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Thread: 1976-06-13 Jordan, Iowa and Lemont, Illinois tornadoes

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    Member MatthewCarman's Avatar
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    Default 1976-06-13 Jordan, Iowa and Lemont, Illinois tornadoes

    I never really studied the Jordan, Iowa tornado before today and found little information on it but I thought it was a very interesting tornado because of it's "U" shaped damage path. I also found another tornado on the same day that hit Lemont, Illinoise and had a "J" shaped damage path. The tornado even went back over it's path for awhile. Both tornadoes had anticyclonic satellite tornadoes. I was wondering if anyone else found these tornadoes interesting and could explain why the tornadoes had unique damage paths. Here is the information I could find on the tornadoes and none of it is copied/pasted.


    June 13, 1976: This was a very tragic day for the town of Jordan Iowa. As Dr. Fujita described the Jordan,
    Iowa tornado he said it was the most intense and destructive tornado he had ever studied. The tornado hit the town of Jordan in Boone County, Iowa and destroyed every single building in the town. Thankfully nobody was killed. The tornado touched down 3 miles southwest of Luther and tracked northeast. The tornado turned to the north as it moved north of Luther and moved through the town of Jordan. The tornado then turned to the northwest creating a “U” shaped damage path. After that is turned again and moved east over the county line and may have continued all the way to Sioux City. While a damage path is evident this could also be from microburst’s and it is unknown if the tornado made it to Sioux City where F0-F1 wind damage occurred to most of the city. Four tornadoes touched down in Boone County on this day rated as 1 F5tornado, 2 F3 tornadoes and 1 F2 tornado. The Jordan tornado was on the ground for at least 30 minutes and had an anti cyclonic satellite tornado rated as an F3 tornado.


    On the same day Lemont in Cook County, Illinois was struck by a violent F4 tornado that also had two anti cyclonic satellite tornadoes. Lemont Illinois took a direct hit at 5:18 PM. The tornado destroyed 87 houses and damaged 82 more houses. The tornado injured 23 people and killed 3 more people. Three people took shelter in a ditch and only two of them survived the tornado. Houses were picked up and then exploded and imploded according to witnesses. What is interesting about this tornado is the “J” shape damage path. After the tornado passed through Lemont witnesses said the tornado started moving back towards the town before turning and missing the town. The tornado ended 5 miles from where it started. The tornado had a speed of 10 MPH and a damage path of 10 miles. At one point of the tornadoes life time it was nearly stationary. The tornado affected Dupage and Cook County in Illinois.


    Another F4 tornado struck Cook County on April 21, 1967 striking the towns of Oak Lawn and Belvidere and Chicago. Chicago’s south side was hit before the tornado moved over Lake Michigan. Five F4 tornadoes occurred on this day with 3 of them in Illinois, 1 in Michigan and 1 in Missouri.
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    Member Darrin Rasberry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MatthewCarman View Post

    June 13, 1976: This was a very tragic day for the town of Jordan Iowa. As Dr. Fujita described the Jordan,
    Iowa tornado he said it was the most intense and destructive tornado he had ever studied. The tornado hit the town of Jordan in Boone County, Iowa and destroyed every single building in the town. Thankfully nobody was killed. The tornado touched down 3 miles southwest of Luther and tracked northeast. The tornado turned to the north as it moved north of Luther and moved through the town of Jordan. The tornado then turned to the northwest creating a “U” shaped damage path. After that is turned again and moved east over the county line and may have continued all the way to Sioux City. While a damage path is evident this could also be from microburst’s and it is unknown if the tornado made it to Sioux City where F0-F1 wind damage occurred to most of the city. Four tornadoes touched down in Boone County on this day rated as 1 F5tornado, 2 F3 tornadoes and 1 F2 tornado. The Jordan tornado was on the ground for at least 30 minutes and had an anti cyclonic satellite tornado rated as an F3 tornado.
    Are you sure the damage path was from Jordan to Sioux City? That would be a damage path perhaps longer than the Tri-State tornado.

    Dunno where the U-shape damage path would come from, although if the storm was slow-moving such a randomization wouldn't be unheard of. An occlusion, maybe?
    "The great thing about stormchasing isn't catching the tornadoes, it's showing everyone online that I did!"

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    Member MatthewCarman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darrin Rasberry View Post
    Are you sure the damage path was from Jordan to Sioux City? That would be a damage path perhaps longer than the Tri-State tornado.

    Dunno where the U-shape damage path would come from, although if the storm was slow-moving such a randomization wouldn't be unheard of. An occlusion, maybe?
    I read that there was a damage path all the way to Souix City but I read that the damage after Jordan was most likely microbursts. I never found anything that said for sure if it was microburst or tornado damage. Most of Souix City had wind damage in the F0-F1 area.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MatthewCarman View Post
    I read that there was a damage path all the way to Souix City but I read that the damage after Jordan was most likely microbursts. I never found anything that said for sure if it was microburst or tornado damage. Most of Souix City had wind damage in the F0-F1 area.
    The Jordan tornado dissipated just SW of Story City which is located in Story county North of Ames.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Walters View Post
    The Jordan tornado dissipated just SW of Story City which is located in Story county North of Ames.
    Hi Kevin, where did you read this at? I can only find limited information on the event. I do know where Story City is but thanks for letting me know.
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    Member GPhillips's Avatar
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    The Sioux City must have been a typo. It was Story City.

    I can't find it right now, but the book "Tornadoes: Accounts of Tornadoes in Iowa" by John L Stanford had quite a bit written up on this.

    http://www.amazon.com/Tornado-Accoun.../dp/0813803683

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    Member MatthewCarman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phillips View Post
    The Sioux City must have been a typo. It was Story City.

    I can't find it right now, but the book "Tornadoes: Accounts of Tornadoes in Iowa" by John L Stanford had quite a bit written up on this.

    http://www.amazon.com/Tornado-Accoun.../dp/0813803683
    Here is where I read about Souix City. http://www.crh.noaa.gov/arx/?n=f5tornadoesiniowa As for the F0-F1 wind damage I read that wrong. The story says that happened in Story City but I did not notice that before. I am not sure why Souix City was mentioned but I will take your word and write it off as an error.
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    I found this Monthly Weather Review paper from 1980. It's main focus is on the cyclonic/anti-cyclonic tornado pair.

    http://ams.allenpress.com/perlserv/?...P%3E2.0.CO%3B2

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    Member Brian Stertz's Avatar
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    Looks like the sfc low was near Lincoln NE and the tornadic supercell was a WF type on this event. The area was also northeast of the thrmal ridge poke over E.Nebraska.
    Very typical mid June conditions...with CAPEs of 5500+ over Iowa.
    Brian Stertz
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    I saw the Jordan tornado from birth to death...I was eight years old and my parents were taking me to summer camp. We saw the thing touch down and grow into a monster, and we even saw the satellite tornadoes. It was an amazing experience and the thing that gave me a life-long fascination with severe weather.

    The first thing I remember about that day was walking out of our house in Des Moines and noting how hot and humid it was.

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