National Geographic : 2013 Nov
40 40 270 66HIST 81 U.S.HWY.81S.REFORMATORYRD.S.BRANDLEYRD.S.FORTRENORD.S.HEASTONRD. RENO RD. E. S.EVANSRD.S.MANNINGRD.S.BANNERRD. E. JENSEN RD. S.RADIORD.ALFADALEST.S.COUNTRYCLUBRD.S.AIRPORTRD. SW 29TH ST. SW 15TH ST. 15TH ST. SW S.CHOCTAWAVE.2.6miles Tornado touches down Tornado dissipates To Oklahoma City 20 mi (32 km) Extent of Tornado Damage Path of the Tornado** OKC West Livestock Market TWISTEX Team Chase Route RENO RD. W. JENSEN RD. W. S.CHILESRD. REUTER RD. E. Union City EL RENO REGIONAL AIRPORT Conoco station El Reno 6:08:45 6:13:45 6:04:30 P.M. 6:12 6:19:28 6:22:18 6:16 6:03:49 P.M. 6:27 6:23 6:43 6:09 6:19 6:18 6:15 Wind Rain 1 Mile Tornado travel speed Fatality* TWISTEX team Other (Miles per hour) 10 20 30 40 50 Collision Course on May 31 tim samaras and team drove into the path of a powerful, erratic storm near el reno, oklahoma. it rapidly doubled in size. THE TORNADO TIM SAMARAS 6:03:49 p.m . the twister is unusually wide from the second it touches down—a half mile across. Multiple vortices appear and disappear, confusing chasers as the tornado moves south-southeast. 6:04:30 p.m . from the shoulder of a farm road southwest of el reno, tim samaras and his twistex team watch the tornado forming. “this is gonna be a monster wedge,” he says. 6:09 rain wraps around the tornado, hiding it. accelerating to 40 to 50 miles an hour, the storm turns east, forming subvortices around the main funnel; some last only seconds. 6:12 racing to catch up with the fast- moving twister, the team navigates around the airport. but rain obscures their view. “turn to the north,” samaras tells Carl young. 6:15 Just missing el reno’s airport, the tornado pauses, possibly looping in its track, then reorganizes into a single large vortex that rapidly expands and surges eastward. 6:16 once on reuter road, the team races east, looking for a chance to deploy instrument probes. but they have trouble getting ahead of the tornado on the slippery road. **Generalized tornado track: from start to 6:18 p.m . and 6:26 to end, data collected by the advanced radar research Center of the university of oklahoma’s raxpol instrument. from 6:18 to 6:26, data provided by the Center for severe weather research’s Doppler on wheels. *the parent storm was responsible for 22 deaths; 8 are shown on this map.