Spencer, SD

May 30, 1998 8:44 PM CST F4

All but about a dozen homes in Spencer, South Dakota, were destroyed in the quarter-mile-wide "wedge" tornado that ground its way through the small farming community of 317 people. It killed 6 people and injured as many as 150 to some degree. Most of the deaths took place in an area of assisted-living apartments for the elderly. A singular, nearly half-mile wide tornadic vortex in Spencer, it would soon become rain-wrapped, grow to almost a mile wide, and break into multiple vortices SE of town. This was the deadliest, most destructive tornado in South Dakota history. The tornado was one of several in the area that evening. The storm system continued on into Minnesota and Wisconsin, causing power outages to 900,000 people. Roger Edwards of the Storm Prediction Center has prepared a very comprehensive page about this tornado.

The two sunset twisters east of Emery, SD.-------------------------->

Air Conditioning

Crushed Bins


Steel Pretzels and tipped semi


Ground Zero


Wrapped I-beams

Photo-Op 2000


House in the Road

Press Briefing (watertower)

Anybody Home?

Roof in the tree

Map of the tornadoes in the area

This is a slice of video shot looking WSW 3 miles east of Emery. . Notice how fast the tornado on the left descends.

Here is a very detailed site that documents the Spencer tornado on May 30, 1998.

Here is a wonderfully chronicled site done by the SDPB (South Dakota Public Brocasting) on the Spencer Tornado.

Spencer Tornado FAQ and statistics

Other links to tornado and weather sites on the Web

  • The Tornado Project Online!

  • Roger Edwards' SkyPix-An online gallery of our atmosphere

  • The Weather Channel Homepage

  • UM Weather

  • National Severe Storms Laboratory

    © 1998-99 schmidtay@yahoo.com

    This page hosted by GeoCities Get your own Free Home Page