National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

EF-1 Tornado in Willcox AZ

Monday September 23, 2019

National Weather Service meteorologists conducted a storm survey in Willcox, AZ to assess damage following a line of severe thunderstorms that occurred Monday evening, September 23 2019. The survey revealed a continuous path of tornado damage approximately 1.75 miles in length, with a peak width of 0.33 miles. Based on ground reports and radar data, the tornado was on the ground from approximately 9:25 PM to 9:27 PM. 


Rating:  EF1

Estimated Peak Wind: 90-100 mph

Path Length: 1.75 miles

Path Width (peak): 0.33 miles

Fatalities: 0

Injuries: 2


EF Scale: The Enhanced Fujita Scale classifies tornadoes into the
following categories:

EF0...Weak......65 to 85 mph
EF1...Weak......86 to 110 mph
EF2...Strong....111 to 135 mph
EF3...Strong....136 to 165 mph
EF4...Violent...166 to 200 mph
EF5...Violent...>200 mph


Damage Path


Damage Photos


Damage observed in the 1300 block of N. Hamilton Rd. (click for larger view)



Damage west of Taylor Rd, north of Cox Rd. Tree damage east of Hamilton, north of Cox Rd. Damage near Red Oak/Marguerite (click for larger view)



Structural damage to home blown off its foundation. Damage to irrigation pivot and fence. (click for larger view)


Radar Imagery

4 panel radar data from KEMX, showing Base Reflectivity (upper left), Base Velocity (upper right), Storm Relative Velocity (lower right), and Normalized Rotation (lower left). The red marker indicates the approximate area where tornado damage was first observed. Data are from 9:09 - 9:30 PM. Click for larger image.


Tornadoes in Arizona

Tornadoes are not unheard of across Arizona,and several have been reported this year according to the Storm Prediction Center's 2019 summary. According to the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) Storm Events Database, there have been just over 250 documented tornadoes in the state of Arizona since 1950, with an average of approximately 3-4 per year.