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Please note that the page below was developed in 2003 for the 50th commemoration of the 1953 Beecher tornado. Up-to-date Southeast Michigan tornado climatology can be found here:



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Since 1950, 331 tornadoes have struck Southeast Lower Michigan, killing 166 people. Tornado intensity is determined by the F-scale. Here are some Southeast Michigan tornado statistics arranged by F-scale.

Weak F0/F1
  Frequency 64% of all tornadoes
Deaths 0.6% of all tornado deaths
Duration 1 to 10 minutes
Path length up to 3 miles
Wind speed 60 to 115 mph
Strong F2/F3
  Frequency 31% of all tornadoes
Deaths 3.6% of all tornado deaths
Duration 20 minutes or longer
Path length 15 miles or more
Wind speed 115 to 205 mph
Violent F4/F5
  Frequency 5% of all tornadoes
Deaths 95.8% of all tornado deaths
Duration Last an hour or longer
Path length 50 miles or more
Wind speed greater than 200 mph















Only one of these tornadoes has ever reached F5 intensity -- the Flint-Beecher tornado June 8, 1953.

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Tornadoes by F-Scale


Graph of tornadoes by F-Scale: 88 F0, 123 F1, 77 F2, 25 F3, 16 F4, 2 F5













Fortunately, most tornadoes here in Southeast Michigan are of the weak variety, with F1's predominate. Note: The two F-5's indicated in the chart are actually only one F-5 -- in two counties. The Flint-Beecher F5 crossed out of Genesee County and into Lapeer County.

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Tornadoes by Month

Tornado activity peaks in June here in Southeast Michigan. Most tornadoes occur between April and August. However, tornadoes have been recorded in every month but January and December.


Graph of tornadoes by month: January 0, February 1, March 8, April 46, May 56, June 88, July 56, August 48, September 23, October 7, November 2, December 0













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Tornadoes by Hour


Graph of tornadoes by hour (Local Standard Time): Midnight-1am 9, 1am-2am 3, 2am-3am 0, 3am-4am 2, 4am-5am 3, 5am-6am 2, 6am-7am 1, 7am-8am 0, 8am-9am 1, 9am-10am 3, 10am-11am 3, 11am-Noon 8, Noon-1pm 10, 1pm-2pm 13, 2pm-3pm 35, 3pm-4pm 39, 4pm-5pm 48, 5pm-6pm 46, 6pm-7pm 32, 7pm-8pm 27, 8pm-9pm 25, 9pm-10pm 8, 10pm-11pm 11, 11pm-Midnight 6












Tornado activity by hour in Local Standard Time. Tornado frequency reaches a peak between 4 pm and 6 pm with most tormadoes occurring within 3 hours of this time. Tornadoes are less likely during the overnight hours into the early morning.

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Tornado Intensity

Graph of tornado intensity by month (violent-strong-weak): January 0-0-0, February 0-1-0, March 1-3-4, April 6-15-25, May 5-20-30, June 4-24-59, July 2-13-41, August 0-14-33, September 0-10-13, October 0-1-5, November 0-1-1, December 0-0-0
















Note here that the most violent tornadoes occur in the Spring with Violent tornado activity peaking in April and May.

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