Talk:Flint–Worcester tornado outbreak sequence

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Strictly speaking, this should be 'The Flint-Worcester Tornadoes', since these are two widely separated events. --Brian Rock 20:36, May 1, 2004 (UTC)

The Flint-Worchester tornadoes are NOT seperate events. They are probably related. I mean, two severe tornadoes one day apart? Completely related. 18:08, 16 February 2007 (UTC) Jenna Orian

Average ANNUAL tornado?[edit]

Wondering if average Mass tornados are supposed to be "average annual", but don't want to edit if this is not the case —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 15:37, June 8, 2004 (UTC)

"Massachusetts has an average of about 5 tornadoes since 1950."

what does this mean? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 20:53, June 7, 2005 (UTC)

I'm modifying the entry based on data found at:
This shows the average number of tornados in specific New England states per year based on data collected from 1956-1990.
-Isotope23 —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Isotope23 (talkcontribs) 13:27, June 8, 2005 (UTC)

Baseball team nickname[edit]

Seems like this section doesn't really fit. A much smaller section, or even a note at the top pointing there may be better. Any thoughts? --Falcorian (talk) 22:28, 8 June 2006 (UTC)


These are two separate tornadoes, and thus should have separate articles. I propose a split to Flint, Michigan Tornado and Worcester, Massachusetts Tornado.

I'd vote against; these were the most famous of a 17-tornado outbreak spawned by the same overall storm system - as they were both produced by same greater storm produced tornadoes from Wisconsin to Massachusetts, I'll see what I can do to clarify this in the article. --Davidals 22:28, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

Same here. It was the same system that produced them, and the rule is that the same system gets one main article. CrazyC83 01:04, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

I'd vote in favor; the Flint-Beecher tornado was separated from the Worcester tornado by over a thousand miles and nearly 24 hours. Even if we don't end up splitting the article, there should probably be a greater emphasis on, and more detailed description of, the Flint-Beecher tornado, as it was the most recent single tornado to kill over 100 people, and one of the most violent in Michigan history; all the information I've found on the Worcester tornado indicates it was a minor storm mainly of note due to its location and being part of the same system. If it warrants discussion in the Flint-Beecher article, then why not the other ones that were part of the outbreak? For example, two hours before the Flint-Beecher tornado, another tornado did over $25 million in damage at the GM Proving Grounds in Milford, MI, about thirty miles south of Flint. Rdfox 76 17:29, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

Point of order (two years late): The Worcester Tornado was most certainly not a minor event...many have argued for it being given an F5 rating, and it caused more injuries than any other tornado since 1950 (save the Wichita Falls tornado of 1979). It reduced a 5-story brick building to two stories. Now that I got that off my chest, carry on :-D. -RunningOnBrains(talk page) 16:58, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
Both tornadoes (and any other really important tornadoes with enough information) should have full sections once (if) a chart is compiled. Although it is tough to do from 1953 with a lot of incomplete information... CrazyC83 23:37, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
There is plenty information on both of these tornadoes to form two seperate articles. Both were among the deadliest and most destructive in history. While there is precedent for two or more notable tornadoes to be included in the same article, this is different than other cases, say the Tupelo-Gainesville Tornado Outbreak where there was continuous tornado activity between the tornado...there was a gap of more than 12 hours and almost 1000 miles between the activity for the Flint-Worcester case. These were two seperate outbreaks, regardless as to whether they were formed by the same system. I think a split is in order. -RunningOnBrains 17:03, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
If the split were to happen, the naming of the two articles would have to be something along the lines of Flint-Beecher Tornado Outbreak and Worcester Tornado Outbreak, as both these areas had several other minor (or even major) tornadoes. -RunningOnBrains 17:06, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Problem is there were tornadoes elsewhere as well, including deadly ones in other states...they would be orphaned if the article was split. CrazyC83 14:11, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
I vote to keep it as one article. I can't think of any other articles out there where events from one storm system are in seperate articles (are there any?). Actually, I thought the trend was to merge these types of situations into one article, as was done with the Spencer, SD tornado & related Derecho event, as well as the 1993 Storm of the Century & related Derecho event. If we do want to split them, I think the best way to deal with it would be to have one article main on the whole outbreak, and then create two new artciles for the individual tornadoes. Put a summary of each tornado in the main one, and then put a main article link in. I think we need to keep the standard of having everything from one storm system in the same article, but at times its appropriate for larger events to have their own space. Gopher backer 21:39, 26 April 2007 (UTC)
First off, given the significance of the events, the article is in sad shape and is ripe for revision and expansion and that should be the prime concern. For the time being, I'm in favor of keeping them together as a tornado outbreak series/sequence, but the article should be organized better to reflect this. If enough material is written to warrant separate articles, then I wouldn't be opposed, as long as the connection between the systems and a good synopsis of the synoptic meteorological system is maintained. Evolauxia 06:56, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Sounds like a good comprimise to me. -RunningOnBrains 15:44, 3 June 2007 (UTC)
Have any books been written on the Flint Tornados? Because the Worcester one got a book that ended up being kind of a big deal. --badlydrawnjeff talk 15:49, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

