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Event Summary

A potent storm system brought a prolonged outbreak of severe thunderstorms to the Lower Mississippi Valley region from the afternoon hours of New Years Eve lasting through the morning hours of New Years Day. This prolonged severe weather outbreak was brought on by a highly amplified upper trough which was located across the western half of the U.S. This in turn caused a slow eastward movement of the upper feature and its associated lift. Due to the systems slow movement, higher gulf moisture was transported northward which ultimately resulted in a more volatile atmosphere. Instability was not the only ingredient which was high for this event, the environmental wind shear was extreme with 50 mph winds in the first 1 to 2 thousand feet. This rare combination of high instability and wind shear is mainly what supported the large outbreak and multiple strong tornadoes.

National Weather Service storm survey teams have found 11 total tornadoes which occurred during this event. Of the 11, two were EF-3 with two more EF-2. Six were EF-1 with one EF-0. Damaging straight line winds also brought numerous trees and large limbs down across the area. Large hail also occurred during the event with reports ranging from quarter to golf ball size. In addition, flash flooding was a significant issue across the area. Roads were flooded in several locations, some vehicles were submerged in flood waters, and a few evacuations took place as a result of rising flood waters.

National Weather Service storm survey teams confirmed tornadoes in Warren, Hinds, Rankin, Attala, Oktibbeha, Kemper, Lincoln and Noxubee counties. Of note, one tornado, which moved across the southern and eastern portions of the Jackson metro area (including Byram, Richland, and Pearl), tracked across the Jackson-Evers International Airport near the National Weather Service Forecast Office, briefly forcing NWS personnel to take shelter.  NWS Personnel began storm surveys on New Year's Day across the region to investigate the mode and degree of damage. A Map depicting all tornado tracks is located below.

The map below shows the locations of surveyed tornado tracks as determined by the National Weather Service Office in Jackson. The graphic is followed by a separate table detailing each surveyed tornado track.  Maps for individual tornadoes can be found on those subsequent pages.


 

 

Tornado Information - Click on the Location in the Table for additional Maps and Details

Location Start/
End Time
EF Rating/
Max Wind Speed
Fatalities/
Injuries
Path Length Path Width
Warren County
3 S Vicksburg to 3 SE Vicksburg
Fri 12/31
4:10 pm -
4:15 pm
EF-1
90 mph
0 4 mi 100 yds
Hinds/Rankin Counties
3 W Terry to 4 NW Brandon
Fri 12/31
4:44 pm -
5:25 pm
EF-2
120 mph
0 26 mi 1/2 mi
Southern Rankin County
1 SW Star to 1 E Star
Fri 12/31
5:42 pm -
5:25 pm
EF-0
75 mph
0 1.5 mi 50 yds
Lincoln County
1.5 WNW Loyd Star to 3.2 NNW Loyd Star
Fri 12/31
8:09 pm -
8:13 pm
EF-1
90 mph
0 2.5 mi 50 yds
Attala County
4 ESE Durant to 7 N Ethel
Sat 1/1
12:02 am -
12:26 am
EF-3
145 mph
Injured: 2
23 mi 3/4 mi
Choctaw County
0.5 SW Weir to 0.5 SE Weir
Sat 1/1
12:40 am -
12:41 am
EF-1
95 mph
0 3/4 mi 75 yds
Choctaw County
2.5 ENE Weir to 3.5 SE Ackerman
Sat 1/1
12:46 am -
12:53 am
EF-1
90 mph
0 6.2 mi 75 yds
Oktibbeha County
2.5 SW Starkville to 1.5 S Starkville
Sat 1/1
1:15 am -
1:17 am
EF-1
95 mph
0 1.5 mi 250 yds
Kemper/Noxubee Counties
3 SW Gholson
Sat 1/1
2:00 am -
2:07 am
EF-2
125 mph
0 6 mi 1/2 mi
Noxubee County
7 SE Macon to 12 ENE Macon
Sat 1/1
2:25 am -
2:40 am
EF-3
140 mph
Injured: 1 9 mi 3/4 mi
Kemper County
13 SW De Kalb to 2 SW De Kalb
Sat 1/1
2:55 am -
3:08 am
EF-1
105 mph
0 11 mi 1/4 mi

 

Rainfall Information

Storm-total rainfall amounts of 1 to 4 inches were common across the area. Isolated locations received over 5 inches. A few of the highest reported totals include 5.58" at a station south of Grace in northern Issaquena County and 5.48" at the COOP station in Kilmichael (Montgomery County). The map below shows where the highest rainfall accumulations occurred.

Rainfall Reports


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