Total of 14 Tornadoes from the May 1-2 Outbreak

A significant weather system brought very heavy rain and severe thunderstorms from Saturday, May 1 through Sunday morning, May 2.  A stalled frontal boundary coupled with very moist air streaming northward from the Gulf set the stage for repeated rounds of heavy rainfall.  Many locations along the I-40 corridor across western and middle Tennessee reported in excess of 10 to 15 inches, with some locations receiving up to 20 inches according to doppler radar estimates. 

Below is the storm total rainfall map estimated by NWS doppler radar.

 
In addition, two main upper level disturbances interacted with this stalled boundary, one on Friday evening and the other on Saturday evening, which promoted the development of severe thunderstorms with numerous tornadoes, large hail, and damaging wind reports. 

Following the event, the National Weather Service sent several damage assessment teams to locations that received possible tornadoes.  The preliminary results of these surveys are listed below in order of occurrence.

...PRELIMINARY EF-1 TORNADO IN NORTHERN UNION AND SOUTHERN TIPPAH 
COUNTIES IN MISSISSIPPI...
PRELIMINARY FINDINGS FROM A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SURVEY TEAM
INDICATE THAT AN EF1 TORNADO WITH MAXIMUM WINDS ESTIMATED FROM 86 TO
110 MILES AN HOUR STRUCK EXTREME NORTHERN UNION AND SOUTHERN TIPPAH
COUNTIES SATURDAY AFTERNOON MAY 1ST.

THE TORNADO TOUCHED DOWN ONE AND A HALF MILES SOUTH OF COTTON PLANT
MISSISSIPPI NEAR HIGHWAY 15 AROUND 134 PM SATURDAY MAY 1. MOVING
NORTHEAST THE TORNADO CAUSED DAMAGE TO TREES AND HOMES BEFORE
LIFTING JUST NORTH OF THE CITY OF DUMAS. THE TORNADO
TRACK...APPROXIMATELY 10 MILES LONG WITH A MAXIMUM WIDTH OF 300
YARDS...WAS PREDOMINATELY IN RURAL AREAS.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 34 34` 38.93" / -88 59` 48.17"
END: 34 39` 59.69" / -88 51` 01.69"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-1 TORNADO IN CROSS COUNTY ARKANSAS...

A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DAMAGE ASSESSMENT TEAM HAS DETERMINED
THAT AN EF-1 TORNADO WITH MAXIMUM WINDS ESTIMATED AT 100 MPH
OCCURRED IN CROSS COUNTY ON MAY 1 2010 FROM ABOUT 858 PM CDT TO 905
PM CDT. THE PATH WAS ABOUT 6.3 MILES WITH A MAXIMUM WIDTH OF
APPROXIMATELY 200 YARDS.

THE TORNADO MOVED INTO CROSS COUNTY FROM WOODRUFF COUNTY NEAR
PRIMROSE EAST OF HIGHWAY 49. THE TORNADO TRACKED TO THE NORTHEAST
ACROSS OPEN FARM LAND. THEN DAMAGED THREE HOMES AND SEVERAL OUT
BUILDINGS ON US HIGHWAY 64. ONE HOME HAD MAJOR DAMAGE TO IT AND A
TWO STORY BARN COMPLETELY COLLAPSED. THE OTHER TWO HOMES HAD MINOR
DAMAGE. SEVERAL VERY LARGE TREES WERE ALSO KNOCKED DOWN. AT US 64
THE TORNADO SNAPPED 5 POWER POLES. THE TORNADO CONTINUED TO THE
NORTHEAST THROUGH OPEN FARM LAND BEFORE SNAPPING POWER LINES ALONG
HIGHWAY 156 BEFORE LIFTING.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 35 12` 19.0" / -91 02` 30.0"
END: 35 15` 28.8" / -90 57` 04.5"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-1 TORNADO IN POINSETT COUNTY ARKANSAS...

A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DAMAGE ASSESSMENT TEAM HAS DETERMINED
THAT AN EF-1 TORNADO WITH MAXIMUM WINDS ESTIMATED AT 100 MPH
OCCURRED IN POINSETT COUNTY ON SATURDAY MAY 1 FROM ABOUT 935 PM CDT
TO 939 PM CDT. THE PATH WAS ABOUT 6.2 MILES WITH A MAXIMUM WIDTH OF
APPROXIMATELY 400 YARDS.

