A day after a major severe weather outbreak in Oklahoma, National Weather Service surveyors have determined that the Moore tornado was in fact an EF5. Winds were estimated up to 210 miles per hour and had an estimated width of 1.3 miles at its widest point. The tornado popped up about 4.5 miles west of Newcastle at 2:45pm central and finally ended its cycle five miles east of Moore at 3:35pm, which makes it path seventeen miles long. This is the ninth EF5 tornado since the Enhanced Fujita scale (2007) and the first since May 24th, 2011.
This same system is bringing heavy rains to Arkansas and eastern Texas this evening and will continue to move into the Gulf States tonight. The good news is that the tornado potential is looking minimal as we push through the overnight and into tomorrow. And most of the hardest hit areas will clear up by Wednesday.