Tornado outbreak of mid-October 2007
The tornado outbreak of mid-October 2007 was a widespread tornado outbreak that took place across much of the eastern half of North America starting on October 17, 2007 and continuing into the early hours of October 19. The outbreak was also responsible for five deaths; three in Michigan and two in Missouri, plus many injuries (including some from non-tornadic events). At least 64 tornadoes were confirmed including 16 on October 17 across six states including Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Missouri with wind damage reported in Oklahoma, Kansas, Illinois, Iowa, Arkansas and Mississippi. On October 18, at least 48 tornadoes were confirmed across eight states including Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana and Michigan, plus widespread straight line wind damage. Until 2010, this event held the record for largest tornado outbreak ever recorded in the month of October according to NOAA.
EF3 damage in Nappanee, Indiana on October 18, 2007
|Duration||October 17–19, 2007|
|Max rating1||EF3 tornado|
|Duration of tornado outbreak2||~40 hours|
|Damage||$54.2 million (2007 USD)|
|Areas affected||Central and Southern United States|
|1Most severe tornado damage; see Enhanced Fujita scale2Time from first tornado to last tornado|
A deep low pressure system (with a pressure of 977 mbar at its peak) moved across the Pacific Coast on October 15 and then crossed the Rockies during the following day and touched out some moist air from the Gulf of Mexico, a major source for storm development and intensification. Not part of the main outbreak, 3 tornadoes were reported, during the overnight hours of October 16 towards October 17, across Randall County, Texas south of Amarillo on October 16 with 1 of them confirmed as a high EF1; that tornado caused damage to trees, fences, power poles, steel pipes, trailers, and barns.
The next day, a dry line, which separates the drier air from the more moist and humid air, formed ahead of the cold front across the Texas and Oklahoma Panhandles and tracked eastward. The high humidity levels with dew points in the 70s°F (low 20s°C), temperatures that in many areas were near 80 °F (27 °C), strong wind shear, and the presence of the dry line helped develop the instability to produce severe thunderstorms across both the Midwest and the Southern Plains on October 17.
A moderate risk for severe weather was issued by the Storm Prediction Center two days prior to the event. The storm then moved across the most of the Midwest on October 18, where a moderate risk was in effect also for two days for most of Illinois, Indiana, and parts of Kentucky; however, the moderate risk was revised further to the south and the east to include western Ohio, western Tennessee, southeastern Missouri, northeastern Arkansas, and a larger portion of Kentucky. Both Michigan and Wisconsin were no longer under a moderate risk. A slight risk of severe weather was forecast for a large area from beyond the Canada–US border to the Florida Panhandle and the Mobile Bay area. Dew points above 70 °F (21 °C) were reported well into the Ohio Valley, and those over 60 °F (16 °C) were reported as far north as northern Ontario.
The outbreak was expected to continue into October 19 east of the Appalachian Mountains, but extensive cloud cover prevented any significant severe storms from developing; even though, several wind reports were reported in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Massachusetts. The storm then moved out into the Atlantic Ocean on October 20.
The first severe thunderstorms developed during the early morning of October 17 across much of northern and eastern Texas and parts of Oklahoma and Kansas with only one reported tornado in east Texas. Several severe thunderstorms then later developed across eastern Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, western Mississippi, eastern Kansas, Missouri and parts of Nebraska, Iowa, Kentucky, Illinois and Tennessee. Twelve additional tornadoes were reported in Missouri and Louisiana during the late afternoon and early evening with damage reported in Lawrence and Greene counties in Missouri. One of the tornadoes located near Verona destroyed several barns and homes but did not cause any injuries and was later confirmed as an EF2. The storms persisted throughout the night and an additional tornado killed 2 people inside a mobile home in Greene County, Missouri near Paris.
On October 18, several thunderstorms already developed during the morning hours and continued to intensify during the afternoon. Just after 11:00 am EDT, one tornado in downtown Pensacola, Florida caused some extensive damage to the roof of a Baptist church as well as portions of Cordova Mall but there were no reported injuries at the Church and daycare center. During the early evenings severe weather affected the Louisville, Kentucky Metro area in which tree damage and power outage were reported throughout the area and a possible tornado at around 7:00 pm EDT near the Crescent Hill area which was later confirmed as a brief EF0. Still in the region, one tree fell over a passing car but the motorist escaped injuries although he was trapped for several minutes inside. The Louisville power authority, the LG&E reported as much as 2,500 homes without power mostly in St. Matthews and Crescent Hill areas. More storms rolled through much of the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys during the second half of the evening and overnight with more storms in Michigan.
