In early May 1999, the Central United States was affected by a widespread and violent tornado outbreak that produced the famed F5 Bridge Creek–Moore tornado. Over the course of a week, 152 tornadoes touched down across the country and Canada, resulting in 50 fatalities and over $1.2 billion in damage. This list documents those 152 tornadoes that touched down.
To cut to the chase, this is essentially a guinea pig nomination. As far as I'm aware, this is the first tornado list article to work its way to FLC so there is no precedent to base this article on. I'm all ears for any suggestions you all have for the article on top of comments regarding its quality. Thanks in advance for your comments! Cyclonebiskit (talk) 15:37, 5 June 2013 (UTC)
If I'm reading WP:COLLAPSE correctly, you should avoid having these tables collapsed. We have many lists with 152+ items on it so it'd be just as well for you to create a single list. That way you'd also gain the advantage that you could make the table sortable and compare tornadoes with each other that happened on different days. Also very much dislike different formatting from day to day, different col widths, colspan headings etc.
Removed the forced collapse per WP:COLLAPSE (hides content). As for making this a single list, I think that would end up making this a whole lot messier. There are already eight columns within this table, and if this were to become one list, the time column would have to be expanded (or become annoyingly tall) or a ninth column for date would need to be put in. Also, I personally don't see much benefit in combining this into a single table. Aside from having the option to sort it (what would really be sortable, F#, size and track?) it would be a pain to navigate the page. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 17:21, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Single list is best. I would have to oppose it in this current state. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:43, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Maybe for other types of lists, but in the case of tornadoes, there's nothing really worth sorting to warrant a need for a single table. It's more effective to have it divided by day. How would you suggest the table be structured, taking into account that there needs to be a per-date division? Cyclonebiskit (talk) 18:40, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
The date of the cyclone is an additional column. We may need to restructure or remove some items which aren't that important. A single table is imperative in my mind. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:54, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Why is it imperative? It works perfectly fine as is. I'm opting to wait until further input on this one is received from others. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 20:46, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
I count as one of the "others" I guess. As I said below, the new format is nonsense and any guidelines that get in the way can be covered by WP:IAR. United States Man (talk) 21:17, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Not sure about the large font and overuse of bold text.
Is there an issue with the emphasis aspect of the bold text? Cyclonebiskit (talk) 17:21, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
It's unnecessary, and makes the table look a little like a school project I'm afraid. And WP:BADEMPHASIS discourages the use of bold to emphasise things. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:43, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
I'm going to overlook the school project remark there. Removed the use of bold on the locations in the tables since fighting God usually don't end well. However, I've left the F#s bolded and large since there's no issue there (discouraged, but not disallowed). It works better aesthetically than having relatively smaller text in a field of color. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 18:40, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Ok, the school project comment was intended to let you know that we tend to avoid pure HTML markup, to maintain a consistent look and feel across Wikipedia. Use of BIG and BOLD is entirely unnecessary. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:54, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Make sure all tables you use meet WP:ACCESS for row and col scopes.
Only issue I see with WP:ACCESS is with avoiding column headers in the middle of the table. Basically, it says the way the state separation is done in this tables doesn't work and the tables should be split into sub-tables or have yet another column added. The latter of these clearly will not work since it'll be far too stretched out. The former of these just creates excessive tables, in my opinion, and makes it unnecessarily broken up since there are so many states covered. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 17:32, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Do I keep it in the format of a normal citation and just remove the <ref name=""/> stuff? An example would be really helpful. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 21:09, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
I'll butt in here and ask you to not do this, as it makes it much more difficult to keep track of what is cited in the table, and what is completely uncited. Titoxd(?!? - cool stuff) 21:24, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
"see section on this tornado " no, just use an appropriate wikilink.
"1 death – see section on this tornado – an additional six " -> "One death..." (don't bold it).
