September 20 2002 Tornados

September usually brings tranquil weather to Indiana. Not so on September 20, 2002, when several tornadoes struck the state. The biggest tornado rampaged through rural and urban parts of Indiana for 112 miles, becoming the second longest tornado track in Indiana history after the Monticello tornado of April 3, 1974. The long track tornado reached F3 intensity in Ellettsville, Martinsville, and Greenwood, with winds of at least 160 mph. The tornado began in Ellettsville at 12:59 PM EST and roared northeast through Martinsville, the south and east sides of metropolitan Indianapolis, Anderson, and finally lifted near Hartford City, 2 hours and 21 minutes later at 3:20 PM EST.

No deaths occurred, despite $156 million in property damage, 45 schools being impacted, and 130 injuries. The tornado was enshrouded in rain for much of its life.

The same thunderstorm that produced the long track tornado also produced other tornados. One was an F2 rated tornado that struck near Poseyville, and another was also rated F2 and struck near Monroe City.


    The Fujita Scale

F Scale Wind Damage
F0 40-72 MPH Light
F1 73-112 MPH Moderate
F2 113-157 MPH Considerable
F3 158-206 MPH Severe
F4 207-260 MPH Devastating
F5 261-318 MPH Incredible


 Damage Pictures

Click on a link below to see damage pictures from that area
Knox County
Beech Grove
Indianapolis East Side
Madison County
Delaware County


closeup of tracks

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