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Ohio set new record for most tornadoes recorded in a year

a shed damaged by the tornado with the roof off
Shay Frank
A suspected tornado damaged buildings and homes around Logan County on March 14, 2024.

As of June 29, Ohio has a new record for the most recorded tornadoes in a single year statewide.

The National Weather Service in Cleveland confirmed an EF-0 tornado in Huron County. This was the 63rd tornado in Ohio this year.

The previous record of 62 tornadoes was set in 1992. That year was also the last time the five National Weather Service offices in Ohio recorded 11 EF-2 tornadoes total, which the state has also seen this year.

National Weather Service meteorologist Nate McGinnis said the area is exiting what he calls “tornado outbreak season.”

“When we get into the summer months, you can still get tornadoes. And typically you start to get what's called less wind shear,” McGinnis said. “The summer high pressure starts to settle in, and there's just less wind available in the atmosphere to produce these sort of rotating storms that are capable of producing these tornado outbreaks.”

Tornado season in Ohio typically ends around this time of year, according to McGinnis. But he said we will most likely see more tornadoes – and new records broken still this year.

“In fact, Ohio actually has a secondary peak in severe weather sometimes in that fall season where there's maybe warmer air that's still present from the summer,” he said.

On July 5, the National Weather Service in Wilmington confirmed an EF-0 tornado hit Logan County the prior evening, extending the new record to 64.

Tornadoes need both cold and warm air to form. The summer months are less likely to have tornadoes, and more likely to have tall thunderstorms, McGinnis said.

McGinnis said technology is making tornado detection easier. That might also contribute to this new record.

For example, the National Weather Service confirmed the June 29 and July 4 tornadoes because they were caught on video.

Adriana Martinez-Smiley (she/they) is the Environment and Indigenous Affairs Reporter for WYSO. They grew up in Hamilton, Ohio and graduated from Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism in June 2023. Before joining WYSO, her work has been featured in NHPR, WBEZ and WTTW.

Email: amartinez-smiley@wyso.org
Cell phone: 937-342-2905