Areas the hardest hit were along and near the Ohio River in western Kentucky as well as central and northern Indiana in Nappanee where injuries were reported as well as significant damage, and in Central Michigan. Three people were killed overall on October 18: one in Kalkaska County, Michigan and two in Locke Township, near Williamston, Michigan. In addition to the tornadoes, storm straight line damaging wind measured up to 80 mph (130 km/h) were recorded across several of the regions hit by the severe weather, causing extensive tree and power line with isolated reports of structural damage.
In Michigan, a tornado in Tuscola near Flint threw a one-year-old baby 40 feet (12 m) away from its location along with the crib and was later found amongst a pile of rubble under a mattress. His parents told reporters that the mattress saved the toddler's life and he suffered few to no injuries. According to the National Weather Service in Detroit, tornadoes this late in the year in Michigan are rare. The last significant October tornado event was on October 24, 2001, when three tornadoes hit southeastern Lower Michigan, out of a total of nine in the state that day. Including the 2001 tornadoes, only seven October tornadoes had been recorded in the NWS Detroit county warning area prior to the 2007 outbreak. By comparison, NWS Detroit had confirmed five tornadoes in its coverage area from this outbreak. It was also the largest October outbreak over western Kentucky and southern Indiana as 15 tornadoes were confirmed on October 18. Previous to this outbreak, only 19 tornadoes had been recorded in that same region during the history of October prior to this event. The Owensboro tornado, which was rated an EF3 was also the strongest ever in that month over the same region since records were kept in 1950 although an unofficial F3 took place in Posey County, Indiana on October 16, 1928.
October 17 eventEdit
|List of reported tornadoes - Wednesday, October 17, 2007|
|EF1||W of Ogg||Randall||0516||11 miles
|Tornado caused damage to several barns, fencing, a trailer, a homestead and power poles. Two large diesel tanks were also moved.|
|EF0||SW of Buna||Jasper||1532||1 miles
|Brief tornado downed a few trees.|
|EF0||W of Centerview||Johnson||2105||unknown||Brief tornado caused no damage.|
|EF2||N of Verona||Lawrence||2250||11 miles
|Intermittent damage path. Nine houses were damaged or destroyed, along with a lumber mill and several barns.|
|EF1||N of Cave Springs||Greene||2335||3 miles
|Two houses and a barn were damaged.|
|EF0||S of Lebanon||Laclede||0435||unknown||Tornado damaged trees and telephone poles and moved a mobile home off of its foundation.|
|EF0||E of Hatton||Callaway||0455||1 miles
|A horse stable, a double wide mobile home, a large garage, and several trees were damaged.|
|EF0||S of Madison||Monroe||0500||4 miles
|Two machine sheds were damaged as the tornado tracked across mostly farmland. Corn was flattened in farm fields and trees were damaged as well.|
|EF2||SE of Granville||Monroe||0505||4 miles
|2 deaths - High-end EF2 obliterated a mobile home, barn, and a machine shed. The frame of the mobile home was found 1/3 of a mile away, and the two occupants were thrown hundreds of yards into a field and killed. Pieces of debris from the mobile home, barn, and shed were found up to 4 miles away.|
|EF0||W of North Fork||Monroe||0507||2 miles
|Trees and a machine shed were damaged.|
|EF0||NE of Fort Tawson||Choctaw||2214||unknown||Brief tornado remained over open country and caused no damage.|
|EF1||N of Franklinton||Washington||2245||unknown||Tornado moved a car 15 feet, uprooted trees, and caused major roof damage to a mobile home.|
|EF1||Franklinton||Washington||2255||unknown||Tornado struck the town of Franklinton directly, where three businesses sustained major roof damage and had windows blown out.|
|EF1||W of Star City||Lincoln||2302||5.4 miles
|Six mobile homes were damaged or destroyed and four houses sustained minor damage. Widespread tree and power line damage occurred. The worst of the damage occurred near the Feenyville community.|
|EF1||NE of Society Hill||Jefferson Davis||0030||0.33 mile
|A storage building was destroyed while another had its roof torn off. An addition to a house had a portion of the roof blown off, and several trees were downed.|
|EF1||N of Hattiesburg||Forrest||0110||1.5 miles
|Tornado began at Exit 69 on I-59, where a car was blown off the roadway, injuring the occupant. A garage had its roof blown off and a house sustained minor roof damage. Additionally, two metal buildings had their metal doors torn off.|
|Several trees were downed and limbs were snapped in Tolarville.|
|Sources: Storm reports of October 17, 2007 NWS Springfield, NWS St. Louis, NWS Little Rock, NWS Jackson MS, NOAA Storm Data|
October 18 eventEdit
|List of reported tornadoes - Thursday, October 18, 2007|
