Oklahoma Historical Tornado Data by County
The data for these pages are decoded from the historical tornado data archive at the Storm Prediction Center. The only modifications to this data were supplemental location information from Storm Data and changes to information where a coding error was detected in the archive data files when compared to Storm Data, which is the official record of severe weather events, and is described in NOAA Tech Memo NWS SR-209 (Speheger, D., 2001: "Corrections to the Historic Tornado Database"). Tornado data before 1950 (where available) are from records kept at the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Norman, OK. The data can be accessed by using the drop-down menus or map above.
The tables contain the following information:
- Number: Each tornado since 1950 is given a sequence number within the state. For example, the Wichita Falls tornado of 1979 is numbered 79-43, which means it was the 43rd tornado recorded in Texas in 1979.
- Date: Date of the tornado.
- Time: Time that the tornado first touched down given in 24 hour time in Central Standard Time. Add one hour when Central Daylight time would be in effect.
- Length: The length of tornado track in miles. In some cases, the given mileage may be for what was likely a family of tornadoes, or tornadoes that may have been aloft for some of the length. In these cases, a '*' was appended to the mileage and a note included with the track information. There are likely many others in the database that fit this description that were not marked.
- Width: The width of the tornado in yards.
- F-Scale: The maximum intensity of the tornado given by the Fujita Scale, or the F-scale. The tornadoes are classified by estimating the wind speed from the damage inflicted:
- F0 (weak): 40-72 mph, light damage.
- F1 (weak): 73-112 mph, moderate damage.
- F2 (strong): 113-157 mph, considerable damage.
- F3 (strong): 158-206 mph, severe damage.
- F4 (violent): 207-260 mph, devastating damage.
- F5 (violent): 261-318 mph, (rare) incredible damage.
- Killed: Number of people killed by the tornado over its life (not necessarily in a particular county.) If a number is in parentheses, that indicates the number killed in the state for those tornadoes that crossed a state boundary.
- Injured: Number of people injured by the tornado over its life (not necessarily in a particular county.) If a number is in parentheses, that indicates the number injured in the state for those tornadoes that crossed a state boundary.
- Counties: List of counties the tornado struck.
- Track or Path: The track of the tornado. The SPC log gives the track in terms of latitude and longitude with the beginning and end points listed here. This was replaced with the path referenced to towns (as found in Storm Data) for tornadoes since 1959, or where documentation was found. Also see the note about tornado families in the 'length' section above.
Note about tornadoes before 1950. Records from the National Weather Service Office in Norman were used to include Oklahoma tornadoes before 1950. Since much of this data was collected through research in the late 1940's and not recorded in real time, this pre-1950 list is known to be incomplete. This listing is not meant to document all probable tornadoes in the state (or territories) before 1950 or compete with more complete works such as "Significant Tornadoes 1680-1991" by Grazulis, but to list the tornadoes recorded in this office.