A TORNADO TOUCHED SOUTHWEST OF WEONA AND MOVED A FARM IMPLEMENT AND
THEN MOVED ACROSS OPEN FARM LAND DAMAGING SEVERAL TRANSMISSION LINES
NEAR HWY 373 AND SNAPPING 4 POWER POLES ON HWY 373. THE TORNADO THEN
DESTROYED AN OFFICE TRAILER AT THE CROP DUSTER HANGER OFF HWY 14 IN
WEONA AND ALSO DAMAGED THE HANGER. IT CONTINUED ACROSS OPEN FARM
LAND DAMAGING MORE TREES...POWER POLES. IT CROSSED HENDERSON LANE
AND DAMAGED ONE HOME. THE TORNADO CONTINUED TO THE NORTHEAST IN
OPEN FARM LAND. IT SNAPPED THREE MORE TRANSMISSION LINES AS IT
CROSSED MAPLE GROVE LANE. THE TORNADO DAMAGED MORE TREES BETWEEN
THE FARM FIELDS BEFORE LIFTING.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 35 31` 20.2" / -90 37` 04.7"
END: 35 35` 19.2" / -90 32` 36.8"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-0 TORNADO IN CRAIGHEAD COUNTY ARKANSAS...

A TORNADO SPIN UP OCCURRED AT 1002 PM SATURDAY MAY 1 AS SPOTTED BY
AN EYEWITNESS. THE TORNADO WAS BRIEF AND THE EXTENT OF THE TREE
DAMAGE IS UNKNOWN DUE TO A TRACK ACROSS THE ST FRANCIS RIVER AND A
MARSHY AREA. PICTURES WERE RELAYED BY KAIT-TV.

DAMAGE TRACK

START/END: 35 45` 2.02" / -90 25` 35.76"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-1 TORNADO IN SHELBY COUNTY TENNESSEE...

AN EF1 TORNADO SPUN UP AT 1047 PM SATURDAY MAY 1 JUST WEST OF
HIGHWAY 51 ON MICRO RD AND TRACKED NORTHEAST TO HIGHWAY 51. THE
STORM TRACK WAS AROUND 1/2 MILE LONG AND THE WIDTH WAS AROUND 100
YARDS. A COUPLE WOODEN POLES WERE BLOWN DOWN AND TREES WERE BLOWN
DOWN AND TWISTED.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 35 19` 22.08" / -89 56` 17.88"
END: 35 19` 33.06" / -89 55` 41.56

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...PRELIMINARY EF-0 TORNADO IN DESOTO COUNTY MISSISSIPPI...

A WEAK TORNADO SPUN UP AT 110 AM SUNDAY MAY 2 JUST NORTH OF
INTERSTATE 69 NEAR FOGG ROAD AND TRAVELED NORTHEAST ABOUT 1 MILE.
THE PATH WIDTH WAS ABOUT 100 YARDS. VERY LARGE TREES WERE DOWN...A
FEW WERE SNAPPED WITH SOME SHINGLE DAMAGE NOTED AS WELL.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 34 52` 33.24" / -90 2` 38.98"
END: 34 53` 22.70" / -90 2` 05.71"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-1 TORNADO IN PANOLA COUNTY MISSISSIPPI...

A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DAMAGE ASSESSMENT TEAM HAS DETERMINED
THAT AN EF-1 TORNADO (MAXIMUM WINDS ESTIMATED AT 105 MPH) SPUN UP AT
EUREKA AND HUBBARD ROADS ABOUT 4 MILES ENE OF POPE AROUND 142 AM ON
SUNDAY MAY 2. THE TORNADO TRAVELED 200 YARDS. TREES WERE
SNAPPED...BOLTED DOWN PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT WAS THROWN...A DUMPSTER
WAS TURNED OVER...AND POWER LINES WERE DOWNED. THE PATH WIDTH WAS
AROUND 30 YARDS.

DAMAGE TRACK

START/END: 34 14` 37.0" / -89 53` 21.0"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-2 TORNADO IN GIBSON COUNTY TENNESSEE...

