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Two waves of tornadoes in three days cause deaths and damage in the United States

Two waves of tornadoes in three days cause deaths and damage in the United States

Tornadoes wreak havoc and cause deaths from Texas to Iowa | Airbeli Airport

The United States is facing several consecutive days of severe weather, as new tornadoes tore through the Central Plains over the weekend, devastating entire communities from Texas to Iowa. The authorities confirmed that at least five people were killed as a result of the hurricanes. Thousands of people lost their homes, which turned into rubble.

More than 50 tornadoes ranging from EF-0 to EF-3 have been confirmed, and that number may continue to rise as survey teams from the US National Weather Service (NWS) remain in the field, assessing the extent of damage for tornado classification. Hurricane intensity.

Friday was the most active day for tornadoes in 2024, with the NWS reporting that it received 86 tornado reports β€” the most in a single day since March 31, 2023, when 161 reports were reported in Iowa and Nebraska on Friday, two rare warnings issued. Hurricane emergency. These tornadoes caused catastrophic damage in cities including Elkhorn, Nebraska, and Minden, Iowa, and specialized response teams were brought in to help assess the damage.

Two powerful waves of severe weather and superstorms left multiple paths of destruction across the South and Plains between Friday and yesterday. The worst occurred in eastern Nebraska and western Iowa on Friday and from northwest Texas to southwest Missouri on Saturday.

As of Sunday night, at least four tornado-related deaths had been reported, including one in Iowa and three in Oklahoma. The National Weather Service offices in Omaha (Nebraska) and Norman (Oklahoma) set their own records for the highest number of tornado warnings issued in a single day, with 42 and 59 warnings, respectively.

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Preliminary hurricane intensity assessments for Nebraska and Iowa are expected early this week. There is a possibility that it was one or more EF-4s with a scale of up to 5. Several private aircraft were damaged or destroyed at Omaha's main airport, Eppley Airport, during the tornado.

After filtering out the reports, the NOAA/NWS Storm Prediction Center counted a preliminary total of 86 tornadoes from Friday through Saturday morning, with another 39 reports from Saturday afternoon until just after midnight. These waves were separated by about 14 tornado-free hours, which by some strict definitions might qualify the event as two waves of tornadoes instead of one, explains meteorologist Bob Henson.

Weather radar recorded wind speeds of 220 mph (360 km/h) near Harlan, Iowa, in the tornado that passed through the city of Minden. Damage that qualifies for an EF5 rating β€” which was last applied to a tornado in Moore, Oklahoma, on May 20, 2013 β€” indicates surface winds of at least 180 mph. However, Wheels' Doppler radar measurements were collected at an altitude near 300 metres, where winds are less affected by surface friction and can be much stronger than near ground level. The standard height for routine wind measurements is 10 metres.

In downtown Sulfur, about 75 miles southeast of Oklahoma City, Gov. Kevin Stitt told reporters he hadn't seen anything like it since he took office in January 2019. “You can't believe the devastation,” he said. β€œIt seems like every downtown business has been destroyed.”

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One Sulfur woman died and about 30 people were injured, Stitt said. Twenty of the injured were taken to hospital and released. Officials are still evaluating those numbers, which Stitt said could change. At least two people were confirmed dead in Holdenville, about 70 miles southeast of Oklahoma City.

Tornadoes are intense and destructive weather phenomena characterized by intensely rotating air columns extending from the base of the storm to the Earth's surface. These violent vortexes are known for their destructive power, capable of causing massive destruction within seconds to minutes.

The Fujita scale, often used to rate the intensity of tornadoes, ranges from F0 to F5, with F5 being the strongest. Tornadoes often form in areas where masses of warm, moist air meet masses of cold, dry air, creating ideal conditions for these eddies to develop.

Tornadoes occur in many parts of the world, including Australia, Europe, Africa, Asia, and South America, and even New Zealand records about 20 tornadoes per year. Two of the highest tornado concentrations outside the United States are in mid-latitude South America and Bangladesh.

About 1,200 tornadoes hit the United States annually. Because official hurricane records only go back to 1950, the actual average number of hurricanes that occur each year is unknown. Furthermore, the methods of detecting and reporting tornadoes have changed a lot in recent decades, meaning that statistics now take into account tornadoes that in the past were not included in accounting. Brazil does not have a strong database on these events in the country throughout history, and projects to verify and account for the events are still in their infancy.

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