Wikipedia data for US Tornadoes in Google Earth

Wikipedia has lists of notable tornadoes and tornado outbreaks worldwide for each year. For example, here is the list for 2016. There are also more detailed lists, such as this one for US Tornadoes from January to March 2016. The detailed lists give geographic coordinates and Enhanced Fujita Rating (EF rating).

We thought it would be interesting to see the locations in Google Earth. So, we imported the data for US tornadoes from Wikipedia going back to 2009. The pages for years prior to 2009 are organised differently so we could not easily import the data. We then used a variation of the tool we created earlier this year to check whether there is relevant imagery. This can take quite a long time, so we only did it for the stronger tornadoes – those with an EF rating of 2 or greater.

To see the results download this KML file. We provide the data either sorted by EF rating or by year. For the placemarks sorted by EF rating and EF rating 2 or greater, we have used a donut icon if there is imagery available within six months after the event.

Wikipedia states that the data comes from the US National Weather Service. The data does not show the paths of the tornadoes and there are often multiple placemarks for a given tornado. We also found the placemarks are not very accurate.

For examples of actual Google Earth imagery of the devastation caused by tornadoes see these posts.

About Timothy Whitehead

Timothy has been using Google Earth since 2004 when it was still called Keyhole before it was renamed Google Earth in 2005 and has been a huge fan ever since. He is a programmer working for Red Wing Aerobatx and lives in Cape Town, South Africa.






PLEASE NOTE: Google Earth Blog is no longer writing regular posts. As a result, we are not accepting new comments or questions about Google Earth. If you have a question, use the official Google Earth and Maps Forums or the Google Earth Community Forums.



PLEASE NOTE: Google Earth Blog is no longer writing regular posts. As a result, we are not accepting new comments or questions about Google Earth. If you have a question, use the official Google Earth and Maps Forums or the Google Earth Community Forums.