Five-ton tractor 'missing' in South Dakota following tornado

May 18, 2013
351
269
11
Harding County, SD 6/28/2018 (USA Today story 7/2/2018) "Tornadoes have been known to toss around everything from cars and trucks to cows and people, but usually the objects don't vanish.However, last Thursday, a tornado near the Montana/South Dakota border apparently "lofted and destroyed some farm machinery, including a 5-ton tractor that has yet to be found," according to the National Weather Service. Winds were estimated at 136 mph. "While much of the damage was consistent with an EF-1 or EF-2 tornado, the most significant damage was consistent with an EF-3 tornado," the weather service noted. The tornado will be officially categorized in the next few days.:"

Full story at: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2018/07/02/tornadoes-five-ton-tractor-missing-south-dakota-following-tornado/752475002/

There is a nice NWS writeup with chaser pics at: https://www.weather.gov/unr/2018-06-28

No word on if anyone is offering a reward to find the tractor. Guess it would give bored chasers something to do.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dan Robinson
May 18, 2013
351
269
11
The article Alex posted is something else. This farmer was quite a collector and is still missing several other vehicles and an atv. He also had a bull skewered by a 2x6 (don't worry the bull is ok). Farmer claims the tornado was much bigger than the NWS said. Also the "NWS provided this picture of the tornado ... taken by Roger Hill". I can't help but wonder if this newspaper is confusing "provided " with "posted".
 
Mar 8, 2016
165
228
11
Bloomington, IL
“All the big pieces are in Montana. All that is intact is the engine and a busted half of the transmission on the rear end. The duals are gone, the front axle is gone. We found two tires and three rims off the rear wheels. It skipped for over a quarter mile after it hit. It snapped the housing off the rear axles. I had cast-iron weights on the duals and they flew another quarter mile from the engine and transmission. I have found parts as far as three miles away.”
“I had a Datsun pickup truck up on the hill past the renters’ house, and I have not found it. And also a Chrysler New Yorker parked there.It is completely gone, we haven’t found it.”
"East of Camp Crook Rd near Hawk Creek, a large farm outbuilding was destroyed, and its foundation was extracted from the ground and broken apart."
I'm not generally one to question a rating given out by an WFO, but I would think this would lean more towards a violent tornado rather than a low end EF-3? I get that there wasn't much out there for it to hit while at it's peak intensity, but it seems like it was capable of quite significant damage just based on these DI's alone.
 
Last edited:
May 18, 2013
351
269
11
I had a very good NWS WCM tell me once that storm surveys are often more about what you don't see than what you do see. The story needs to be consistent and many times there is more to the story on high end damage.
 
May 12, 2014
13
19
6
Rapid City, SD
I'm not generally one to question a rating given out by an WFO, but I would think this would lean more towards a violent tornado rather than a low end EF-3? I get that there wasn't much out there for it to hit while at it's peak intensity, but it seems like it was capable of quite significant damage just based on these DI's alone.
We've had internal discussion and have reached out to a few people re: this tornado. However, vehicles (cars, tractors, etc.) are not an official DI, therefore we cannot rate them based upon that.