The bold is there to emphasize that the tornado was a killer tornado. They're relatively rare in comparison the the number that touch down (average of less 20 per year out of 1,200 tornadoes). It's common practice to emphasize this in the SPC (they use red text to denote tornadoes with casualties) so I don't see the harm in doing that here. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 17:21, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Overall I see no major issue with the concept of a list of this inclusivity, but the structure needs a lot of work for me. The Rambling Man (talk) 16:37, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Forgive me for butting in, but couldn't WP:IAR apply to some of this awful formatting? I am talking specifically about the bolding and the table formatting. It looks ridiculous. And I don't mean to offend you The Rambling Man, but it seems to me like you may be using a bit of blackmail to force Cyclonebiskit to make these stupid changes. Even MoS guidelines fall under IAR, as I have yet to see anything that says otherwise. United States Man (talk) 20:45, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Well I won't forgive you. I'm not using "blackmail" for anything. I'm merely one reviewer suggesting that a bunch of separated collapsed tables that were all formatted differently with BIG BOLD text that can't be sorted wasn't a good start. If you both disagree with what I've said, I'm fine with that, but I will oppose the nomination for FLC. I'll leave this nomination for others to comment since my initial comments have been taken so badly. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:27, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
I'm not sure where this blackmail thing came from either. Trying to figure out a happy medium here since we're of differing opinions on the format. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 21:31, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
United States Man, it is not civil to ascribe ulterior motives to reviewers; it's a personal attack, and it's uncalled for. And I'll say it again: If your only argument is WP:IAR, you have no argument. Titoxd(?!? - cool stuff) 21:41, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
(ec)Well, maybe I am a bad observer. You two are not the only ones who notice that. I am sorry for my "fit of rage", but no one answered my question about IAR. The bolding is the main thing that I don't like. The sorting is fine since I don't think it interferes with the bolding. I have another issue with the links in the damage section. It seems that it would look better with see section/article on this tornado than the long links that are there now. But I am fine either way on that issue. United States Man (talk) 21:45, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
I'm not keen on the other proposed design of this list, but as I've said before, I'm just one reviewer, so feel free to ignore all my comments. Community consensus should prevail. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:14, 20 June 2013 (UTC)
Note – Okay, after all that nonsense I've constructed a newer version of the table that should comply far better with WP:MOS than the others. I've just finished implementing it into the article. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 16:00, 27 June 2013 (UTC)
Is it necessary that the date be included as a column? Makes it easier for editing purposes if there are separate tables. United States Man (talk) 03:27, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
Condensing them into a single table was one of the major concerns brought up by TRM. I personally don't have any issues editing a table of this length, just need to use the search tool to quickly get to specific tornadoes, though it can be cumbersome since it's a lot of data. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 03:54, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
That was what my problem was. But, I don't have any reason to edit this (you have the information in a great updated condition), so it really doesn't bother me that much. United States Man (talk) 03:57, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
"much of the Central and parts of the Eastern United States" - should these direction things be capitalized?
They're regions of the United States, not just directional, so I would think so. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 15:10, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
" with 70 being confirmed" - I think the "being" here is redundant
"The event began as a strong area of low pressure moved out of the Rocky Mountains and into the High Plains on May 2" - the "as" here is inappropriate, as at first it's ambiguous whether it means "when", "because", or "in the form of". I first read it as "The event began as a strong area of low pressure." See Garden path sentence
"All dates are based on the local time zone where the tornado touched down; however, all times are in Coordinated Universal Time for consistency." - I don't get this
I wasn't exactly sure how to word this in the first place so I'm not surprised. What I'm trying to get across here is that all the events are listed by their UTC time; however, the dates are based on the local time. Just look at the first 10 tornadoes. They all say May 2, but the last two are after midnight UTC (which would normally indicate May 3); however, since all tornado reports are listed by their local time, I felt it more appropriate to keep the local day over changing it to the UTC day. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 15:10, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
Ehh, I think that's a little confusing. I think it'd work better having everything in UTC time, including dates. Unless there is precedence against that, I think it'd be less confusing that way. ♫ Hurricanehink (talk) 15:25, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
Precedent would be every tornado table on Wikipedia, haha. That's how we have them styled. Only agency that lists tornadoes by UTC time is the Storm Prediction Center, and they just relay the reports from the local NWS offices which use local time. Additionally, the final reports on the tornadoes from the NCDC are all in local time. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 15:33, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
If that's the case, then no biggie! :) ♫ Hurricanehink (talk) 15:36, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
Comments - much better table layout, thank you for taking the time and effort to do that.
"of the Central and parts of the Eastern " why not "of Central and parts of Eastern..."?
Doesn't sound right when worded that way: "...a large tornado outbreak took place across much of Central and parts of Eastern United States." Adding "the" improves the flow. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 19:41, 30 June 2013 (UTC)
Not keen on the centrally-aligned total row.
Didn't notice that before. Guess align="right" doesn't override scope="col". Changed it to a normal row that doesn't sort. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 19:41, 30 June 2013 (UTC)
"Outbreak event" is an odd title, something like "List of tornadoes" would work better for me...
Why are many of the titles of references in italics?
I provided both the title of the journal and the chapter in which the specific information was from. The cite journal template links the chapter title over the journal title and italicizes it in the process. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 19:41, 30 June 2013 (UTC)
Looking at the map, I see one in Michigan, one in Hull, and one in Wisconsin. Are these all generally considered part of the Oklahoma outbreak? Also, I wonder if the title is appropriate as one would expect an Oklahoma outbreak to be in Oklahoma.
It's been a question of mine too actually. I would be fine with moving this to meet the current method of naming tornado outbreak articles (naming it by the dates it occurred); however, this outbreak has become most known for the events in Oklahoma rather than anywhere else and that's what people look for.