|EF1||W of Vancleave||Jackson||1045||1.8 miles
|Tornado destroyed one mobile home and heavily damaged at least ten others. The tornado also destroyed several outbuildings, snapped trees, and knocked down power lines.|
|Brief tornado caused minor damage to a building at the Starkville Country Club. Two trees were also snapped.|
|EF0||E of Starkville||Oktibbeha||1804||unknown||Tornado snapped a few trees.|
|EF1||N of De Kalb||Kemper, Noxubee||1913||3 miles
|Damage along the path was limited to pine trees being knocked down.|
|Large tornado first touched down near the Pensacola Naval Station and tracked through parts of downtown Pensacola. Boats near the beginning of the path were flipped, and multiple homes were damaged, some heavily. A church lost part of its roof, bleachers were flipped at a baseball field, and extensive tree and power line damage occurred. 30 cars in a Target parking lot were damaged, with some totaled. An Office Depot sustained roof damage, and the Cordova Mall sustained damage to its skylights, allowing water to leak into the building. 86 buildings were damaged by the tornado and four people were injured.|
|EF0||NW of Vernon||Lamar||1815||unknown||Brief tornado touchdown was photographed by local police. The tornado did not cause any damage.|
|EF0||SW of Haleyville||Marion||1951||0.06 mile
|A farmhouse was damaged, and tree and power line damage occurred.|
|EF1||S of Mount Hope||Lawrence||2005||0.15 mile
|Tornado moved through the Bankhead National Forest, damaging trees.|
|EF1||W of Tower||Cheboygan||2125||10 miles
|Highly visible tornado was photographed and caught on video as it crossed Black Lake. A barn was destroyed and trees were downed.|
|EF2||NE of Long Rapids||Alpena||2225||4 miles
|Three homes suffered roof and siding damage, and three barns were destroyed or heavily damaged. A garage and a shed were also destroyed, and there was substantial tree damage along the path.|
|EF2||SW of Kalkaska||Kalkaska||2335||5 miles
|1 death - Multiple homes were damaged along the path, some severely. A large metal warehouse building was damaged, and nearby mobile home was destroyed, resulting in a fatality. Several hangars and small planes were damaged at the Kalkaska County Airport, and sheet metal from the hangars was deposited near the Kalkaska Middle School. Large trees were also uprooted and one other person was injured.|
|EF2||E of Luzerne||Oscoda||0012||14 miles
|Large wedge tornado moved through densely forested areas. Tens of thousands of trees were snapped or uprooted, and many power lines were downed. About 16 structures were damaged, mostly outbuildings or cabins. Three of the cabins were completely destroyed.|
|EF1||E of Comins||Oscoda, Alcona||0042||3 miles
|Considerable tree damage occurred, outbuildings were damaged, and swirl marks were left in farm fields.|
|EF2||N of Hubbard Lake||Alpena||0100||0.25 mile
|A house had much of its second story ripped off, and two barns and a mobile home were destroyed. Cows and chickens in the area were killed, and extensive tree damage occurred as well.|
|EF2||NE of Mason to SE of Perry||Ingham, Shiawassee||0228||19 miles
|2 deaths - Tornado struck the south side of Williamston, where approximately 100 homes were damaged. Just outside town, two people were killed when a modular home was thrown into a pond. Near Perry, four barns and three houses received damage. One house had windows blown out, a farm house had a section of roof taken off, and a modular home had its entire roof ripped off. One other person was injured.|
|EF1||SSW of Millington||Tuscola||0515||2 miles
|High-end EF1 completely destroyed a frail modular home. A 14-month-old baby sleeping in a crib inside this home received only minor cuts and bruises after being tossed 25 feet and buried under about 4 feet of beams, rafters, and other debris. A home near the modular home was damaged by flying debris, and a third home lost part of its roof.|
|EF0||E of Clio||Genesee||0516||2.5 miles
|Trees were snapped and uprooted, a home sustained shingle damage, and a barn lost part of its metal roof.|
|EF1||W of Deford||Tuscola||0545||3 miles
|A garage was destroyed, several houses sustained roof damage, and a fifth-wheel camper was tossed into a pond on top a truck that had already been tossed into the pond. A man sleeping in the fifth-wheel received no injuries. Numerous trees were also snapped off or uprooted.|
|EF1||W of Port Hope||Huron||0630||1 mile
|Farm machinery was lifted and displaced, and a farm shed was moved about 120 feet off of its foundation. Also, the walls of a large barn were lifted 6 to 8 feet from the foundation.|
|EF0||NE of West Salem||Edwards||2215||unknown||Brief tornado remained over open country and caused no damage.|
|EF1||NE of Owensboro||Daviess||2307||2 miles
|A few structures were damaged and numerous trees were downed along the path.|