A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DAMAGE ASSESSMENT TEAM HAS DETERMINED
THAT AN EF-2 TORNADO (MAXIMUM WINDS ESTIMATED AT 115 MPH) TOUCHDOWN
ON THE SOUTH SIDE OF HUMBOLDT AT 220 AM ON SUNDAY MAY 2. THE TRACK
LENGTH WAS 3.3 MILES. THE TRACK WIDTH RANGED FROM 150 TO 200 YARDS.
SEVERAL HOUSES RECEIVED ROOF...SIDING...AND GARAGE DOOR DAMAGE. ONE
HOME IN HUMBOLDT RECEIVED PARTIAL ROOF LOSS...GARAGE DAMAGE AND THE
COMPLETE DESTRUCTION OF A STORAGE SHED AND WOODEN SWINGSET. A WINERY
RECEIVED TREE AND VINE DAMAGE...ALONG WITH MISSING TILES ON THE
BUSINESS HOME. ONE RURAL HOME SUFFERED MORE EXTENSIVE DAMAGE NEAR
THE END OF THE TRACK WITH PARTIAL ROOF LOSS...PORCH REMOVAL...AND
BRICK VENEER RIPPED OFF THE NORTHEAST CORNER OF THE HOME. WINDOWS
WERE ALSO BLOWN OUT ON THE HOME WITH A LARGE WELL BUILT BRICK
SUPPORTED CARPORT COMPLETELY DESTROYED. A WELL BUILT 40` BY 40` WOOD
AND METAL SHED ON THE PROPERTY WAS COMPLETELY DESTROYED WITH THE
WOOD SUPPORT BEAMS SNAPPED OFF APPROXIMATELY ONE FOOT ABOVE THE
CONCRETE SLAB. A TOUR BUS NEARBY WAS LIFTED AND TURNED 180 DEGREES.
A SEMI TRAILER ON THE PROPERTY WAS ALSO FLIPPED OVER. NUMEROUS LARGE
TREES ALONG THE PATH WERE EITHER UPROOTED OR DAMAGED ALONG THE
TRACK. A FEW SMALLER TREES WERE SNAPPED OFF AT ONE TO TWO FEET ABOVE
THE GROUND. SEVERAL POWER LINES WERE ALSO DOWN BEFORE THE TORNADO
LIFTED AT 225 AM APPROXIMATELY A QUARTER OF A MILE NORTH OF PLEASANT
HILL ROAD.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 35 48` 31.5" / -88 54` 23.7"
END: 35 49` 51.4" / -88 51` 34.7"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-3 TORNADO IN BENTON AND TIPPAH COUNTIES IN
MISSISSIPPI AND HARDEMAN AND MCNAIRY COUNTIES IN TENNESSEE...

*** 3 FATAL, 1 INJ ***

A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SURVEY TEAM HAS DETERMINED THAT AN EF-3
TORNADO TOUCHED DOWN AT ABOUT 246 AM SUNDAY MAY 2 APPROXIMATELY TWO
MILES SOUTH OF ASHLAND MISSISSIPPI NEAR HIGHWAY 5 IN BENTON COUNTY.
THE TORNADO TRACKED NORTHEASTWARD ACROSS BENTON COUNTY INTO TIPPAH
COUNTY MISSISSIPPI AND THEN CROSSED THE TENNESSEE STATE LINE WHERE
IT LIFTED IN THE TOWN OF POCAHONTAS IN SOUTHEAST HARDEMAN COUNTY.
THE TRACK LENGTH WAS 27.7 MILES. THE TRACK WIDTH RANGED FROM 100
YARDS UP TO ONE-HALF MILE. THE TORNADO WINDS WERE ESTIMATED AT
145 MPH. AT LEAST THIRTY HOMES WERE DESTROYED OR SUFFERED EXTENSIVE
DAMAGE ALONG THE TRACK. TWO FATALITIES AND ONE CRITICAL INJURY
OCCURRED WHEN A DOUBLEWIDE MOBILE HOME WAS DESTROYED JUST EAST OF
ASHLAND MISSISSIPPI. ONE WELL BUILT HOME WAS ALSO DESTROYED. A THIRD
FATALITY OCCURRED IN POCAHONTAS TENNESSEE WHEN A SINGLE WIDE TRAILER
WAS DESTROYED. A FREE STANDING TRANSMISSION TOWER COLLAPSED AND WAS
SEVERELY TWISTED. NUMEROUS TREES WERE BOTH SNAPPED OFF AND DEBARKED
ALONG THE PATH.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 34 48` 02.8" / -89 11` 21.5"
END: 35 03` 44.2" / -88 46` 32.9"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-2 TORNADO IN MCNAIRY AND HARDIN COUNTIES IN
TENNESSEE...

