El Reno, OK tornado EF5 and widest on record!June 4th, 2013 at 3:04 pm by Bill Steffen under Bill's Blog, News, Weather
Click on the image to enlarge. The El Reno, Oklahoma tornado has now been rated EF5 and the widest tornado on record, with a maximum width of 2.6 miles. It’s not always easy to tell the width of a tornado – where the circulation stops. Strong tornadoes can through debris out miles away. Multiple-vortex tornadoes have smaller “tornadoes” rotating around the central core. You can see in the image that the tornado crossed major highways (I-40, US 81, US 270). The tornado covered 16.2 miles in 40 minutes (24.3 mph). It’s also been given a very high maximum wind speed of 295 mph. The upgrade was based on information from OU RaxPol Doppler data or mobile radar data, that measured low level winds of 296 miles per hour. The National Weather Service said some of the subvortices had a forward movement of up to 180 miles per hour. This tornado is double the width of the May 20 tornado in Moore, Oklahoma. The F-4 Wilber-Hallam, Nebraska, tornado May 22, 2004 was the previous record holder for the widest tornado on record at 2.5 miles wide.The maximum wind measured in a tornado was 318 mph from a portable Doppler during the Moore OK tornado of 5/3/99. Here’s video of the twister. More video. Here’s Reed Timmer on the upgrade.