Path length: 10.9 miles
Width: 1320 yards
County: Howard, Chickasaw, Fayette
Per the SPC Database, there were 5 tornadoes on July 12, 1971….all in Iowa. The strongest was rated F4. It began in Howard County near Elma and traveled close to 30 miles into Chickasaw County and ending in Fayette County near Waucoma.
The SPC database entry for this event only has a path length of 10.9 miles. Storm Data and Grazulis all show a length at 30 miles. When you add up the segments in NCDC you get a path length of 30.9 miles. Plotting the path, 30 miles appears to be correct.
Not a lot of information on this tornado from Storm Data. They state, “Nearly 50 farmsteads extensively damaged.” Grazulis adds, “Three homes and barns swept away.” There were 8 injuries reported.
We gathered information for this event from the SPC & NCDC Databases, the July 1971 Storm Data Publication and Thomas Grazulis in Significant Tornadoes and found the following differences:
- SPC has a path length of 10.9 miles.
- NCDC has a path length of 30.9 miles.
- Both Grazulis and Storm Data have a path length of 30 miles.
- Grazulis has a width of 400 yards.
- Remaining sources list the width at 1320 yards.
- Storm Data doesn’t mention Fayette County in the tornado entry for this event.
- Remaining sources have all 3 counties (Howard, Chickasaw and Fayette).
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