph winds inside of the tornadoes destroyed 5 communties leaving 3 dead. After being on the ground for a little over an hour, the EF2 dissipated at 7:49 PM CDT. The EF5 weakened and dissipated at 8:23 PM CDT. At 8:53 PM, the last and deadliest tornado of the Abilene- Champan tornado family touched down. It quickly grew to EF4 status until it reached EF5 strenghth. It completely destroyed the towns of Chapman, Abilene, Carlton, Hope, Manchester, and Enterprise before dissipating at 10:09 PM CDT. In total, the Abilene-Chapman tornado family left 697 dead, 12,821 injured, and 25,000 people homeless.

Jarrell, Texas

Main Article: 2018 Jarrell, Texas Tornado
Tornado 1401

The EF5 tornado approaching Jarrell, TX.

The first tornado in Texas of the oubreak happened in Jarrell. The funnel cloud that produced the Jarrell tornado touched down at 6:23 PM CDT 12 miles north of Austin and traveled into Jarrell as an EF2. But, the tornado quickly strengthened to an EF4. The tornado then reached EF5 strength. Quickly, the tornado destroyed houses, stores, and businesses near Jarrell. The tornado entered Jarrell with recorded wind speeds of up to 290 mph. The EF5 then left catastrophic damage to Jarrell and entered the neighborhood of Sonterra. The tornado destroyed over 150 homes and killed 34 people before dissipating 7 miles west of Jarrell at 7:48 PM CDT.

May 3

124 39 30 17 18 13 7

The strongest tornado was the Oklahoma City EF5 with wind speeds of up to 367 mph (590 km/h). The weakest tornado was the EF0 near Loveland, Colorado.

Houston-Pasadena, Texas

Main Article: 2018 Houston-Pasadena Tornado

The second deadliest tornado touched down near Houston, Texas. The confirmed EF5 killed 4,035 and injured over 20,000 people while causing a fourthly record of $18 billion dollars in damage.


The EF5 near peak intensity.

The EF5 first touched down near Houston before traveling towards Pasadena with a forward speed of 70 mph. The tornado was the 2nd deadliest tornado of the outbreak and fourth costliest behind the Clermont EF5 from the previous day. The tornado also originally set a record for most injuries by a single tornado.

With the tornado not dying out anytime soon, the NWS issued a tornado emergency for Houston and surrounding suburbs throughout the Houston Metropolitan area.

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Main Article: 2018 Oklahoma City Tornado

The strongest EF5 tornado about 17 miles west of Oklahoma City.

The fastest wind speed ever and in the tornado outbreak happened in the early morning hours of May 2. A supercell generated many thunderstorms that produced many, big, and violent tornadoes. The first and weakest tornado touched down at 4:31 AM CDT. The EF0 left minor damage to roofs and garages before dissipating at 4:46 AM CDT.

Two more tornadoes touched the ground at 5:09 AM CDT. The first twin, an EF2 intensified into an EF4 while the second tornado, also an EF2, intensified into and EF3. The EF4 quickly intensified into an EF5. The EF3 then also intensified into an EF5. The first twin crossed the destroyed town of Moore, which had catastrophic damage from an EF5 tornado 2 days before on April 30. The 2nd twin then headed towards the town of Bridge Creek. The 1st twin weakened and dissipated at 6:37 AM CDT after leaving behind 12 people dead and 547 people injured. The 2nd twin just dodged the town of Bridge Creek before dissipating at 6:56 AM CDT after the EF5 behemoth left 24 people dead and 1,235 people injured. The next tornado touched down near Norman at 7:17 AM CDT. The EF1 grew to EF3 strength. The EF3 then dissipated at 7:35 AM CDT leaving 8 dead after the EF3 completely destroyed 4 mobile homes. The next to last tornado in the Oklahoma City area touched down at 8:04 AM CDT near El Reno. The then EF0 rapidly intensified to an EF4. The 2.2 mile wide EF4 destroyed up to 25 mobile homes leaving 17 dead until dissipating at 9:12 AM CDT.

The biggest, strongest, and most violent tornado touched down at 9:23 AM CDT.  The EF2 quickly intensified into an EF4 5 miles outside of downtown Oklahoma City. The EF4 rapidly grew more stronger and more violent into an EF5 with recorded wind speeds of up to 367 mph. The tornado completely destroyed 7 apartment buidings, killing 436. The tornado then tracked into Oklahoma City, killing another 650. The behemoth then badly damaged the Chesapeake Energy Arena killing another 2. The tornado then tracked west near El Reno, near where the killer EF4 was tracking. The EF5 then destroyed another 300 mobile homes, killing 342. The tornado then weakened into an EF3, where the twister killed another 2 after a mobile home has completely destroyed. The EF3 then weakened into an EF0 where it minorly damaged houses. The EF0 dissipated at 11:48 AM CDT.

