Dallas, TX April 3, 2012On Tuesday, April 3, 2012, a major tornado ripped across parts of southeastern Dallas, Texas. As the twister plowed through the area, several major media outlets, including The Weather Channel and CNN, went live, and the National Weather Service issued a Tornado Emergency. The images captured on video were chilling: As the tornado passed through a shipping yard in Lancaster (in Dallas County), it picked up semi trucks and tossed them hundreds of feet into the air like toys. A debris field was clearly visible on video.
Here's another, even more frightening video showing this tornado throwing tractor-trailer trucks way into the air:
Fortunately, once the storm moved past I-20, the tornado dissipated, but sadly, the damage left in it's wake was tremendous.
The storm system that produced this massive tornado also produced multiple super cell storms in other areas in and around Dallas -- each had the potential for tornadoes.
Tuscaloosa, AL April 27, 2011Between April 25 and 27, 2011, a series of massive tornadoes (more than 300 of them) ravaged the U.S., particularly the Southeast. The so-called 'Super Outbreak' of 2011 produced some of the most destructive twisters in history. On April 27, 2011, one of these tornadoes, a monster one, plowed through Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The tornado was captured on video by several local television news cameras - and by several amateur storm spotters. All total, more than 50 people in Tuscaloosa lost their lives as a result of this mile-wide twister, which packed winds of 190 mph. The tornado destroyed or damaged more than 7000 homes in the city on it's six-mile path of destruction.
Joplin, MO May 22, 2011On May 22, 2011, the small Missouri town of Joplin was ravaged by a killer EF-5 tornado, with winds estimated at well over 200 mph (and possibly as high as 250 mph). Video of this deadly twister, which claimed at least 138 lives, was captured by storm spotters. This tornado, which cut a six-mile wide swath of destruction through south Joplin, was nearly three-quarters of a mile wide and it ranks as one of the deadliest in U.S. history.
Springfield, MA June 1, 2011On June 1, 2011, Springfield, Massachusetts, was hit by two tornadoes. These storms crossed over the Connecticut River and ravaged large parts of downtown Springfield. Video captured the twisters as they crossed the river, sucking up water and debris in their wake. Four people were killed in the storms, and hundreds more were injured.
Oklahoma City, OK May 3, 1999May 3, 1999, saw a massive tornado outbreak in Oklahoma, particularly in the Oklahoma City area. That afternoon, a powerful and catastrophic EF-5 tornado formed and headed for the suburbs of the city, packing winds that were later estimated to be well over 300 mph. Storm spotters captured the tornado's formation, clearly showing the size and scope of the monster storm. All total, 36 people were killed, 8,000 homes or businesses were damaged or destroyed. This particular tornado has the highest recorded wind speeds in history.
Ellis Co, OK May 4, 2007A massive tornado was captured by amateur storm spotters ripping through parts of Ellis County, Oklahoma, on May 4, 2007. The large funnel is clearly shown sucking up debris as it cuts a path through the area. In this case, the storm spotters were clearly at risk as the tornado approached. They quickly managed to back up and get out of the way. Fortunately.
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