Retracing the steps: One year after 2013's tornado outbreak
Sunday, May 18, 2014, 2:56 PM -
Weather Network storm hunters Jaclyn Whittal and Mark Robinson are preparing to kick this year's storm chase expedition into high gear, but first, they've been retracing their steps along last year's route through tornado alley - including revisiting two of the incredibly powerful tornadoes that struck Oklahoma in 2013.
That spot they're standing in in the video above was where they first sighted the El Reno tornado, a monster EF3 twister that has been called the widest in recorded history.
The tornado claimed eight lives in total - including four storm chasers.
Jaclyn and Mark visited the site where three of them lost their lives:
If there's one tornado people remember from last year's major outbreak, it was the EF5 twister that ripped through the Oklahoma town of Moore on May 20, 2013.
At least 24 people were killed, and hundreds injured, by the time it was all over. It demolished houses and struck two schools.
As Jaclyn and Mark drove through Saturday, the city could not have looked any different.
"At the time, there was miles of rubble and very disheartened people with disturbed looks on their faces," she said. "This year, it was completely different. If you did not know there was an EF5 tornado there, you would not think anything had even happened. A lot of the area just looks like new subdivisions with kids on bikes and people smiling and watering their freshly planted sod. It was beautiful to see."
But not all the debris was cleared, as they found out.
A tornado that powerful and destructive leaves a lot of damage behind, so here and there were still piles of rubble.
One of the places still with piles of rubble was the site of the elementary school that was struck by the tornado, which left our storm hunters feeling unsettled:
The storm hunters set out for Kansas on Sunday, preparing for this year's storm chasing.
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WHITEBOARD WEATHER: How do tornadoes form? Watch the video below.