I'd vote to split. While the Flint-Beecher and Worcester tornadoes may have derived from the same storm, the tornadoes are not the same thing as the storm. Very little of the content of the article is common to both occurrences. Split the articles, and have each reference the other with a comment that they are thought to have been spawned by the same storm. While you're at it, the table of severe tornadoes at the end of the article doesn't fit; it probably belongs in a general article on tornadoes. --Flashcube 05:28, 18 August 2007 (UTC)

Split these SEPARATE tornadic events. While the same storm system may have spawned the Flint-Beecher and Worcester tornadoes, they are separate tornadic events. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:58, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

KEEP MERGED. The way the article is written now shows how closely the two tornados were related, from the congressional debate to the evening editions of the Worchester paper leaving folks to wonder if it was the same tornado. There would be redundancy if the articles were separated. Other near simultaneous events with geograpraphical disparity are treated as one, from the 2004 tsunami, to the 1998 embassy bombings. When and if the article grows to unmanageable size should be the time when split articles should be considered. MMetro 17:07, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

It's been over a year and there doesn't seem to be a clear consensus, so I'm removing the split proposal. Gopher backer (talk) 02:47, 27 February 2008 (UTC)

The split tag has re-appeared with no further discussion and no more reason to split, so I am removing it. Op47 (talk) 22:10, 22 August 2012 (UTC)
Disagree. The 1953 Flint MI tornado and the 1953 Worcester MA tornado should be separate articles. Steelbeard1 (talk) 01:06, 23 August 2012 (UTC)
Although I do not object to individual articles for these tornadoes, I would like to point out that these tornadoes having their own articles and keeping the outbreak page are not mutually exclusive. There are several cases on Wikipedia where a major tornado has its own article in addition to there being a page on the outbreak or outbreak sequence that produced it. Most notably we have articles for the 1999 Bridge Creek – Moore tornado, the 2011 Tuscaloosa – Birmingham tornado, and the 2011 Joplin tornado, which also have sections in their respective outbreak articles.TornadoLGS (talk) 03:14, 25 August 2012 (UTC)


First off, "How did a tornado hit" Mass is not a sub category in my opinion. It's a question you need for a report and you go to it and find out in the first major section. I took it out since people can figure it out, as there are tornadoes in New York and if they can't, possibly combine it with the upper, longer parts? Secondly, trivia only has one thing. Put it with something else possibly so it's not out there in the open. Put it in the main part, put it somewhere else, expand it. Something. I'm tempted to put a "no trivia" tag at the top since they do exist. Also, "1953 Tornado Season in Perspective"? Maybe you can combine it with the rest as it's all of a sentence and doesn't deserve a topic. Just my opinions. Babylon pride 23:34, 27 March 2007 (UTC)


Would Flint-Worcester tornado outbreak sequence be more appropriate, given that these two tornadoes were apparently part of three days of deadly tornadoes?-RunningOnBrains 17:56, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

Probably. What the exact definition of a sequence vs just an outbreak? Gopher backer (talk) 02:54, 27 February 2008 (UTC)
Generally, a tornado outbreak is a period of tornado activity with no breaks of 6 or more hours (and caused by the same storm system). A tornado outbreak sequence is exactly what the name implies: a series of tornado outbreaks. While this was the same storm system, there were breaks of almost 20 hours (and hundreds of miles) between tornadoes. -RunningOnBrains 21:50, 27 February 2008 (UTC)
A tornado outbreak sequence is a period of continuous tornado activity consisting of a series of tornado outbreaks where there are very few if any days of low tornado activity. It's not merely a series of outbreaks as it's coming to be used on Wikipedia. The emphasis is on the nonstop days with high tornado activity. That's moot in this case, since it occurred on back-to-back days and was generated from the same synoptic system, but the distinction needs to get in people's minds so that the other articles are reflecting how the term is used.
If meteorologists loosen the definition in the future, then we can follow suit. Even a tornado outbreak doesn't have a tight, universal definition, so there is some flexibility here, but on many articles there are breaks of many days between outbreaks or there are only two or three days of tornado activity and that doesn't constitute an outbreak sequence as the term is used. Evolauxia (talk) 10:06, 30 March 2008 (UTC)

Worcester fatality count and rating[edit]

