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Weather History: April 24: Record Temps, Storms, Tornadoes, Wind & Snow

Weather History: April 24: Record Temps, Storms, Tornadoes, Wind & Snow, Listed are Meteorological events that happened on April 24:


Several tornadoes affected parts of central and southwest Illinois. One tornado of F4 intensity touched down near Jerseyville, and killed one person along an 18 mile path. Another F4 tornado passed just north of Carlinville and lifted near Atwater, destroying 50 buildings. Six people were killed in Christian County by an F5 tornado, which tracked from 9 miles southwest of Taylorville to near Sharpsburg. A fourth tornado touched down a few miles southeast of Springfield, and moved northeast to Dawson.


Two women and one son lived to tell the story of being picked up by a tornado and carried more than a quarter of a mile, flying far above the church steeples, before being gently set down again. The young boy and one of the ladies said they had the pleasure of flying alongside a horse. The horse "kicked and struggled" as it flew high above and was set down unharmed about a mile away.


Severe thunderstorms spawned 18 tornadoes over across the Central Gulf Coast States claiming the lives of 310 people. The state of Mississippi was hardest hit. An F4 tornado near Hattiesburg, MS killed 143 people and caused more than half a million dollars damage. Four violent tornadoes accounted for 279 of the 310 deaths. The deadliest of the four tornadoes swelled to a width of 2.5 miles as it passed near Amite, LA. The tornado also leveled most of Purvis, MS. The same tornado crossed into Mississippi where it wiped out most of the small town of Purvis killing 55 people. Only 7 of the 150 houses in town were left standing. Another group of tornadoes carved a 105 mile path from Rapides Parish, LA, to north of Natchez where it crossed the Mississippi River then across Jefferson and Claiborne Counties in Mississippi. Several plantations were destroyed by this tornado many with antebellum homes ruined. A total of 37 people were also killed in Alabama.


Fresno, CA soared to 101°. This set a record for the most days of triple digit high temperatures for the month of April. Bakersfield hit 100°; also setting the record for most days of triple digit highs in the month of April. This record would be tied in April 1981. Lemon Cove, CA set an April record hitting 110°.


Heavy showers and thunderstorms moved into northern Illinois during the late afternoon/early evening. Midway airport recorded 2.05 inches of rain. Of the 2.05 inches, 1.29 inches fell in just five minutes; setting the record for the most rainfall in any single five minute period for Chicago. That was more than a third of the monthly average.


Record warm weather continued across the Mid-Atlantic States. Daily records included: Norfolk, VA: 95°, Washington, D.C.: 94°, Baltimore, MD: 93°, Raleigh, NC: 93°, Salisbury, MD: 91°, Harrisburg, PA: 90°, Georgetown, DE: 90°, Reading, PA: 90°, Avoca, PA: 87°, Allentown, PA: 86°, Mt. Pocono, PA: 83° and Binghamton, NY: 82°. Washington D.C. recorded high temperatures of 95°, 94° and 93° on 23rd to the 25th; three record highs in a row.

19.4 inches of snow fell at Helena, MT. Up to 30 inches was reported in higher elevations.


The northern Plains were in the midst of a heat wave. Record highs included: Williston, ND: 92°, Aberdeen, SD: 92°, Bismarck, ND: 91°, Valentine, NE: 91°, Miles City, MT: 89°, Rapid City, SD: 89°, Glasgow, MT: 87°, Columbus, MT: 85°, Billings, MT: 85°, Roundup, MT: 85° & Ekalaka, MT: 85°, Sheridan, WY 84°, Livingston, MT 81° and Cheyenne, WY: 79°.


Pushed by high winds, a late snow storm buried the Avalon Peninsula in Newfoundland Canada with a foot of snow. Clean-up was slow as most of the snow-clearing equipment was being readied for summer storage.


