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A historic Northern Plains tornado outbreak occurred during the afternoon and early evening of June 17, 2010. At least 30 tornadoes occurred across eastern North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota during the 4 hour period from 4 pm to 8 pm.3 EF4 tornadoes occurred in Minnesota and 1 occurred in North Dakota. The occurrence of numerous strong tornadoes in this region is rare.

Meteorological Overview Wadena and Almora, MN EF4s Mentor, MN EF3 Holmes, ND EF4

 

Tornado Tracks from June 17, 2010


This tornado outbreak:

- was directly related to 3 fatalities

- was the most for the area since June 6, 1999, when 17 tornadoes were reported in North Dakota and 3 in Minnesota, with an F4 tornado in Mountain, North Dakota.

- included the first EF-4 to occur in Minnesota since July 25th, 2000.

- was the most EF-4s or stronger in any single event in Minnesota since April 1967.

- was the first time that an outbreak produced 4 EF-4s for the entire nation since the Super Tuesday outbreak of February 2008.

 

For more information on the influence of El Nino in the active 2010 severe weather season, visit this page.
 

For a great account of a storm chaser's perspective of the event, click HERE (credit Jonathan Finch, NWS DDC).