This is the second part of five in my ranking of the top 25 tornadoes of the EF scale era.
20. Washington, IL – November 17, 2013 (EF4 rating) Path 46.2 miles; Maximum Width .5 miles; 3 Fatalities; 125 Injuries
A high risk day led to a major outbreak of 73 tornadoes across Illinois, Indiana and Ohio (primarily) and eight fatalities on this late fall Sunday. The most impressive of the tornadoes was an EF4 (high end, rated at 190mph max winds) that did heavy damage in the town of Washington, Illinois, killing three and causing $935 million in damage.
19. Raleigh-Rose Hill-Enterprise-Uniontown, MS-AL – April 27, 2011 (EF4 rating) Path 122 miles; Maximum Width .6 miles; 7 Fatalities; 17 Injuries
With so many high-end tornadoes on April 27, 2011, several other very impressive tornadoes are largely unknown or forgotten – one of those is this tornado that traveled an amazing 122 miles across two states for nearly three hours – in just about any other tornado outbreak this would be the most talked-about tornado – but for the 2011 Super Outbreak it’s down the list a bit. One of the more interesting notes of this tornado is it is the first tornado ever recorded in 3D by Sean Casey (TIV) as it crossed I-59 near Enterprise, Mississippi (not the video below). A path that crossed relatively minimal population kept this from being a more devastating tornado.
18. New Pekin-Henryville, IN – March 2, 2012 (EF4 rating) Path 49 miles, Maximum Width .5 miles; 11 Fatalities; Injuries N/A
One of the largest tornado outbreaks of this time period was the March 2-3, 2012 outbreak which saw 70 tornadoes, hitting Indiana and Kentucky particularly hard. An outbreak of tornadoes on February 29 (Leap Day) killed 15 people, including eight by an EF4 tornado in Harrisburg, Illinois, then this event just two days later was rated as a high risk, with 30% probability of strong tornadoes in a large area. Tornadoes early in the day hit parts of Alabama that were had been devastated less than a year earlier on April 27, 2011. Tornado activity in the afternoon focused on Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio. Hardest hit were the communities of New Pekin and Henryville, Indiana. An entire family of five was killed near New Pekin when their mobile home was thrown. The tornado then struck Henryville as school was dismissing – most students had already left the area, but some stayed behind at the school and rode out the storm. The school was destroyed, but the students survived without major injuries. School busses were thrown, one into the wall of a neighboring restaurant. Marysville, Indiana was also hit hard before the tornado moved into Kentucky. Later that day a high-end EF3 tornado traveled 86 miles in Kentucky (most notably near West Liberty), killing ten additional people. In all, this outbreak produced 70 tornadoes and killed 41.
17. Cordova-Blountsville, AL – April 27, 2011 (EF4 rating) Path 127.8 miles; Maximum Width .8 miles; 13 Fatalities; 54 Injuries
Another monster tornado from April 27, 2011 that hasn’t garnered much attention because it was “only” an EF4… 2nd longest tornado path of the day, a staggering 127 miles – well over two hours on the ground. Parts of Cordova had been damaged earlier in the morning round of storms by an EF3 rated tornado, this tornado did considerably more damage – destroying much of the historic downtown district. On the ground at roughly the same time as the Tuscaloosa tornado it received far less attention even as it was happening.
16. Ringgold-Apison, GA,TN – April 27, 2011 (EF4 rating) Path 48 miles; Maximum Width .5 miles; 20 Fatalities; 335 Injuries
Another high-end, violent tornado from April 27th was this early evening tornado that touched down in Catoosa County, GA, heavily damaging the town of Ringgold (killing eight) before crossing into Tennessee (Hamilton County), hitting the town of Apison hard, at high-end EF4 strength according to NWS surveys (and killing eight more). It then moved into Bradley, Polk and McMinn counties, killing a total of 12 people in Tennessee. The Cherokee Valley Road (road running at far right of picture below) video is particularly interesting at the 1:45 – 3:00 mark as it passes thru the area in the picture, travelling from bottom to top.
*** Sources include Storm Prediction Center (www.spc.noaa.gov), Wikipedia (Mrluckypants), YouTube (kris Lancaster), YouTube (Storm Focus), YouTube (Amber AMGraphics), YouTube (Taylor Campbell), YouTube (Bryan Davis), NWS Jackson, wbrc.com, Stormtrack.org