Tornado Index # 19990503.40.36

 
 
 

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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 #
1999-05-0317:26:00 3536583143037$1000000000-35.13 / -97.8535.45 / -97.43114736
Affected StatesAffected Counties
Oklahoma Grady, McClain, Cleveland, Oklahoma
User Comments   (7)      
General Comment  Tornado Video
2008-07-20 07:45:09
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JoshLietz
Posts:40
Administrator

One of the deadliest and most destructive tornadoes in recent memory.







Original source http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqRNZqRKVyo

 

Edited on 2008-07-20 18:48:24 by JoshLietz

General Comment
2008-09-09 16:07:25
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mike westwood
Posts:72
Rank: F3

Original Source at: http://www.nssl.noaa.gov/briefings/vol2_no4/outbreak.html


edit: this link is no longer valid

 

Edited on 2013-01-13 14:03:43 by JoshLietz

General Comment
2009-03-09 22:04:19
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ellliotchale
Posts:2
Rank: F0

It's hard to say anything about this tornado because it is the most infamous in modern US history.

General Comment  Tornado Video
2010-05-02 23:06:23
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efaubion
Posts:3
Rank: F0

From Newcastle until it hit SW 134th and Penn in southwest OKC I was a witness to this record breaking tornado.  I was an on duty OCPD police sergeant at the time and shot some footage with a city owned handheld camcorder which can be viewed on YouTube. 


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYdTLEBddPY

 

Edited on 2010-05-02 23:10:53 by efaubion

General Comment
2010-05-11 08:39:44
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Caroline
Posts:1
Rank: F0

F-5 over 1 mile wide, hit my house with us in it distroying everything and we survived at SW 52 by Tinker Airforce base south oklahoma city. Distroyed entire neighborhood, killing many neighbors. We survivied only by God's grace. As many did not take shelter due to alarms going off and ignoring siren's or couldn't hear them. Started with rain, dark, then large hail the size of golfballs right before hit. Happened very fast. Could not hear siren due to rain and wind being more louder. Was warned by phone call from son who was working in 1 mile away in del city grocery store. They heard alarms and went into meat freezer. My daughter and I went into hall with mattress on top of us. The sound was like a jet airline taking off. Heard power lines snapping above, ripping, cracking of house. The mattress shimmying with the wind. Like no air to breathe when it was on us, very hard to get any air for few seconds. Lasted about 3 to 4 minutes then sounds of breaking and things flying around stopped. Could still hear the wind and tornando for around 3 to 5 more minutes afraid it would return. Got out from under mattress and saw distruction. People's homes were all in wood boards, cars blown a mile away, someone's diswasher was in our yard. Gas lines leaked and a neighbor man came to cut off peoples gas with a pair of plyers so no fires started. Couldn't leave as the streets were no longer streets as full of boards, roofs, appliances, peoples belongings. Could write a book on the distruction as had to walk to find main road and many people were hurt, bleeding, crying for loved ones, asking for help to find family members trapped or disapeared while in the same house. Hit right before sun went down after work around dinner time so most people had just got home. No cell phones worked, no water, electric, no communication to outside world. Was not sure if my son had survived that was a mile away or he knew if we did. Got to main road to get out of neighborhood and police would not let anyone pass main road. Everyone was stuck, isolated and had no information. Took until midnight to find out son was alive as went to in laws home 20 miles outside of oklahoma city and he met us there. Was much like a war zone where bomb's go off, but no help as no one knew where to go. We were put up in hotel for 2 weeks until FEMA came out to inspect. Salvaged for a week and put things in storage until found a new place to live out of the state of Oklahoma. Will not live there ever again due to the tornado's.

General Comment
2011-02-26 15:48:20
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andrewkid100
Posts:2
Rank: F0

I lived in the Oklahoma City area and in 2003 there was an F3 that destroyed some houses ad left others spotless. Completely unrelated to May 3rd tornado. The F3 was the reason why I left.

General Comment
2012-12-30 20:30:47
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DLTL
Posts:1
Rank: F0

http://newsok.com/may3/maps 


 


has victims and pictures of them for our blessed memory 

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