This page documents the tornadoes and tornado outbreaks of 1964, primarily in the United States. Most tornadoes form in the U.S., although some events may take place internationally. Tornado statistics for older years like this often appear significantly lower than modern years due to fewer reports or confirmed tornadoes.
|Maximum rated tornado||F5 tornado|
|Tornadoes in U.S.||704|
|Damage (U.S.)||$165.991 million (1964 USD)|
United States yearly totalEdit
There were 14 tornadoes confirmed in the US in January.
A rare F0 tornado touched down in California.
An outbreak of nine tornadoes struck Arkansas, Kentucky, and Alabama, killing 10 and injuring 10. The strongest of these tornadoes, which was rated F4, swept multiple houses off of their foundations south of Harpersville, Alabama. This tornado was responsible for the 10 deaths that occurred during this outbreak.
There were 2 tornadoes confirmed in the US in February.
There were 36 tornadoes confirmed in the US in March.
Just 17 days after the previous one, another outbreak of eight tornadoes hit the same general area, injuring 36.
157 tornadoes were confirmed in the U.S. in April.
A tornado outbreak sequence spawned 33 tornadoes from the Great Plains to the Southeastern United States. The strongest and worst event was an F5 tornado that moved through Wichita Falls, Texas. It was the first tornado to ever be captured on live television. Seven people were killed and 111 others were injured. Overall, the outbreak killed seven people and injured 119. It would be the first of two violent tornadoes to hit Wichita Falls, with the other—an F4 tornado that killed 42—occurring on April 10, 1979.
A squall line moving through Harris County, Texas spawned an F2 tornado that killed one person and injured two more when a trailer home was blown over near Aldine. The squall line also generated high winds that damaged several hundred homes and buildings and knocking down trees and power poles in the northern and eastern parts of the county. Winds of 92 mph were measured at the Shell Oil refinery in Deer Park. The 81-foot wide tornado was on the ground for 22 miles and lifted near Deer Park.
134 tornadoes were confirmed in the U.S. in May.
A massive tornado outbreak sequence spawned 73 tornadoes from Texas to Michigan. On May 5, the second F5 tornado of the year carved a 79.7 mile path through Adams, Clay, Hamilton, York, Polk, and Antelope Counties in Nebraska, killing four people and injuring 50 others. On May 8, An F4 tornado struck suburban areas of metropolitan Detroit in Macomb County, Michigan, before continuing into Lambton County in Ontario, killing 11 people and injuring 224 others. In all, along with the 15 fatalities, 383 others were injured.
An F3 tornado killed one and injured eight in New Mexico, the first tornado to officially cause fatalities in the state. Nine other weak tornadoes also touched down in Wyoming, Texas, and Wisconsin with no casualties.
There were 137 tornadoes confirmed in the US in June.
There were 63 tornadoes confirmed in the US in July.
There were 79 tornadoes confirmed in the US in August.
August 24–31 (Elsewhere)Edit
As Hurricane Cleo approached and hit the Southeast, 26 other tornadoes touched down in an unrelated outbreak sequence that struck the Great Plains, Southwest, and Midwest. On August 27, an F2 tornado struck the San Xavier Mission Village, Arizona west of Tucson in Pima County, destroying four homes, killing two people, and injuring nine others. This was the first official killer tornado ever recorded in Arizona, as well as the deadliest in ever recorded the state. On August 29, a localized, but destructive outbreak of six tornadoes hit Iowa and North Dakota with a 100 yard wide F4 tornado injuring two as it traveled 15.8 miles through Kossuth County, Iowa. Overall, the outbreak sequence killed two and injured 12.
August 27–31 (Hurricane Cleo)Edit
Hurricane Cleo fueled an outbreak of 12 tornadoes as it moved through the Southeast United States. The strongest tornado was a 50 yard wide F3 tornado that tore a 21.9 mile path through Scotland and Richmond County, North Carolina, injuring 15. A total of 21 people were injured from the tornadoes.
There were 25 tornadoes confirmed in the US in September.
September 12–13 (Hurricane Dora)Edit
There were 22 tornadoes confirmed in the U.S. in October.
October 3–4 (Hurricane Hilda)Edit
A deadly and damaging outbreak of 12 tornadoes struck Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and North Carolina due to the passage of Hurricane Hilda. In Louisiana, at least six tornadoes and two waterspouts were reported. A violent F4 tornado near Larose killed 22 people, injured 165 others, and destroyed 35 homes, despite being on the ground for only 1–1.5 mi (1.6–2.4 km). Automobiles in the path of the twister were also damaged. Debris picked up by the tornado was found 16 mi (26 km) away in Grand Coteau, Louisiana. It is only one of two violent tornadoes ever spawned by a hurricane with the other coming in 1961. No other tornado in the state resulted in deaths, though multiple twisters in the New Orleans metropolitan area caused extensive damage to several automobiles and buildings, knocked down power lines, which created localized power, and injured five people. In Mississippi, an F2 tornado struck areas in Pearl River County, destroying a home, two barns, and a pumping station. In Alabama, at least three tornadoes occurred across six counties, with one injuring two people after damaging five homes, a hospital, and a plant. Several more tornadoes were reported in six counties of North Carolina, with two F2 tornadoes being confirmed. In all, 22 people were killed and 172 others were injured.
October 14 (Hurricane Isbell)Edit
There were 17 tornadoes confirmed in the US in November.
A rare F1 tornado touched down in California.
There were 18 tornadoes confirmed in the US in December.
- List of tornado outbreaks
- List of F5 and EF5 tornadoes
- List of North American tornadoes and tornado outbreaks
- List of 21st-century Canadian tornadoes and tornado outbreaks
- List of European tornadoes and tornado outbreaks
- List of tornadoes and tornado outbreaks in Asia
- List of Southern Hemisphere tornadoes and tornado outbreaks
- List of tornadoes striking downtown areas
- List of tornadoes with confirmed satellite tornadoes
- Tornado intensity
- "1964 Tornadoes". Tornado Archive.
- "Severe Weather Database Files (1950-2021)". Storm Prediction Center. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. July 11, 2022. Retrieved November 12, 2022.
- US Department of Commerce, NOAA. "Harpersville Tornado 1/24/1964". www.weather.gov. Retrieved 2020-10-03.
- "April 1964 Tornado Summary". National Climatic Data Center. Tornado History Project. 2014. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
- "May 1964 Tornado Summary". National Climatic Data Center. Tornado History Project. 2014. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
- "Detroit Metro Tornado Summary". National Climatic Data Center. Tornado History Project. 2014. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
- "August 1964 Tornado Summary". National Climatic Data Center. Tornado History Project. 2014. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
- "Historical Arizona Storms of the 20th Century". National Weather Service. NWS Phoenix. Retrieved 29 June 2020.
- "September 1964 Tornado Summary". National Climatic Data Center. Tornado History Project. 2014. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
- "October 1964 Tornado Summary". National Climatic Data Center. Tornado History Project. 2014. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
- Hodges, Luther H.; White, Robert M. (October 1964). "October 1964" (PDF). Storm Data. Asheville, North Carolina: United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Climatic Data Center. 6 (10). Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 June 2014. Retrieved 8 June 2014.
- "Hurricane Hilda Churns North Towards Louisiana". The Morning Record. Vol. 97, no. 235. Wallingford, Connecticut. Associated Press. October 3, 1964. pp. 1, 14. Retrieved 8 June 2014.