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Midwest to get a break from tornadoes that ravaged communities in May, forecasters say

Researchers tracked this storm near Tipton, Kansas, on May 28, 2019. TORUS researchers have been gathering data from storms during one of the most active stretches for tornadoes in years.
Researchers tracked this storm near Tipton, Kansas, on May 28, 2019. TORUS researchers have been gathering data from storms during one of the most active stretches for tornadoes in years. Courtesy photo

A “dramatically lower” number of tornadoes will touch down in June and July after twisters ravaged the Midwest in May, AccuWeather forecasters say.

There were 555 tornadoes confirmed in May, including 77 on Memorial Day, according to the National Weather Service.

Among them was a mile-wide tornado that ripped through Douglas County, Kansas, and traveled 31 miles before lifting in Leavenworth County.

Brian LaBonte and Lanae LaBonte describe damage done to their family member's home during Tuesday's tornado.

Three people died in Golden City, Missouri, after a tornado tore through the small town, and hours later another caused damage in Jefferson City.

May included a streak of a dozen days with at least eight tornadoes, The New York Times reported.

“We are flirting in uncharted territory,” Patrick Marsh, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Norman, Oklahoma, told The New York Times last month.

Midwesterners could soon get a reprieve.

AccuWeather predicts about 24 percent fewer tornadoes than normal in June and 27 percent percent fewer in July.

“On average, the frequency of tornadoes goes down in June and July, but we think it’s going to be a big drop down,” AccuWeather Lead Long-Range Meteorologist Paul Pastelok said.

But not all parts of the Midwest are feeling the break. National Weather Service officials confirmed at least nine tornadoes swept across Indiana over the weekend, according to the Associated Press.

Those added to a total of 1,142 tornadoes confirmed in 2019, which is well above the average of 915 at this point in the year, according to the National Weather Service.

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