Greensburg vs. Moore Tornadoes

Get ready to hear a lot about Greensburg today. Yesterday we talked a lot about The May 3rd tornado outbreak. So, how did these 2 days compare and which tornado was worse. Let’s compare the tornado that hit Moore and the tornado that hit Greensburg. And incase you didn’t know, there have only been 2 F5’s in the past 11 years. The Moore Tornado and The Greensburg Tornado.

By looking at this comparison here, it would clearly support that the Moore tornado was far worse than the Greensburg tornado. But, this comparison may not be as black and white as it appears. You have 1 tornado impacting a large metropolitan area and another that was out in the middle of no-where and then hitting a town of about 1000 people. The final cost in damage from Greensburg was 268 million dollars while Moore was almost 2 billion dollars. But then again, Greensburg was a town of roughly 1000 people while Moore and the Oklahoma City metro has many more people than that. The number of fatalities would support that claim perfectly. More people equals a greater chance of fatalities. The winds from the Oklahoma tornado were recorded via a mobile radar at a close range (Doppler on Wheels) while the winds in Greensburg were estimated by examining the damage done. So, all we can say is that the winds were “atleast” 205 mph. And if the rating looks a different, it’s because the Fujita scale was adjusted between the time that the 2 tornadoes occurred. An EF-5 and a F5 are both at the top of the Fujita Scale.

At the end of the day, both storms were of historical proportion and to say that one storm was worse than the other would be like asking which place is better to vacation, the beach or the mountains. You can’t compare the two because they both offer totally different things. If we are able to gather anything from these storms, it’s that in the science community gained a lot of valuable information. Unfortunately, that’s how it works. In order to study tornadoes, you have to have tornadoes. That’s just the way it is.



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