NORMAN, Oklahoma — The tornado that struck the town of El Reno, Okla., last Friday was 2.6 miles wide, according to the National Weather Service.
The tornado was originally estimated as an EF-3 as a preliminary. But the weather service announced today it had upgraded the storm to an EF-5 — the most powerful level of a tornado with winds of more than 200 mph.
At 2.6 miles wide, it is the widest tornado in the United States on record. The storm is blamed for 18 deaths. The El Reno tornado was twice as wide as the tornado that struck the Oklahoma City suburb of Moore on May 20 and killed 23 people.
The El Reno tornado was on the ground for 16.3 miles, the weather service said. El Reno is about 25 miles west of Oklahoma City.
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Updated today, June 4, 2013, at 12:21 p.m. with image from National Weather Service.
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