Fall Severe Weather Awareness Day: October 19, 2011

Fall Severe Weather Awareness Day
Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Severe weather does not obey the calendar! The picture above was from a
F2 tornado that struck Dickson and Montgomery Counties on November 15, 2005.
This was just one of 19 tornadoes that occurred that day.
(For more information on this storm and other storm surveys,go to our Storm Surveys page)


The National Weather Service office in Nashville, Tennessee is conducting a Severe Weather Awareness Day on Wednesday, October 19, 2011. The purpose of this day is to call attention to the secondary peak severe weather season that begins in the late fall. November historically has been a very active month for severe weather and tornadoes.

November has produces 48 different tornado occurrances dating back to 1885. Some of the fall severe weather events include:

  • November 5 1948- An F2 tornado touches down in northwest Giles County, and travels for 7 miles, crossing into Maury County before lifting. No injuries are reported.
  • November 6 1885- An F2 tornado touches down near Estill Springs, resulting in 3 fatalities and 8 injuries.
  • November 7 1996- An F2 tornado cuts a 25 mile path across Franklin County, touching down west of Huntland. The tornado lifts near Belvidere, then skips to Dechard, Oak Grove, and Alto. There is only 1 reported injury.
  • November 8 1957- An F2 tornado touches down at Rebel Acres, near Pulaski, during the early morning. The twister travels northeastward for 5 miles before lifting. Amazingly, no one is injured.
  • November 10 2002- Middle Tennessee suffers one of its worst autumn severe weather outbreaks ever. Four tornadoes strike the Highland Rim during the early morning, with 2 fatalities in Port Royal. Then, following record high temperatures at Nashville (81) and Crossville (75), severe weather re-ignites during the late afternoon, with widespread wind damage, hail, and 8 additonal tornadoes. Lake Tansi Village, south of Crossville, is hardest hit, as a supercell produces baseball-size hail and an F3 tornado, killing 4. Two additional fatalities occur at New Union (Coffee County) as the result of two F2 tornadoes there. In addition to the 8 fatalities, 51 injuries are reported across the area. This is the 5th largest tornado outbreak in mid state history.
  • November 14 1951- An F2 tornado touches down briefly between the Elkton and Prospect communities in Giles County. There are no reported injuries.
  • November 15 2005- The second largest tornado outbreak in Middle Tennessee history produces 19 twisters across the mid state. One person is injured in Collinwood (Wayne County). This is the most tornadoes ever recorded in one day in the mid state with no fatalities.
  • November 18 1957- An F2 tornado cuts a 15 mile path across Fentress County, including the Armathwaite community. There is only 1 reported injury.
  • November 19 1906- An F2 tornado strikes the Mulberry community in Lincoln County, resulting in 8 injuries.
  • November 20 1900- F4 tornado cuts a devastating swath 300 yards wide and 8 miles long along the northwest edge of Columbia. Hardin, Wayne, and Lewis Counties may have had related tornado activity before the storm reached Columbia. Most deaths are in the Macedonia community, 2 miles west of Columbia, where the homes and cabins are "turned into kindling wood." The funnel was moving northeastward, heading for the center of Columbia, but turns suddenly to the north. Damage is estimated at $40,000. The tornado kills 27, and injures 75. It is the 4th deadliest tornado to ever strike Middle Tennessee. An F3 tornado kills 9 and injures 40 along a 25-mile path across Williamson, Davidson, and Rutherford Counties.
  • November 23 1983- An F1 tornado touches down near Hurricane Mills (Humphreys County). No one is injured.
  • November 26 1925- F3 tornado touches down near Charlotte (Dickson County). Two farms, six miles apart, lost buildings. Timber is downed between the two farms. On the first farm, a two story log home is blown apart. Logs were driven into the ground 100 yards away. Damage is estimated at $10,000.
    1985- Wind gust of 60 mph is recorded at Nashville.
  • November 27 1994- An F0 tornado cuts a 2 mile path through Bumpus Mills (Stewart County). No injuries are reported.

Severe Weather and Tornadoes can and do occur during the winter months as well. Listed below are some significant events during the winter months.

  • December 24, 1988- F4 tornado tears a path from the Rebel Meadows area of Franklin to the Brenthaven area of Brentwood. The tornado destroys 54 homes, 13 apartment units, 31 businesses, and 6 parked airplanes. A man is killed when a roof caves in. The tornado travels 6 miles with a path width of 150 yards. There are $50 million in damages, and 7 injuries.
  • January 10, 1963- An F3 tornado touches down at Spring Hill (Maury County) just before midnight. The twister cuts a 4 mile path, lifting at Bethesda (Williamson County), after causing 4 injuries.
  • January 22, 1999- Clarksville is struck by an F3 tornado before dawn. Five persons are injured. F3 tornado also strikes Benton County, killing 1 and injuring 5. Mount Pleasant (1 N) measures 7.10" of rainfall -- its greatest one-day rainfall ever.
  • February 6, 1942- One person is injured near Ardmore as a pre-dawn F2 tornado rips a 6 mile path across Giles and Lincoln Counties.
  • February 12, 1880- A late evening F2 tornado rips a 4-mile path across the Hillsboro area of Davidson County.
  • February 13, 1952- F4 tornado tears through Moore and Franklin Counties, moving through or near Lois, Marble Hill, Beech Hill, Marble Plains, and Decherd. There is damage to 109 farms. Hundreds of trees are downed in Lois and Marble Hill. Over a hundred homes are damaged or destroyed in Franklin County. A church, a school, a store, and a home are destroyed at Beech Hill. Two people are killed in Marble Plains, and one more in Dechard. Storm continues into Grundy County, producing an F2 which rips a path from Monteagle to Tracy City. The damage in Monteagle is estimated at $110,000, and $90,000 in Tracy City. About 150 buildings are affected. One person is injured in each town. A total of 4 fatalities are reported in the three counties, with 46 injuries. Overall, 5 tornadoes are reported across Middle Tennessee.

Right now is the perfect time of the year to check your preparedness plans. Make sure that your NOAA Weather Radio has fresh batteries in it and it is tuned properly to the nearest NOAA Weather Radio transmitter. Make sure you have a means of receiving severe weather information, whether you are at home, work, school, or travelling. Make sure you know what you should do if threatening weather approaches.

The routine weekly test on NOAA Weather Radio will be conducted on Severe Weather Awareness Day. Media outlets will be working with the National Weather Service to publicize weather safety as well.

Additional Related Links

  • Middle Tennessee Tornado Database - Check out details on the all documented tornadoes that have hit Middle Tennessee since 1830, including those that have struck during the fall months.
  • NOAA Weather Radio - Details on all transmitters across Middle Tennessee and SAME codes that you can use to set your NOAA Weather Radio.
  • Flash Floods and River Floods - While tornadoes are a big threat to Middle Tennessee, flash flooding kills more people per year than any other weather hazard. Learn more information through this brochure.
  • Calendar of Significant Weather Events - A daily breakdown of significant weather events that occurred since 1830 for Middle Tennessee -- Very interesting!

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