Deadly Kentucky Tornado Potentially Broke a 96-Year-Old Distance Record


LEXINGTON, Ky. — A tornado that traveled through parts of Western Kentucky and left dozens dead late Friday night and early Saturday morning may have broken a 96-year-old record.

According to the Kentucky Division of Emergency Management, the tornado originated in northeastern Arkansas and lifted up in Breckinridge County, covering a continuous distance of 223 miles. Gov. Andy Beshear reported the tornado may have traveled 227 miles.

If the National Weather Services confirms that information, it would break the record for the longest continuous distance ever traveled by a tornado. The previous record, according to the Weather Channel, was held by the Tristate Tornado from 1925, which left 695 dead and over 15,000 homes destroyed.

That EF5 twister traveled across three states — Missouri, Illinois and Indiana — a continuous 219 miles and spanned approximately .75 miles in width. The tornado covered ground at approximately 59 miles per hour, which means it covered the 219 miles in roughly three and a half hours.

This weekend’s tornado first struck Mayfield upon entering Kentucky, leaving dozens dead and many more displaced in its wake. The tornado continued traveling northeast through Benton, Princeton, Dawson Springs and Central City before retreating in Breckinridge County.


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