|EF0||Louisville||Jefferson||2310||unknown||Tornado touched down at a Kroger store in the Crescent Hill neighborhood. Windows were blown out of the grocery store, a shopping cart corral was blown into a car, and a large power pole was blown down.|
|EF2||S of Lewisport||Daviess, Hancock||2310||13.2 miles
|Major tree and structural damage occurred, especially near Spice Knob and Scythia. Further along the path, a mobile home was destroyed and several barns were leveled before the tornado dissipated.|
|EF0||SW of Gatewood||Daviess||2315||1 miles
|Several trees were damaged by this brief tornado.|
|EF2||NE of Dixon to Sebree||Webster||0009||10.4 miles
|Major damage occurred in the Sebree area. Three homes were destroyed and 10 others were damaged. A youth rehabilitation center sustained major damage. One mobile home was obliterated and scattered across a field, injuring all four occupants. The metal frame of the mobile home was thrown 300 feet. Another injury occurred as a vehicle was picked up and thrown by the tornado, ejecting the occupant.|
|EF1||E of Creswell||Caldwell||0020||unknown||Trees were uprooted and snapped.|
|EF2||S of Dawson Springs||Caldwell||0025||unknown||Seven homes sustained major damage, some of which had roofs torn off. Many trees were snapped and uprooted, and several small barns were destroyed.|
|EF2||W of Beech Springs to SW of Owensboro||McLean, Daviess||0032||17.5 miles
|Near Beech Springs, numerous barns and outbuildings were destroyed, a house sustained major damage, and four other homes sustained minor damage. A pontoon boat was moved up to 20 feet from where it originated, and a garage and several vehicles were destroyed. Near Owensboro, additional homes and outbuildings sustained major damage, with a few destroyed. Extensive tree and power line damage occurred along the path, and four people were injured when a mobile home was completely destroyed.|
|EF2||NW of Macedonia||Christian||0040||2 miles
|Tornado flattened a swath of large trees in the Pennyrile State Forest. Three mobile homes were damaged, including one that was blown down a hill and smashed, injuring the occupant. A barn was destroyed as well.|
|EF2||SW of St. Charles||Hopkins||0050||1.5 miles
|Numerous trees were downed and three mobile homes were destroyed, one of which had its metal frame bent. Debris from the mobile homes was scattered hundreds of yards away. Barns were damaged, and a frame home sustained major roof, siding, and porch damage. One person was injured.|
|Tornado caused damage to several buildings in town. Two masonry buildings had their wooden roofs blown off, a gas station canopy was damaged, and a tree fell onto a house. Trees were sheared off and uprooted throughout the town.|
|EF1||N of Canton||Trigg||0102||2.5 miles
|Many large trees and tree limbs were downed, including some that damaged a dock, a garage, and a house, A garage had tin roofing peeled back, and a house had part of its roof blown off. Two cabins at Lake Barkley State Resort Park sustained roof damage. The state park was closed for most of the following day, mostly due to trees and power lines blocking access to the park.|
|EF1||NW of Hamlin||Calloway||0107||7.4 miles
|Hundreds of trees were snapped and uprooted. One home received major roof damage, primarily from falling trees.|
|Strong tornado struck downtown Owensboro for the second time since 2000. 150 homes were damaged in Owensboro, with several destroyed. Two historic churches in downtown Owensboro sustained major damage, including one that had its steeple collapse through the roof into the sanctuary. A motel sustained major damage and had most of its roof torn off. Almost every building at Brescia University sustained damage, mostly to the roofs and windows. A delivery truck was overturned, and streets in the downtown area were littered with debris from collapsed roofs and warehouses. Several large brick tobacco warehouses in downtown Owensboro were completely destroyed. Extensive tree and power line damage occurred as well. 8 people were injured.|
|EF0||SW of Linton||Trigg||0123||1 mile
|Trees were uprooted in the Land Between the Lakes area.|
|EF2||S of Cadiz||Trigg||0132||10.5 miles
|Two barns and a large garage were destroyed, with debris scattered up to 3/4 of a mile away and projectiles embedded into the ground. Four power poles were snapped. Numerous trees were snapped and uprooted, some of which had metal debris stuck in them.|
|A church in Rosetta was destroyed, and a nearby house had much of its roof torn off. Two large outbuildings were destroyed and a trailer was wrapped around a tree. A pickup truck was thrown 75 feet and flipped over, and a 4,500-pound tractor was shifted 7 feet from where it sat. Numerous trees along the path were snapped and uprooted.|
|EF1||Fort Knox||Meade||0250||2.5 miles
|The Rock Inn sustained roof damage, and a service station canopy was knocked over. The tornado also uprooted large trees along the damage path.|
