2019 Memorial Day tornado outbreak is significant for many reasons

Repair and cleaning efforts begin on a neighborhood damaged by a tornado storm system that passed through the area, destroying homes and cutting off access to utilities, Wednesday, May 29, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
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When the sun came up on Tuesday, May 28 the destruction throughout Ohio was evident. Twenty-one tornadoes struck the area Memorial Day evening into Tuesday morning.

Central and western Ohio saw the bulk of the storms with 19 confirmed tornadoes. Trotwood, a suburb in North Dayton, saw the strongest tornado, an EF-4 with estimated maximum winds of 170 mph.

This was the strongest tornado, and first of at least EF-4 strength, to hit Montgomery County in recorded history. It was also the first EF-4 in the Buckeye State since a killer storm hit Northwest Ohio in June of 2010.

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With 21 tornadoes this outbreak had roughly one-and-a-half as many tornadoes in Ohio as the Super Outbreak of 1974. That event had stronger storms on average but the Memorial Day outbreak brought the most tornadoes the state has seen since July 12, 1992.

That outbreak saw 29 tornadoes, the one-day record for the Buckeye State.

If all the preliminary reports the Storm Prediction Center has received are confirmed that would bring a total of 78 to the country for this event.

That would make the Memorial Day Tornado Outbreak the 15th largest since 1950, which is as far back as the accurate records go.