Also, thanks USM for fixing the contradiction in the lead. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 18:00, 20 July 2013 (UTC)
If this is what the sources go with, it's good enough for me. Support. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 23:14, 20 July 2013 (UTC)
Support - well this has been hanging out here at the bottom for a while, hasn't it. My only comment is "Following the extensive outbreak, activity became increasingly scattered from May 5 to 8; 26 tornadoes touching down across the Eastern United States and Quebec." - the bit after the semicolon is off; it should either be "touched" down, or the semicolon should be a comma and the phrase should start "with 26 tornadoes touching down". --PresN 21:22, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
Resolved comments from Giants2008 (Talk) 23:27, 3 September 2013 (UTC)
Minor, but the semi-colon in the last sentence of the lead should be a regular old comma instead.
First two words in the List of tornadoes heading can safely be dropped.
For the F4 tornado N of Wellington to Wichita area, the note needs a period at the end. Giants2008 (Talk) 21:33, 30 August 2013 (UTC)
I've never been good with alt text descriptions but I gave it a shot. Made the other adjustments as well. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 16:36, 2 September 2013 (UTC)
Comments- This is a huge undertaking and you are to be commended for your effort and a job very well done.
I haven’t looked through the table references, but looking at the overall structure and the lead/intro information I wanted to make a few comments:
There is a lot of information packed into the lead/intro. Some of the most significant facts could use citations. This includes (but is not limited to):
no reference for “152 tornadoes” (but the storm events database for the May 2–7 reports “196 events” when the "all tornadoes" option is selected).
The 152 total is the count of all tornadoes once the duplicated reports from the 196 total (the database lists events by counties, so tornadoes that track through more than one county have multiple reports). There's no direct way to cite this total I believe. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 16:36, 2 September 2013 (UTC)
You can use the reference putting it in a note which explains the reduced number after duplication is removed. Otherwise you are not explaining where the number comes from.
“… outbreak on record, with 70 confirmed.” Probably needs a citation (you do cite the 10 tornadoes in Nebraska), also “confirmed” suggests there are unconfirmed tornadoes too.
The 70 confirmed comes from source #1 (which is used for other details in the first paragraph). Cyclonebiskit (talk) 16:36, 2 September 2013 (UTC)
Without a citation there is no way for anyone to know that.
Does “confirmed” (versus unconfirmed) explain the 152 versus 196 discrepancy above?
“Over the following 48 hours,…” might want to specify May 3–5, and at least one citation is probably necessary between that sentence and the next.
Added the date and moved the overall citation to the end of the paragraph since all the information stems from the database. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 16:36, 2 September 2013 (UTC)
Since the heading “Confirmed tornadoes” is used, some kind of definition of confirmed would be helpful.
You may want to add a note or comment with the definition of confirmed that the default sort order for the table is by date, followed by time… Actually, as I look at the table I’m not sure how it’s organized. Is there a default organization?-Godot13 (talk) 06:36, 2 September 2013 (UTC)
The table is organized chronologically by default. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 16:36, 2 September 2013 (UTC)
See the comment below.
I’m noticing that the times used are local times of the location where the tornado touched ground. While the majority of the main affected states are all in the same time zone, parts of those states, and entire other states, are in different time zones. If the weather conditions causing the tornadoes were to cross a time zone (e.g., eastern to/from western South Dakota or Nebraska, or Alabama to/from Georgia, Indiana to/from Illinois) the sorting chronology of the time column (possibly the date column) does not accurately reflect the movement or relative timing of the storm cells… For example, if a storm cell crosses a time zone from East to West causing tornadoes as it moves, chronologically (for at least one hour) it would appear as if those touching down after the time zone crossing occurred prior to those before. It’s also late and my brain may not be working…-Godot13 (talk) 06:59, 2 September 2013 (UTC)
That issue is sidestepped by using UTC (Universal Time). While the dates used are for the local time, to avoid any confusion from time zones, all times were adjusted to the meteorological standard of UTC. This is explained with Note #3. Cyclonebiskit (talk) 16:36, 2 September 2013 (UTC)
The use of a local date with UTC time is problematic, at least visually. Following the order in the table, days and time seem at odds: the last two May 2 dates have times that suggest it's actually May 3, or else the records are out of order; long before May 3 becomes May 4 the UTC time seems to have already rolled over; when May 4 changes to May 5 the times suggest that there were no tornadoes for about 20 hours, a few records later there are some, then it's May 6. You're using two descriptors of the time of an event, but they are using different anchor points (local vs. UTC).-Godot13 (talk) 04:09, 4 September 2013 (UTC)
Comments The National Weather Service of Norman OK. used the name "Great Plains Tornado Outbreak of May 3-4, 1999" for events that include most of the tornadoes mentioned in this list. I see that the page title follows rule number 4 of the Wikipedia:WikiProject Severe weather/Tornado naming convention. I understand that we want to cover the whole life of that storm so a title limiting the dates to May 3-4 wouldn't work. However, I don't see how that same logic doesn't apply to calling it the ""Oklahoma tornado outbreak", when we want to cover more than just Oklahoma. Shouldn't naming rule number 2 apply here: "that used by NOAA or an official weather agency should take precedence except in extraordinary circumstances". Are there extraordinary circumstances for why we shouldn't use the NWS name? Dkriegls(talk to me!) 23:32, 3 September 2013 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this page.