|EF1||E of Hubers||Bullitt||0320||2 miles
|Two outbuildings were damaged and numerous trees were downed at the beginning of the path. A garage was destroyed and several homes sustained minor damage further along the path.|
|One mobile home was rolled over and several houses lost shingles. Extensive tree and power pole damage occurred in town, and outbuildings were destroyed.|
|EF1||NE of Cannelton||Perry||2334||5 miles
|Intermittent tornado caused relatively minor damage along its path.|
|EF0||N of Ambia||Benton||0035||unknown||Brief touchdown in an open field caused no damage.|
|EF1||SE of St. Marks||Dubois||0127||2 miles
|About 100 trees were snapped or uprooted, a barn was damaged, and a door was ripped off of a house.|
|EF3||SW of Vesta||Clark||0203||4.8 miles
|10 homes were damaged by this tornado, four heavily, one of which was swept away with only its basement left. The home that was swept away was bolted to its foundation, though it was determined that the severity of the destruction at that residence was the result of two nearby barns, a stable, and a silo being blown away and slammed into the house, as context was not indicative of a violent tornado. Four vehicles were heavily damaged or destroyed, and corn and soybean fields were scoured by the tornado.|
|EF3||W of Bourbon to NE of Nappanee||Marshall, Kosciusko, Elkhart||0218||20 miles
|Tornado began west of Bourbon and passed north of town. Numerous trees were sheared off and uprooted, grain silos were damaged, and power poles were broken in that area. Homes near Bourbon sustained up to high-end EF1 damage, mobile homes were flipped, a garage was reduced to a bare slab, and a trampoline and a highway sign were mangled. Past Bourbon, the tornado strengthened and some areas of EF2 damage were noted. Several Amish homes and barns sustained major damage in this area, and one frail home lost its roof and exterior walls. The tornado then entered Nappanee as a high-end EF2, partially destroying a church and tearing the roofs and second stories from several homes. Many new RVs and mobile homes were destroyed at a distribution plant, and a nearby factory was damaged. The tornado reached high-end EF3 strength in the eastern part of town, where another RV plant was flattened, a metal-frame warehouse building was heavily damaged, and a gas station was destroyed. A Taco Bell and a Dairy Queen sustained major damage in this area, along with several homes in a nearby subdivision, one of which only had interior walls left. The tornado then exited town and caused EF1 to EF2 damage to several homes and farms before dissipating. A total of 591 buildings (including at least 368 homes and 81 businesses) were damaged, of which at least 98 were destroyed across the three counties. A few minor injuries occurred.|
|EF1||W of Model||Stewart||0118||1 miles
|Numerous trees were snapped and uprooted.|
|Sources: Storm reports of October 18, 2007, NWS Michigan Offices (Combined report), NWS Northern Indiana summary, NWS Louisville summary, NWS Central Illinois summary, NWS Chicago summary, NWS Paducah storm reports, NWS Paducah summary, NWS Tulsa summary, NOAA Storm Data|
In addition to the tornadoes, widespread straight-line wind damage took place across much of the affected region, particularly on the night of October 17 as a result of a derecho that moved across the southern Great Plains into the Ozarks. Winds were reported as high as 100 mph (160 km/h) as a result of the bow echo that moved across the region. Tulsa was hard hit, with at least 55 people injured (one critically) due to wind damage at the Oktoberfest event. Many mobile homes were destroyed, and widespread power outages were reported in the region including in Rogers County near Oologah where five people where injured.
In Kansas, a bow echo caused some localized significant damage in and around the Wichita Metropolitan Area with the most significant damage at the International Cold Storage located in the Andover area where the peak winds were measured. Overall, over 400 wind reports in the US alone, were reported on both October 17 and 18 across the Midwest, Gulf Coast and Great Lakes with several reports of damage but there were no direct non-tornadic fatalities. In Chicago, an eleven-year-old boy was struck and injured by lightning while another person was injured by broken glass when high winds broke windows of a lobby hall of a condominium.
In addition, the Gulf Coast region, particularly the Florida Panhandle, received torrential rain due to continuous thunderstorms ahead of the cold front. Rainfall amounts over 12 inches (300 mm) were common (with amounts as high as 22 inches (560 mm) were reported in Gulf Breeze, Florida), although only minor flooding was reported including roads and some houses flooded.
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