Showers and thunderstorms produced heavy rain in the Mid-Atlantic Coast Region. Up to 7 inches of rain drenched parts of Virginia over three days. Morgantown, WV received 4.27 inches in 24 hours, and flooding was reported in south central West Virginia.


Low pressure produced high winds and severe thunderstorms in the Southern Plains Region. Strong thunderstorm winds destroyed two mobile homes at Whitt, TX injuring two people. Winds associated with the area of low pressure gusted to 70 mph at Guadalupe Pass, TX.


Many cities in the central U.S. reported record high temperatures for the date. Russell, KS was the hot spot in the nation with a reading of 101°. Other record highs included: Concordia, KS: 98°, Dodge City, KS: 98°, Lincoln, NE: 94, Topeka, KS: 94°, Omaha, NE: 92, Wichita, KS: 90°, Grand Island, NE: 89, Goodland, KS: 89°

Evening thunderstorms produced severe weather from Colorado to Wisconsin.


Thunderstorms produced severe weather from the Southern Plains to north central Kansas. Thunderstorms spawned 10 tornadoes, including one which injured four people and caused $1.5 million dollars damage at Shattuck, OK. Thunderstorms also produced softball size hail at Wheeler, TX, wind gusts to 85 mph southwest of Arnett, OK, and 13.45 inches of rain near Caldwell, TX, which resulted in the worst flooding in recent memory for that area. A tornado leveled most of Purvis, MS.

8 inches of rain in just two hours fell at Mathis, TX and 13.4 inches at Caldwell, TX in just three hours.


Severe weather struck parts of eastern Oklahoma during the afternoon and evening hours. Severe thunderstorms produced eight tornadoes and dumped hail up to the size of baseballs. The deadliest tornado of the year; an F4 touched down in east Tulsa, and followed Interstate 44 into the community of Catoosa. Seven people were killed and 100 were injured. Along with extensive damage to area homes and businesses, many cars and trucks were destroyed on the interstate and at nearby truck stops. An F3 tornado touched down from the same thunderstorm cell and ripped through Catoosa, doing heavy damage and injuring 30 people. 70% of the businesses in Catoosa were damaged or destroyed. Total damage was $110 million dollars.


The second windstorm in less than a week developed east of the Continental Divide and spread across the Denver metro area. High winds gusted from 60 to 90 mph. Several power lines and poles were downed. Some of the stronger winds included: 91 mph atop Squaw Mountain west of Denver, 90 mph atop Table Mesa near Boulder, 85 mph at Golden Gate Canyon and 82 mph at Wondervu.


A small landspout tornado was briefly generated southwest of Lamesa, TX from a towering cumulus cloud. The cloud continued to evolve into a weak shower over Lamesa as it moved to the northeast. This was a day with all kinds of dynamics but little moisture. Wind fields were strong at all levels, but dew points were only in the mid 40s. Severe reports were only marginal compared to what some were expecting considering the very high shear and helicity values.


Several record high temperatures were tied or broken across Florida and Louisiana, including Tallahassee, FL: 95°, Gainesville, FL: 94°, Jacksonville, FL: 93°, Baton Rouge, LA: 91°, Mobile, AL: 91° and Shreveport, LA: 89°.


Gillam, Manitoba Canada reported 5.1 inches of spring snow in 24 hours.


Juneau, Alaska soared to 70°, their earliest 70 degree reading on record. This was the first of three consecutive record highs for Juneau: 73° on the 25th and 74° on the 26th. Other record highs on this date: Gulkana, AK: 63°, Cold Bay, AK: 49°.


Late-season snow fell across portions of the lower Great Lakes. In the greater Cleveland area in Ohio, up to one foot of snow accumulated.

Annette, AK set a record high temperature with 74°. They also set a record the previous day with 76°.


Severe thunderstorms injured several people when coconuts fell from trees during a Buddhist monk's ordination party in Thailand. According to this story from the U.K. Meteorology Office, two people were killed by a tree that fell in the midst of a thunderstorm.

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