A total of 25 tornadoes occurred on December 17, 1957, all in Illinois or Missouri. Two were later rated F4 and 1 was given an F5 rating. In this summary, we look at an F4 that traveled close to 30 miles through parts of Jackson, Williamson and Franklin Counties in Illinois. Per Thomas Grazulis in Significant Tornadoes, the path followed closely to a section of the great Tri-State Tornado of March 18, 1925.
This devastating tornado began on I-64 just over 4 miles SW of New Minden. A tractor-trailer was blown off the interstate and the driver had minor injuries. Per the NWS Storm Data summary, the worst damage was 2 miles west-southwest of New Minden. A farm took a direct hit and the damage was rated EF4. Only the foundation of the farm remained.
This tornado (later rated F2) skipped its way approximately 50 miles through parts of Mason, Tazewell and McLean Counties in Illinois. The Climatological Data National Summary (CDNS) entry for this event is very limited on detail on the damage and this tornado is not included in Significant Tornadoes by Thomas Grazulis so damage reports came from area newspapers.
There were 6 tornadoes confirmed on September 9, 2016. 4 were in the state of Illinois including the strongest – an EF2 that crossed through parts of Champaign County.
It was the deadliest and most damaging tornado of 1990. An unusual, late August F5 tornado crossed just over 16 miles in less than 30 minutes across parts of Kendall and Will Counties in Illinois. It caused an estimated $165 million in damages. A total of 470 homes were destroyed and another 1000 were damaged. 29 people were killed and 350 more were injured.
Two tornadoes occurred on August 21, 1977. There was an F2 in Carroll County, VA and a strong F3 that crossed through parts of Illinois. That event is the topic of this summary. Another event where I had to put on my sleuth hat!
An outbreak of 30 tornadoes occurred on August 19, 2009. The strongest was rated EF3 and tracked just over 24 miles through parts of Sangamon and Logan Counties in Illinois.
It was a family of small tornadoes amidst straight line winds that covered a good 70 miles through parts of Lee, DeKalb, Kendall and Will Counties in Illinois on August 15, 1958. The SPC officially has this listed as one tornado with a path length of 74.5 miles. It was given a rating of F2.
Fujita researched this tornado family and the influence that microbursts may have had on them. Per Grazulis, “Professor Fujita’s mapping of the Canton tornado family shows how microbursts and/or other downburst-type winds move the tornado from side to side and may influence its intensity. Microburst m2 might have caused the break in the path. Otherwise the event might have been a single tornado. Microburst m6 might have caused the tornado to intensify. Both deaths were in that area.” (Grazulis, 1178)