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Devastating tornado strikes Joplin, Missouri


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Posting this here as it may become a story of national interest...

Obviously we have to wait for the survey but it looks like it may have been a violent tornado. The tornado appears to have tracked across the southern portion of the city and quite wide. It only happened a few hours ago and there are already reports of 24 deaths, but that number will probably rise.

Joplin has a population of about 50,000. This is the latest example of a major tornado striking a densely populated area, an all too frequent occurrence this year.

We have a member from Joplin by the name of JoMo. He was posting in the severe weather thread until the tornado approached. It is unclear whether he was hit but we have not heard from him since the tornado struck. Please keep him in your thoughts.

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Hopefully JoMo is OK.

This is going to be bad. Woman from Red Cross said on CNN 2 minutes ago she estimates 75% of the town is destroyed. TWC showed a fire out of control near the hospital.

Hopefully like most early reports that sound similar.. Wrong.

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does anyone have a screen cap of the cell as it approached? praying for all who were hit including JoMo. My cousin was hit by the Tuscaloosa storm and it is the worst feeling not knowing the outcome of loved ones following the aftermath.

Here's the L2 scan... -105kts to 83kts wall to wall and rain wrapped.

post-5870-0-97981300-1306143485.png

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I'd bet my life savings that it's at least EF4... honestly wouldn't be surprised if it ended up EF5 after going through a lot of the raw video this morning on CBS newspath.

Absolutely. I would bet EF-4 as well. Tree's debarked, and basements(below grade) exposed are sone things that make me think that.

I've never seen cars so damaged. I mean, windows broken with hoods crunched from tree's falling on them. But this is something else. Cars look like they were taken out to a firing range and shot to shreads . I guess the duration , being such a wide tornado, would account for that.

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I can't believe how many casualties this took...yet again. Just an awful, awful year.

Sounds like, anecdotally, this one caught a lot of folks there off guard. Makes sense, Sunday night, people maybe less likely to be near a TV or the internet, family stuff going on, just not clued in to the approaching danger. Sounded like that from at least a few of the interviews I caught this morning while flipping around the dial. Saw one mention that this cell kind of "blew up" from not much to that over a short time period. If so, maybe that added to the surprise factor. Have not had a chance to go back and look at the maps of it as it developed yet and god knows how reliable the reports are on the major news stations, but that was some of the soundbites I caught.

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With the AL outbreak, there was the talk of the early morning severe weather knocking out power and therefore leaving parts of the population vunerable to not getting enough warning in the late afternoon tornadoes.

Especially with that outbreak still fresh in everyone's minds, having this massive death toll yet again just seems unreal. I'm sure it will come out in the NWS Service Assessment as to "why" it happened here, but F4's and F5's going across downtowns have not been accompanied by this type of death toll since the tornado warning system really got established. 1966- Both Jackson MS and Topeka, Kansas had F5's through the cities, with the Topeka one pretty much through downtown-- 19 died in the Jackson area and 16 died in the Topeka tornado. 1970- Lubbock, TX had an F5 go through downtown, including having a skyscraper in its path. There were 28 deaths there. 1979- Wichita Falls, TX, had the massive F4 mow through the city-- 42 deaths.

Maybe here, there were special circumstances, like a large amount of fatalities in one building-- we'll see if a lot of the deaths happened in the hospital itself.

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With the AL outbreak, there was the talk of the early morning severe weather knocking out power and therefore leaving parts of the population vunerable to not getting enough warning in the late afternoon tornadoes.

Especially with that outbreak still fresh in everyone's minds, having this massive death toll yet again just seems unreal. I'm sure it will come out in the NWS Service Assessment as to "why" it happened here, but F4's and F5's going across downtowns have not been accompanied by this type of death toll since the tornado warning system really got established. 1966- Both Jackson MS and Topeka, Kansas had F5's through the cities, with the Topeka one pretty much through downtown-- 19 died in the Jackson area and 16 died in the Topeka tornado. 1970- Lubbock, TX had an F5 go through downtown, including having a skyscraper in its path. There were 28 deaths there. 1979- Wichita Falls, TX, had the massive F4 mow through the city-- 42 deaths.

Maybe here, there were special circumstances, like a large amount of fatalities in one building-- we'll see if a lot of the deaths happened in the hospital itself.

That's a great point-- that these other "warning-era" urban tornadoes didn't kill anywhere near as many people as these 2011 events. I didn't even think of that.

Re: the hospital... It's beaten up, but the actual structure looks to be intact, based on the images I've seen.

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