National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Heavy rain and higher elevation snow continue for the Northwest, fire danger continues in Southern California

A series of Pacific storms will bring strong winds, heavy rain, and mountain snow to the Pacific Northwest and northern Rockies through Sunday. Heavy rainfall and flooding is possible from the Mississippi Valley to the Deep South and Southeast U.S. this weekend and into early next week. Dry winds will prolong the fire weather threat for Southern California for several days. Read More >

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A tornado outbreak occurred during the afternoon and evening hours of the May 20, 2013, and was the last day of a three-day stretch of significant severe weather from May 18-20, 2013. This event also produced the most deadly and devastating tornado of the year for Oklahoma and the the United States.

Several supercell thunderstorms developed during early afternoon of May 20th along a dryline in central Oklahoma. One of these storms developed near Chickasha and rapidly intensified, producing a tornado which touched down at 2:56 PM CDT on the west side of Newcastle. The tornado became violent within minutes, then tracked east-northeastward across the city of Moore and parts of south Oklahoma City for about 40 minutes before finally dissipating near Lake Stanley Draper. The tornado caused catastrophic damage in these areas, and was given a maximum rating of EF-5. The tornado claimed 24 lives, injured scores of people, and caused billions of dollars in damage.

Several other tornadoes also occurred in Stephens and Lincoln Counties during the afternoon of May 20. In addition to the tornadoes, large hail and damaging winds caused damage in many areas.

Below is a map with the preliminary damage path of the Newcastle-Moore-South OKC tornado. Contours delineate the extent of EF-0 (light blue), EF-1 (green), EF-2 (yellow), EF-3 (orange), EF-4 (red), and EF-5 (purple) damage from the survey.