I'm cognizant of the need to standardize tornado data with a singular, reputable source, in this case the NOAA tornado database, but when there is reliable new information then the articles should reflect this. The National Tornado Database is unlikely to be changed after the initial entry, despite the availability of new information, however, we don't have that limitation and shouldn't self impose it. When we differ from the NOAA database this discrepancy should be explained and cited with reputable sources. In this case, the 94 Lives book is the result of a much more exhaustive study than NOAA was able to do reviewing newspapers when retroactively rating tornadoes in the mid 1970s. Probably the most authoritative source on historical tornadoes, Tom Grazulis and his Tornado Project database, initially concurred with NOAA on the information available, but updated to reflect the 94 fatalities and the F5 rating. There seems to be a mix (thus contradiction) on the fatality count in the article. The article should be brought into unison with the 94 figure, as should the rating be adjusted to F5. Evolauxia (talk) 10:19, 30 March 2008 (UTC)

I did forget about the rating review, which should be formally cited in the article. It'd also be nice to see the original documentation and reasoning in full. Evolauxia (talk) 10:26, 30 March 2008 (UTC)
A cursory scan of the NWS Boston website revealed this informal presentation indicating the Worcester tornado was F5. Evolauxia (talk) 18:36, 2 April 2008 (UTC)

"Caught with their pants down"...[edit]

Does it really seem appropriate to use the colloquial phrase "caught with their pants down" (ninth paragraph, second sentence). DannyJohansson (talk) 18:36, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

Flint Worcester??[edit]

This is editorializing. There was absolutely no proven or documented relationship between a tornado in Flint, Michigan and the one in Worcester, Massachusetts. In fact, meteorologists have stated that the Worcester tornado was spawned within an "air mass" thunderstorm, which means it was entirely local, not associated with other weather systems. I lived through that that tornado and, in fact, it was a deciding factor in me becoming interested in weather as a child. The typical life of Massachusetts thunderstorms can be reviewed at . Since the article is not "scholarly," it can't be used as a Wikipedia reference, but it should give interested editors something to look for. LymanSchool (talk) 13:08, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

I have argued this before, and it did not achieve consensus (see #Split). I'm willing to revisit the idea, as it does seem a bit of original research to me. -RunningOnBrains(talk page) 16:48, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Split! This article is pathetic on the Flint Tornado. One of the 10 most deadliest tornadoes in American History and the worst single natural disaster in the one of the most populated states and some are arguing that these two single events should be the same based on blithering campaign rhetoric!?!? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:12, 5 April 2012 (UTC)

While the Flint tornado probably should get its own article as the Worcester tornado already has, how significant the Flint tornado would not be the reason for splitting the article. The debate is whether or not the events on each day were closely related enough in terms of the system(s)that produced them to be considered part of the same event. TornadoLGS (talk) 17:38, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
I would prefer to split the article was the Flint tornado, known at the 1953 Beecher Tornado, because it struck the Beecher district north of Flint, was the last one before the 2011 Joplin Tornado to claim more than 100 lives. Steelbeard1 (talk) 17:52, 5 April 2012 (UTC)

I created a separate Flint Beecher Tornado article. Steelbeard1 (talk) 12:58, 24 August 2012 (UTC)

Half of Average Activity?[edit]

While 422 tornadoes in a year is well below average by today's standards I think there's more to that. A few quick search using the Tornado History Project shows that only 193 of those were rated as F0 or F1, which is well below the 1950-2010 average of about 680. By contrast 192 were rated F2-F5 in that year which is above the 61 year average of about 183. This seems to imply, as I have often heard before, that due to largely technological limits of the time, the majority of weaker tornadoes and were missed. IMHO the statement that 1953 was below average in overall tornado activity is inaccurate because of its oversimplified representation of tornado statistics. TornadoLGS (talk) 03:58, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

Agreed; I did not notice this wording before. I have removed the offending sentence. -RunningOnBrains(talk) 04:09, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

Added categories tornadoes in NE, OH and NH[edit]

These states also had confirmed tornadoes. My intention was for this to be a legitimate edit.--Kevjgav (talk) 19:42, 2 September 2013 (UTC)

"Tornado outbreak sequence" definition[edit]

   I found:

An outbreak sequence, prior to (after) modern records that began in 1950, is defined as, at most, two (one) consecutive days without at least one significant (F2 or stronger) tornado.

and see it as needlessly clumsy, and BTW implausible. I suggest this alternative:

   Prior to 1950, an outbreak sequence was defined as following at most two consecutive days without at least one significant (F2 or stronger) tornado.
   The modern records that began in 1950 use one full day without such a tornado as the minimum separation between two such sequences.

   But perhaps a specialist should check whether that less artificial statement better catches the whole of both notions, in avoiding the apparent suggestion (surprising in light of our usage in the rest of the article) that t.o.s. has always meant a period devoid of tornadoes.
--Jerzyt 07:06, 8 June 2016 (UTC)

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