From: Forbes, Greg
Sent: Tuesday, April 27, 2010 4:07 PM
Subject: long-track tornado perspective
that if the aerial survey confirms it to be a continuous path, the 149-mile
tornado path Saturday will be the second-longest continuous path known in
consensus is that the longest-track tornado known in the
But what is “official” in terms of NWS records will show additional longer tornadoes.
Mike Bettes pointed out a paper by McCarthy and Schaefer that mapped the longest-track tornadoes from 1950-2002: http://www.spc.noaa.gov/publications/mccarthy/tor30yrs.pdf
This uses the “official” NWS data that allowed those gaps up to 10 miles (that I have previously emailed about) to be included into a single skipping long-track tornado path classification.
I only know of one tornado with path longer than 100 miles from 2003 through last Friday, a 122- mile path in AR on Feb 5, 2008, Super Tuesday. It was continuous.
So, this would be the list of tornadoes with OFFICIAL tracks longer than Saturday’s 149-mile path in LA-MS,
in the 1950-2009 period below. Tornado historian Tom Grazulis considers all of these to be tornado families, and none longer than 149 mi.
235 mi, LA-MS-AR in the 1950-1969 period
218 mi, GA in the 1950-1969 period
203 mi, MS-AL in the 1950-1969 period; this is the 1966 event that most don’t believe
202 mi, MS-TN in the 1970-2002 period; probably Feb 21, 1971
176 mi, NE in the 1950-1969 period
171 mi, OK in the 1970-2002 period
170 mi, KS-NE in the 1970-2002 period
169 mi, FL-GA in the 1970-2002 period
162 mi, MN-WI in the 1950-1969 period
160 mi, NC in the 1970-2002 period
157 mi, IL-IN in the 1960-1969 period