Weather Stories

46 years since Super Tornado Outbreak

Super Tornado Outbreak Anniversary

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH)- 46 years ago today a large tornado outbreak stretched across several states including Indiana.

April 3 and 4, 1974 more than one hundred tornadoes touched down across the country in 24 hours. This event is known as the Super Tornado Outbreak and is the second largest tornado outbreak in history. In total 148 tornadoes touched down in 13 states. 335 people died and more than six thousand were injured. In Indiana 21 tornadoes touched down. 47 people were killed. Some of the tornadoes in Indiana were moving as fast as a mile a minute.

The longest tracked tornado was actually in Indiana. It touched down just northwest of Lafayette in Otterbein and at times this F4 tornado was a half mile wide. It was on the ground for 121 miles before ending north of Fort Wayne in LaGrange.

To put this into perspective – here’s  a look at the 2020 tornado stats so far. Preliminary tornado numbers are 180 which is below the three year average. However we’re more than double the three year average on deaths. One of the reason is we had a several large and long lived tornadoes in March.

Severe weather season is upon us here in central Indiana. Be sure you’re going over your severe weather safety plan.