Oakland County Twisters: A Historical Guide

A large two-story home with large, moving clouds above it. The sky is darkening and it appears that bad weather is on its way.

If you’re fascinated by weather, you’ll love our Tornadoes Map, created with data from local weather geek Matt Malone by Oakland County’s award-winning GIS team. It shows a limited history of the tornado paths and touchdown points, and their EF scale ratings, from 1953 – 2015. Go back to July of 1957, and view the path of an EF4 tornado that traveled 29.9 miles, almost all the way across the southern portion of Oakland County. In 1998, a funnel was spotted after having touched down near Otter Road and Sylvan Lake. It lifted without causing any damage – what a relief! Click on the map to learn more and get details on twisters that touched down here in the past.

A screenshot of a GIS Map of tornado paths and starting/touchdown points in Oakland County, Michigan ca. 1953-2015. Data provided by NOAA, OCIT, and Matt Malone of Farmington Hills GIS. Continue reading

Train to be a Weather Spotter: Oakland County Offers Free Skywarn Classes

 

In an effort to save lives during severe weather emergencies, Oakland County is offering FREE Skywarn classes coordinated by the Oakland County Homeland Security Division. There is no way to stop tornadoes, and not all tornadoes show up on radar, but they can be seen. In fact, the human eye is the only instrument that can detect a tornado or funnel cloud with complete certainty. Skywarn will expand our networks of spotters, encourage the widest possible participation in tornado warning programs and potentially save lives. All interested parties (e.g., fire, police, EMS, security, volunteers and citizens) are encouraged to attend.

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SEVERE WEATHER SEASON: What’s your plan?

THE WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

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There is nothing subtle about nature’s way when the sky turns an ominous shade of pea soup green and severe weather rolls across the Great Plains and Midwest with a powerful punch. And when storm-spawned straight- line winds rip into the landscape sending trees and power lines crashing to earth and tornado sirens start to scream all of Oakland County becomes the “Wilder side of Oakland County.”

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