Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Deadly Tornadoes Highly Unusual for January

Monday night's weather system that brought severe thunderstorms and multiple tornadoes to southwest Missouri was highly unusual for January. KSMU's Jennifer Moore reports.

Records show only four tornadic events have occurred in January since 1950.

Bill Davis, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Springfield, says the combination of warm weather and an incoming cold front was the perfect recipe for disaster.

He says storms like the ones that moved through overnight usually occur in early spring, or fall.

In the days following the tornadoes, Davis and his colleagues will be out trying to determine the strength of the storms. He estimates some of the tornadoes had winds of at least 150 miles per hour and will be determined to be in the EF2 or EF3 range. Those ranges fall in the middle of the scale used to rate the strenth of a tornado judging by the damage it causes.

For KSMU News, I'm Jennifer Moore in Springfield.