The storm that swept through the area south and east of Atkins, Arkansas, was initially rated as an EF3 tornado. After surveying the damage, the National Weather Service has upgraded it to EF4 and stated that a single tornado may have tracked from south of Atkins through Clinton, Mountain View and Highland. An aerial survey is planned for today to determine if it was one or several tornados.
An EF4 has winds of between 166-200 mph, with devastating damage that can level newer houses and create “missiles” such as thrown cars or telephone poles.
Unfortunately, in the aftermath of the storm, cleanup efforts have been hampered by traffic of gawkers driving through to see the damage first hand. If they don’t have a need to go through the area, they should stay away.