A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DAMAGE ASSESSMENT TEAM HAS DETERMINED
THAT AN EF-2 TORNADO (MAXIMUM WINDS ESTIMATED AT 111-135 MPH) SPUN
UP AT 320 AM SUNDAY MAY 2 AND STRUCK THE CITY OF SELMER TENNESSEE.
THE TORNADO DID EXTENSIVE DAMAGE TO HOMES AND TREES. THE TORNADO WAS
ALSO RESPONSIBLE FOR PRODUCING SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE IN THE CITIES OF
PURDY AND GOOD HOPE IN MCNAIRY COUNTY. THE NWS WOULD LIKE TO ALSO
THANK THE MCNAIRY COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT FOR ASSISTING ON THE
DAMAGE SURVEY.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 34 07` 06.1" / -88 41` 21.2"
END: 35 22` 22.6" / -88 21` 22.7"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-0 TORNADO IN MCNAIRY COUNTY TENNESSEE...

BRIEF TORNADO SPIN UP AT 322 AM SUNDAY MAY 2 WITH SOME TREES DOWN.
PATH WIDTH WAS ABOUT 50 YARDS.

DAMAGE TRACK

START/END: 35 04` 43.31" / -88 44` 11.27"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-2 TORNADO IN LAFAYETTE COUNTY MISSISSIPPI...

*** 1 FATAL ***

A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SURVEY TEAM HAS DETERMINED THAT AN EF-2
TORNADO TOUCHED DOWN AT APPROXIMATELY 329 AM SUNDAY MAY 2 NEAR
HIGHWAY 7 IN LAFAYETTE COUNTY MISSISSIPPI JUST SOUTHWEST OF
ABBEVILLE. THE TORNADO TRACKED NORTHEASTWARD ACROSS THE SOUTHSIDE OF
ABBEVILLE AND LIFTED ALONG COUNTY HIGHWAY 215. THE TRACK LENGTH WAS
1.4 MILES WITH A TRACK WIDTH RANGING FROM 30 YARDS AT THE TOUCHDOWN
POINT TO 75 YARDS AT THE END POINT. THE TORNADO WINDS WERE ESTIMATED
AT 130 MPH. A FATALITY OCCURRED AT THE END POINT WHEN A SINGLE
FAMILY HOME WAS DESTROYED. ONE DOUBLEWIDE TRAILER WAS DESTROYED
ALONG WITH THREE OTHER HOMES THAT WERE DAMAGED. NUMEROUS TREES WERE
ALSO UPROOTED.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 34 29` 20.7" / -89 30` 46.5"
END: 34 30` 11.2" / -89 29` 40.3"

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...PRELIMINARY EF-0 TORNADO IN HENDERSON COUNTY TENNESSEE...

AN EF-0 TORNADO SPUN UP AROUND 418 AM SUNDAY MAY 2 AND TRAVELED
NORTHEAST 6 MILES. A ROOF OF A BUILDING WAS REMOVED AND A TIN ROOF
OF AN OFF BUILDING WAS REMOVED. TREES DOWN ON HIGHWAY 100 AND ON
HUGHES ROAD. PATH WIDTH ABOUT 100 YARDS.

DAMAGE TRACK

START: 35 29` 54.20" / -88 16` 56.82"
END: 35 32` 40.06" / -88 11` 54.60

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On Friday afternoon another Tornado was indentified in Crockett County. More information will follow later.



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Preliminary Storm Tracks across the Mid-South

Image of tracks for May 1 and 2

Benton County, MS Tornado Scar
The following image is courtesy of MODIS Today
Benton County MS Tornado Scar


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