There has been public outcry stating that the downtown Oklahoma City tornado should have earned an EF6 and not an EF5. The national weather service center in Dodge City, Kansas and in Norman, Oklahoma state that there was no clear evidence of EF6 damage.

Anadarko, Oklahoma


The EF3 approaching Anadarko.

The Anadarko tornado first touched down at 9:52 AM CDT. It quickly grew to EF3 status. The EF3 tornado badly damaged 15 mobile homes, killing 7. The tornado tracked towards the towns of Binger and Apache, where the EF3 left 23 dead after completely leveling 43 mobile homes. The now EF2 moved back towards Anadarko where another person was killed after the tornado struck their vehicle. The now EF3 moved into the town of Hydro before dissipating at 10:37 AM CDT.

Joplin, Missouri


The Joplin EF5 approaching Joplin, MO.

A supercell developed 5 miles southeast of Joplin, Missouri at 10:31 AM CDT. The supercell caused many funnel clouds to reach the ground. Besides the 6 major tornadoes, there was 12 other tornadoes confirmed (7 EF0 and 5 EF1).

The first major tornado touched down at 10:56 AM CDT. The EF1 rapidly intensified to an EF4 tornado. The EF4 tornado swept through two suburbs of Jasper. The EF4 then completely destroyed the US Army Reserve Center at estimated wind speeds of 190 mph. The EF4 tornado then weakened to an EF0 before dissipating 3 miles northeast of Joplin at 11:28 AM CDT. The second and third tornadoes both touched down at 11:42 AM CDT. Both of them started out as EF4's but the 1st twin weakened to an EF3, while the second one intensified to an EF5. The EF3 then intensified back up to an EF4. The first set of Joplin twin tornadoes splitted up at about 5 miles south of Joplin. The EF5 then tracked straight for the city of Alba. Alba was badly damaged by the EF5 tornado and 3 were left dead with 19 injured. The EF5 tornado weakened down to an EF1 and then dissipated at 1:17 PM CDT. The EF4 tornado stayed at its EF4 strength before dissipating 11.3 miles northwest of Joplin.

The fourth, fifth, and sixth tornadoes of the Joplin family all touched down at 12:09 PM CDT. The first triplet was a very weak EF0 and dissipated at 12:12 PM CT. The second triplet intensified into an EF4 and the third triplet also intensified into an EF4. The second triplet entered a suburb of Joplin, while his twin brother stayed in its position. After the second triplet swept through a gated community, its twin followed behind leaving more catastrophic damage. At least 23 were left dead after both tornadoes swept through many communities. The second twin dissipated at 1:28 PM CDT and the third twin dissipated at 2:02 PM CDT. In all, every single tornado from the Joplin family killed 28 and injured 265.

Henryville, Indiana


One of the many Henryville EF4 tornadoes 15 miles northeast of Henryville.

A thunderstorm near Henryville, Indiana caused many funnel clouds to touch the ground. The first tornado, an EF2 touched down at 11:45 AM CDT. The tornado tracked west and killed 1 after a mobile home was destroyed. The tornado then dissipated at 12:24 PM CDT.

The second tornado touched down at 12:03 PM CDT. The EF2 tornado quickly intensified to an EF4 with recorded wind speeds of 175 mph. At 12:17 PM CDT, another tornado touched down, 5 miles south of the then EF3 tornado that would then turn in to a twin EF4 tornado. The third tornado to touch down rapidly intensified also to an EF4 tornado. At approximately 12:39 PM CDT, both tornadoes crossed paths at EF4 intensity. The two tornadoes then left catastrophic damage to many neighborhoods, leaving 9 dead. The first twin dissipated at 1:13 PM CDT, while the second twin dissipated at 1:24 PM CDT.

Emporia, Kansas


The Emporia EF4 twin tornadoes.

The first of two EF4 tornadoes that hit Emporia, Kansas touched down at 1:43 PM EDT. The then EF2 tornado weakened to an EF0 but then the EF0 intensified back to an EF2. Then, the second tornado touched down at 1:53 PM CDT. The first tornado then intensified to an EF4 and the second one intensified to an EF3. The second one got bigger and it, like the first tornado, intensified to an EF4. The second tornado then weakened back down to an EF1 and then dissipated at 2:36 PM EDT. The first tornado dissipated at 2:49 PM EDT after leaving 6 dead and 9 injured.

Canton, Texas

Tornado 976

The first of the many Canton family tornadoes.

