Tornado Chasing

Tornado Chasing 2012

Tornado Chasing 2008 – 2011

Some pictures of Indra and her crew tracking tornadoes from Colorado to as far north as Minnesota. In May of 2011, Indra was chasing during a deadly tornado outbreak across the Midwestern and Southern regions of the United States. An especially powerful tornado destroyed one-third of Joplin, Missouri, resulting in 158 deaths and 1000 injuries. Tornado-related deaths also occurred in Arkansas, Kansas, Minnesota, and Oklahoma. Overall, the tornado outbreak resulted in 184 deaths, 6 of those non-tornadic, making it second only to the April 25-April 28, 2011 tornado outbreak as the deadliest since 1974, and the second costliest tornado outbreak in US history behind that same April 2011 outbreak, with insured damage estimated at $4–7 billion.

A few days later, Indra was back on the plains chasing as numerous tornadoes touched down in several regions, with the first activity being in western Oklahoma where several very intense tornadoes developed, including another EF5 (the fifth of the year). Fortunately, they did not cause extensive damage in Oklahoma City, but 10 deaths were reported among extensive damage just to the western and southern suburbs of the OKC metro area. Other tornado clusters developed in central Kansas that afternoon and in the Dallas-Fort worth area that evening.

Indra was also chasing during a major tornado outbreak from April 13–16, 2012. An impressive low pressure area began tracking into the Central Plains on April 13, and a high-end slight risk of severe weather was issued with isolated strong tornadoes possible. Central Oklahoma was hardest hit with large hail, although one tornado was reported. Indra’s crew was personally affected as the tornado in Norman Oklahoma, missed a fellow chaser’s home by just a few houses.

For only the second time in history, a day two high risk of severe weather was issued by the Storm Prediction Center. In the discussion, the SPC stated that a major tornado outbreak was likely across central Kansas and north-central Oklahoma during the afternoon and overnight hours of April 14.

Several PDS Tornado Warnings were issued in Kansas, being some of the first ever PDS warnings. Many tornadoes were reported, but most of them were in rural areas with little damage despite being considered “large and extremely dangerous”.

That evening, the threat continued. At midnight on April 15, weather spotters reported a tornado spawned by a supercell heading towards Woodward, Oklahoma. Indra and her crew turned to social media to get the warnings out after hearing reports that the sirens were down. This tornado later struck Woodward, Oklahoma at 12:20 am CDT killing six people.

Check out the incredible video of Indra’s chase as she captures 8 tornadoes in one single day.  http://indrapetersons.com/video/

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