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NWS Charleston, SC - Mother's Day Tornado Outbreak - May 11, 2008

Mother's Day Tornado Outbreak - May 11, 2008


Graphic of Damage - click to enlarge


SUMMARY:

Five tornadoes struck Southeast Georgia and Southeast South Carolina on May 11, 2008. The strongest tornado, a violent EF-4, caused significant damage in McIntosh County, GA. This was only the second EF-4 tornado to ever hit in the NWS Charleston, SC Forecast Area, and only the 9th EF-4 tornado to strike anywhere in the State of Georgia since 1950. The only other EF-4 tornado to hit in the Charleston, SC Forecast Area was in Bulloch County, GA on April 25, 1929. That tornado killed 40 people and injured 300.

In addition to the McIntosh County EF-4 tornado, there was one EF-3 tornado in Tattnall County, GA (near Cobbtown), an EF-2 tornado in Charleston County, SC (near Wadmalaw Island and Johns Island), an EF-1 tornado in Screven County, GA (near Emmalane) and another in Bulloch County, GA (near Nevils and Denmark). Significant straight line wind damage, as well as severe hail, also occurred in many other places in Southeast Georgia and Southeast South Carolina from May 10-11, 2008. Overall, there were no deaths and 12 people were injured during this severe weather outbreak.


Tornado/Significant Straight Line Winds in the Charleston CWA:

Emmalane (Jenkins County) EF-1 Tornado and Jenkins County Straight Line Wind Damage
Strength..........EF-1
Peak Winds....95-110 mph
Max Width.....1200 yards
Track Length..1 mile
Injuries...........1
Deaths............0

Cobbtown (Tattnall County) EF-3 Tornado
Strength..........EF-3
Peak Winds....140-150 mph
Max Width.....200 yards
Track Length..4.5 miles starting at the intersection of the Toombs, Emanuel and Candler County Lines
Injuries...........2
Deaths............0

Screven County Straight Line Wind Damage
Peak Winds....110
Injuries...........0
Deaths............0

Nevils-Denmark (Bulloch County) EF-1 Tornado
Strength..........EF-1
Peak Winds....105-110 mph
Max Width.....400 yards
Track Length..2.25 miles
Injuries...........0
Deaths............0

Darien (McIntosh County) EF-4 Tornado
Strength..........EF-4
Peak Winds....170-180 mph
Max Width.....700 yards
Track Length..11 miles
Injuries...........9
Deaths............0

Wadmalaw Island/Johns Island (Charleston County) EF-2 Tornado
Strength..........EF-2
Peak Winds....120 mph
Max Width.....1 mile
Track Length..12 miles
Injuries...........0
Deaths............0



Storm Prediction Center Products:

Mesoscale Discussions:
Mesoscale Discussion 880 / (graphic) - issued at 440 AM EDT
Mesoscale Discussion 882 / (graphic) - issued at 613 AM EDT
Mesoscale Discussion 884 / (graphic) - issued at 724 AM EDT
Mesoscale Discussion 885 / (graphic) - issued at 851 AM EDT
Mesoscale Discussion 896 / (graphic) - issued at 707 PM EDT

Convective Watches:
Tornado Watch 304 - issued at 235 AM EDT
Tornado Watch 305 - issued at 550 AM EDT
Tornado Watch 308 - issued at 245 PM EDT


Satellite/Radar Imagery:

 
  Infrared Satellite Imagery - click to enlarge/loop Water Vapor Satellite Imagery - click to enlarge/loop
KCLX Radar Imagery - click to enlarge/loop


Event Summary Team: Doug Berry, Michael Emlaw, John Quagliariello, Steven Taylor, Frank Alsheimer, Jon Jelsema, Wendy Moen
Web Design: Robert Bright, John Quagliariello


National Weather Service
Charleston Weather Forecast Office
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Charleston, S.C. 29406-6162
(843) 744-0303
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Page last modified: May 15, 2008
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