The first of at least a dozen tornadoes that struck Canton, Texas touched down at 2:24 PM CDT. The tornado, an EF2 did considerable damage to well built houses until it intensified to an EF4 and then completely destroyed 7 mobile homes, killing 15. The EF4 then completely swept away a barn, concluding that the tornado reached EF5 strength. Another tornado touched down 5 miles south of Van at 2:43 PM CDT. The then EF1 intensified to an EF3. By then, the EF5 had caused catastrophic damage and then a satellite tornado touched down 10 miles northwest of Canton. The EF5 and EF0 entered the town of Canton, destroying half of the town. The EF3 by then had weakened and dissipated at 3:17 PM CDT. The EF0 then dissipated 5 miles west of Canton, while the EF5 moved northeast towards Grand Saline. The EF5 then weakened to an EF1 before dissipating at 3:55 PM CDT.

Another three tornadoes touched down between 3:48 PM CDT and 3:58 PM CDT. The first triplet grew to a mile wide EF3, while the second and third triplets grew to 2 mile wide EF4's. The second triplet then weakened to an EF2 before dissipating at 4:20 PM CDT. The first triplet stayed at EF3 strength when it hit up to 30 mobile homes, killing 43. The first triplet then weakened and dissipated at 4:29 PM CDT. The third and strongest triplet, stayed on the ground and destroying a supermarket, before dissipating at 4:42 PM CDT. Another set of triplets touched down between 4:47 PM and 5:07 PM CDT. The first triplet, an EF4, destroyed up to 5 farms and 3 mobile homes, killing 4. The second triplet wreaked havoc when it destroyed 2 neighborhoods, killing 7 with its EF3 strength. The third triplet, an EF0, only stayed on the ground for a few minutes before dissipating at 5:16 PM CDT. The first triplet then weakened to an EF3 before dissipating at 5:51 PM CDT and the second triplet dissipated at 5:54 PM CDT.


The Canton EF5 tornado.

Another tornado touched down at 5:23 PM CDT. The tornado quickly intensified to an EF5. The EF5 destroyed up to 5 neighborhoods, a Sonic, a Subway, and a Walmart. The EF5 then weakened to an EF3. Furthermore, another tornado touched down 15 miles west of Canton at 5:53 PM CDT. The EF3 then dissipated 2 miles north of Canton at 7:06 PM CDT. The new tornado that touched down rapidly intensified to an EF4. The now EF4 destroyed 4 mobile homes, killing 9. The EF4 weakened fast, dissipating at 7:32 PM CDT.

May 4

126 49 36 16 7 16 2

The strongest tornado on the 4th was the Andover EF5 with recorded wind speeds of 267 miles per hour (429 km/h). The weakest tornado was an EF0 near Stockbridge, Georgia with recorded wind speeds of 37 miles per hour.

Andover, Kansas

May 20, 2013 Moore, Oklahoma tornado

The tornado as it was approaching Andover.

The first tornado of May 4th touched down at 7:31 AM CDT. The then EF1 rapidly intensified to an EF4. The now EF4 completely demolished 3 mobile homes, killing 3. Local doppler radar recorded winds of up to 267 mph. The EF4 then intensified to EF5 status. The now EF5 completely annihilated Atwoods and an O' Reilly Auto Parts, and left catastrophic damage to both Andover High School and Andover Central High School. The EF5 tornado then entered the neighborhoods of Montana Hills, North Meadow, and Crescent Lakes.

The EF5 then traveled 5.7 miles south, tipping over an oil tanker, starting a fire. The fire killed the driver of the tanker and injured a civilian and a firefighter. The now EF3 badly damaged a barn and knocked over power lines before dissipating at 9:08 AM 15.9 miles northwest of Andover.

Olathe, Kansas


The high-end EF4 Olathe tornado 6.7 miles east of Overland Park.

Numerous cells popped up on radar and created many supercells that spawned a total of 42 tornadoes in and around the Kansas City area (19 EF0, 14 EF1, 5 EF2, 3 EF3, and 2 EF4 tornadoes.) The first tornado, an EF0, touched down at 9:29 AM CDT 12.8 miles south of Olathe. The EF0 knocked down some branches of trees and one person was injured very minor when a branch fell onto his mobile home. 18 more EF0's and 12 EF1's spawned between 9:43 AM CDT and 10:20 AM CDT.

The first large tornado touched down at 10:54 AM CDT. The then EF2 quickly intensified into an EF4 with harboring wind speeds of 180 mph. The EF4 badly damaged a house with only a couple of walls left. The tornado then tracked into a neighborhood where a 78 year old woman was killed and 12 more were injured. The now EF1 then dissipated at 12:03 PM CDT. Another 4 EF1, 3 EF2, and 3 EF3 tornadoes touched down leaving damage.

