Oklahoma hits 100 tornadoes this year, doubling typical numbers by May

KOKH - June 6, 2024 6:20 am

According to the National Weather Service, Oklahoma officially hit 100 tornadoes this year.

Doug Speheger, a meteorologist at NWS, said between January and May Oklahoma typically experiences around 50 tornadoes, but this year that number has doubled.

“Since modern tornado records have started in 1950, this is only the 8th year that Oklahoma has seen 100 or more tornadoes, and this is only the 3rd year where we’ve seen 100 tornadoes by the end of May,” Speheger said.

There were two tornadoes in March, 55 in April and 43 in May.

This year has been active not only in the number of tornadoes but how violent the tornado touchdowns are.

“It’s been eight years since we’ve actually seen a violent EF-4 tornado in Oklahoma,” he said.

The impact of four EF-3 and two EF-4 tornadoes has devastated many communities.

While we’ve hit record numbers this year, Speheger said that’s not forecasted for the future.

“This doesn’t necessarily indicate anything for years going forward, it’s just one of those active years we see every once in a while in Oklahoma,” Speheger said.

But why so many tornadoes in a short time? That’s because the overall pattern that could produce severe storms started earlier in April and never went away.

“We are in a more active weather pattern where we do see lots of storms and we have seen the instability develop a little bit more consistently here over Oklahoma this year,’ Speheger said.

The number count might change since NWS is still investigating previous reports, and it’s only the first week of June.

 

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