National Weather Service releases report on Wynne tornado
WYNNE, Ark. (KAIT) - The National Weather Service said a tornado that tore apart the Cross County town of Wynne, leaving 26 people injured and 4 others dead, was more than 13 football fields wide.
NWS meteorologists who surveyed the tornado’s 73-mile path said it had a maximum width of 1,600 yards and peak winds of 150 miles per hour.
According to the NWS report, the tornado originated 5 miles southeast of Fair Oaks near Highway 284 at 4:30 p.m. March 31, then tracked toward Wynne.
“EF-2 damage was observed north of Ellis Chapel and McElroy,” the report stated. “The tornado strengthened to an EF-3 as it moved into west Wynne.”
The NWS said the storm “ravaged” the town, destroying homes and damaging the town’s high school.
As it moved away from Wynne, the tornado weakened to an EF-2 as it moved toward Parkin and Earle.
“Very few damage indicators aided in the observed strength as it traversed mostly farmland,” the NWS reported.
The meteorologists observed EF-3 damage as the tornado crossed over Corna Lake in Tipton County, Tennessee, and extreme southern Mississippi County.
“As the tornado climbed the bluff [across the Mississippi River], the tornado circulation began to weaken,” the report said.
An hour and a half later, the tornado finally lifted at 5:54 p.m. south of Burlison, Tenn.
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