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The 7 Worst Tornadoes in U.S. History

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Key Takeaways

  • The deadliest tornado in US history occurred on March 18, 1925, across Missouri, Illinois and Indiana, killing 695 people.
  • Tornadoes were more dangerous in the past due to lack of advanced warning systems.
  • Death tolls from older tornadoes might be underestimated, especially for African American communities.
  • Technological advancements allow for better warnings today.

What Are the Worst Tornadoes in U.S. History?

Marked by their high winds, tornadoes are among the deadliest natural disasters every year in the United States.

Thanks to major advances in technology, it’s much easier to alert people to these deadly storm systems before they strike, allowing people to seek shelter in safe areas.

According to USA Today, there have been 76,618 tornadoes in the United States since 1950. It’s harder to determine how many tornadoes took place before then because of the limited access to national weather information.

Here’s a look at the seven deadliest tornadoes in American history.


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