Tornado Index # 19740403.21.18

 
 
 

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Note: This approximate tornado path has been generated from data provided by the NCDC.

The Tornado History Project generates approximate paths through separate historical archives provided by the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) and the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). Paths generated from the NCDC data are typically more detailed, but neither archive gives exact path information. There are several reasons that paths may be inaccurate:

  • Tornado touchdown and liftoff coordinates were recorded with only 2 digits of decimal precision (i.e. [33.72, -86.15] vs [33.71689, -86.15463]). As a consequence, the observed points on the map may be slightly off from actual. Note that beginning in 2009, up to 4 digits of decimal precision are given.
  • Coordinates have not historically been calculated via GPS (Global Positioning System). Thus, tornado touchdown and liftoff coordinates should be considered as estimates only.
  • Tornadoes may not have been in contact with the ground for the entire path as depicted on the map. Storm damage in any location depicted under the "path" should not be inferred.
  • Although paths are drawn as straight lines between any two sets of coordinates, the tornado may have "zigzagged" in some way.
  • Although paths are drawn as uniform thin lines on the map, it is likely that the tornado changed size over its lifetime. Damage in any location depicted under (or not under) the "path" should not be inferred.

Even with the above in mind, the data is the best available. If you see a path that is depicted incorrectly, please post a comment in the tornado forum indicating why you belive the path to be incorrect.

Paths generated from NCDC data are typically more detailed due to the way coordinates are listed in each archive:

  • SPC database - A maximum of 2 coordinates (touchdown and liftoff) is given for each tornado, or each state segment of a tornado if it is a multi-state tornado. Thus the vast majority of paths are depicted as simple straight lines.
  • NCDC database - Some tornadoes have mutliple sets of coordinates within any state, generally corresponding to entry and exit points by county. Thus, since more coordinates have been used to draw the path, the depicted path should be more accurate. Having said that, most tornadoes do not have additional path data in the NCDC archive. When they do, paths are drawn from the NCDC data.

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Statistics   Definitions |?|

The following statistics and definitions are derived from the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) historical tornado archive. The Tornado History Project can not guarantee the accuracy of the underlying data within the SPC historical tornado archive. However, the data as presented here is guaranteed to match the SPC data, except where noted.

Some definitions will not be given since they are obvious (i.e. "Date", "Time", etc...)
Special Note: This site uses a unique index number to identify each tornado. This index number is not a part of the official historical tornado archive.

E (Error) (tornado search table only) - A yellow box indicates that the tornado record contains a suspected error. A red box indicates that the tornado record contains an error and has been modified from the official source. Hover over the box for the error text.
Map/Forum (tornado search table only) - Clickable icons for further content related to a tornado.
State - The state or states affected by a tornado.
Fujita - The Fujita scale is an attempt to classify damage from a tornado. F0 being the least damaging, F5 the most. For 2007 and beyond, the Enhanced Fujita (EF) is given.
Fat. - The number of fatalities attributed to the tornado.
Inj. - The number of injuries attributed to the tornado.
Width - Width in yards. It is unclear if this indicates a maximum width or mean width.
Length - Length of tornado path in miles. Note the entire track length is not necessarily all on the ground (some tornadoes "hop and skip".)
Damage - Prior to 1996, this is a range by dollar amount. For 1996 and later, actual damage estimates are in millions.
Crop Loss - Added in 2007. Given in millions of dollars.
Lat/Lon - Contains two sets of coordinates:

  • Touchdown Latitude/Longitude - For single state tornadoes, and the overall record for multi-state tornadoes, the approximate touchdown location in decimal degrees. For the state specific records of multi-state tornadoes, entry point into the state in decimal degrees.
  • Liftoff Latitude/Longitude - For single state tornadoes, and the overall record for multi-state tornadoes, the approximate liftoff location in decimal degrees. For the state specific records of multi-state tornadoes, the exit or lift-off point from the state in decimal degrees.

St. #. - The state tornado number assigned to the tornado for that specific state for that specific year. Generally, state tornado numbers were assigned in the order the tornado occurred, but that is not always the case.
SPC # - The tornado number as assigned by the SPC. Tornado numbers are not unique and reset each year. Generally, tornado numbers were assigned in the order the tornado occurred, but that is not always the case.

Tornado Summary

Date (y/m/d)TimeFujitaFatalitiesInjuriesWidthLengthDamageCrop LossTouchdown Lat/LonLiftoff Lat/LonSPC #State #
1974-04-0318:05:00 33051018$5M-$50M-36.85 / -84.9737 / -84.7184
Affected StatesAffected Counties
Kentucky Wayne, Pulaski
User Comments   (2)      
General Comment
2008-02-05 07:48:12
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Dawn Marie Dalton
Posts:1
Rank: F0

I would like to correct the fatality count for Pulaski County on the night of Apr. 3, 1974. I was only 10 years old at the time but it was a night I will never forget. I lost four members of my family Thomas, Clara, Robert and Minnie Johnson and two neighbors Mr. and Mrs. Weddle.
The tornado hit my grandparents house Ernest and Lorene Johnson. My mom, me and my grandparnts made it to the basement, but my dad and my Uncle Lewis didn't make it to safety and was in the house when the storm hit. Both of them survived the tornado, but my dad was really banged up.
I always thought my Grandpa Ernest was hit the hardest. He lost his mother and daddy, (Clara and Thomas), his Aunt Minnie and Uncle Robert, his home was totally destroyed and his two boys (Larry and Lewis)caused him a dreadful time when they didn't get to the basement soon enough.
My Grandpa's faith in God I truly believe is the only thing that got him through this nightmare on Piney Grove Road!

General Comment
2014-04-04 07:09:39
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drountree
Posts:4
Rank: F0

Dawn, This was one of 2 tornados that hit this same spot on April 3, 1974. The first one at 5:40PM was an F4 and killed 10 and injured 113. I think that is the tornado your writing about. I am so sorry for your losses that day.

Run another search on the 4/3/1974 date and you will see it. I was camping with my dad on the Faubush when the tornado struck. We were not in the direct path but the winds were high enough to pick up our john boat and through it 30 feet out of the water.

It was deja vu for me as I had already been in another tornado in Monroe Ohio in May of 1969 that destroyed our neighborhood and house.

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