Another EF4 touched down 1.4 miles from Kansas Speedway. The tornado tracked 24 miles about 3 miles south of Olathe and killed 2 people who where taking shelter under an overpass when their car flew at them and crushed them. A satellite EF2 tornado touched down. The EF4 with maximum wind speeds of 198 mph completely leveled a barn and killed over 50 cattle and horses. The EF2 dissipated at 1:24 PM CDT followed by the EF4 at 1:39 PM CDT.

Many people have disputed the ratings as there was evidence of EF5 damage but there was no EF5 winds recorded.

Ridge, Montana


The Ridge, MT EF3.

Many tornadoes touched down in Montana, many of them around Ridge. The first tornado touched down as a small EF0 and lasted less than a minute before dissipating. Another tornado touched down at 2:04 PM CDT. The then EF1 then intensified into an EF2. The EF2 then dissipated at 2:37 PM CDT. Another 3 EF1, 6 EF0, and 7 EF2 tornadoes touched down between 2:43 PM CDT and 3:21 PM CDT.

The biggest tornado of the Ridge family touched down at 3:30 PM CDT. The then EF2 toppled over a mobile home badly injuring a 32 year old man and his wife. The EF2 intensified into an EF3. The tornado with recorded wind speeds of 151 mph, completely leveled a mobile home, and was mostly in open terrain. The EF3 dissipated at 4:18 PM CDT.

Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Ruffin McDaniel Chapman Northwest

The Gatlinburg tornado at a high-end EF4.

A couple of tornadoes spawned near Gatlinburg, Tennessee. The first three tornadoes all touched down withing five minutes of each other. The first touched down at 4:37 PM CDT. All three tornadoes were rated at EF1.

The strongest tornado of the small tornado family touched down at 5:11 PM CDT. With maximum sustained wind speeds of 205 mph, it reached EF5 intensity, but no EF5 damage was found. Therefore, the tornado was rated a high-end EF4. 2 people died and 52 people were injured during this tornado after it dissipated at 6:16 PM CDT.

Hot Springs, South Dakota


The Hot Springs EF4 near peak strength.

The cells that caused the first Moore EF5 tornado transitioned up north to North and South Dakota. At 6:38 PM CDT, multiple storms developed in and around the Hot Springs, South Dakota area which produced many tornadoes. The first tornado touched down at 7:05 PM CDT. As an EF2, the 0.8 mile wide tornado ripped roofs off of houses before dissipating at 7:23 PM CDT. 3 more tornadoes touched down, all EF0's.

The final and biggest tornado of the Hot Springs tornado family touched down at 8:07 PM CDT. The EF3 completely leveled a mobile home, killing 4. The now EF4 with maximum sustained wind speeds of 175 mph recorded by local doppler radar badly damaged 2 restaurants and 70 homes before dissipating at 8:56 PM CDT.

Xenia, Ohio


The Xenia EF5 as a high-end EF4.

The final tornadoes of the deadly outbreak happened in Xenia, Ohio, 21 miles southeast from Dayton. The first three tornadoes were on the ground for less than a minute, only causing EF0 damage. The first significant tornado touched down at 9:34 EST. The tornado quickly intensified into an EF3, causing damage to a nursing home and completely lifting a weak structure off the ground. The EF3, with recorded wind speeds of 140 mph dissipated at 10:09 PM EST.

The final five tornadoes were all rated EF3 and above. The first 2 were high-end EF3's while the first EF4 of the Xenia tornado family touched down at 10:18 PM EST. The EF4 completely leveled up to 345 mobile homes, killing 196. The EF4 dissipated 3 minutes before another EF4 touched down at 10:56 PM EST. In addition, the highest rated tornado of the family, and EF5 touched down at 11:00 PM EST. The EF4 quickly weakened before the EF5, with recorded wind speeds of 243 mph leveled a 3.7 million dollar mansion before completely lifting 4,500 more homes. Luckily, only 36 people died and 5,490 people were injured when the EF5 dissipated at 11:59 PM EST.

In all, the Xenia tornado family caused $1.4 billion in damage and left 232 people dead and 6,768 more injured.


See Also

Notable Individual Outbreaks
March 2018 Tornado OutbreakSuper Outbreak of 2018Tornado Outbreak of May 15, 2018Tornado Outbreak of May 16, 2018Tornado Outbreak sequence of May 21-26, 2018Tornado Outbreak of May 30-31, 2018June 16, 2018 Tornado OutbreakJune 21, 2018 Tornado OutbreakTornado Outbreak Sequence of July 2, 2018Tornado Outbreak Sequence of July 18-21, 2018Tornado Outbreak Sequence of August 2-4, 2018Tornado Outbreak of December 30-31, 2018Tornado Outbreak Sequence of June 13-19, 20192027 Super Outbreak2043 Super Outbreak2065 Super Outbreak