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Chicago, IL Natural Disasters and Weather Extremes

 
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The chance of earthquake damage in Chicago is about the same as Illinois average and is much lower than the national average. The risk of tornado damage in Chicago is lower than Illinois average and is much higher than the national average.

Topics:Earthquake IndexVolcano IndexTornado IndexOther Weather Extremes EventsVolcanos NearbyHistorical Earthquake EventsHistorical Tornado Events

Earthquake Index, #571

Chicago, IL
0.08
Illinois
0.24
U.S.
1.81

The earthquake index value is calculated based on historical earthquake events data using USA.com algorithms. It is an indicator of the earthquake level in a region. A higher earthquake index value means a higher chance of an earthquake.

Volcano Index, #1

Chicago, IL
0.0000
Illinois
0.0000
U.S.
0.0023

The volcano index value is calculated based on the currently known volcanoes using USA.com algorithms. It is an indicator of the possibility of a region being affected by a possible volcano eruption. A higher volcano index value means a higher chance of being affected.

Tornado Index, #908

Chicago, IL
208.29
Illinois
220.15
U.S.
136.45

The tornado index value is calculated based on historical tornado events data using USA.com algorithms. It is an indicator of the tornado level in a region. A higher tornado index value means a higher chance of tornado events.

Other Weather Extremes Events

A total of 3,688 other weather extremes events within 50 miles of Chicago, IL were recorded from 1950 to 2010. The following is a break down of these events:

TypeCountTypeCountTypeCountTypeCountTypeCount
Avalanche:0Blizzard:5Cold:46Dense Fog:27Drought:28
Dust Storm:0Flood:374Hail:996Heat:55Heavy Snow:46
High Surf:0Hurricane:0Ice Storm:12Landslide:0Strong Wind:54
Thunderstorm Winds:1,711Tropical Storm:0Wildfire:2Winter Storm:84Winter Weather:29
Other:219 

Volcanos Nearby

No volcano is found in or near Chicago, IL.

Historical Earthquake Events

No historical earthquake events that had recorded magnitudes of 3.5 or above found in or near Chicago, IL.

No historical earthquake events found in or near Chicago, IL.

Historical Tornado Events

A total of 87 historical tornado events that had recorded magnitude of 2 or above found in or near Chicago, IL.

Distance (miles)DateMagnitudeStart Lat/LogEnd Lat/LogLengthWidthFatalitiesInjuriesProperty DamageCrop DamageAffected County
7.51961-03-04241°54'N / 87°42'W41°59'N / 87°35'W7.90 Miles100 Yards111525.0M0Cook
9.51967-04-21441°40'N / 87°50'W41°44'N / 87°33'W15.00 Miles200 Yards3350025.0M0Cook
13.11976-03-12241°55'N / 87°55'W41°56'N / 87°54'W0252.5M0Du Page
13.81976-03-12241°56'N / 87°54'W42°06'N / 87°42'W15.10 Miles150 Yards2412.5M0Cook
15.01976-06-13441°42'N / 87°56'W41°44'N / 87°55'W00250K0Du Page
15.31959-09-26241°58'N / 87°58'W42°02'N / 87°48'W9.30 Miles33 Yards00250K0Du Page
15.51965-05-26241°59'N / 87°55'W42°00'N / 87°53'W00250K0Cook
15.81970-04-30242°00'N / 87°54'W42°03'N / 87°49'W4.90 Miles33 Yards0925K0Cook
16.01972-08-25242°02'N / 87°51'W1.80 Miles200 Yards012.5M0Cook
16.51962-06-23241°36'N / 87°43'W0.50 Mile100 Yards010250K0Cook
16.81991-03-27341°40'N / 88°01'W41°42'N / 87°51'W9.20 Miles200 Yards0725.0M0Cook
18.11976-06-13441°40'N / 88°00'W41°42'N / 87°56'W3.30 Miles1760 Yards2232.5M0Cook
18.31956-08-23241°35'N / 87°47'W03250K0Cook
19.51965-11-12241°34'N / 87°48'W41°34'N / 87°47'W0025.0M0Cook
19.81965-05-26241°54'N / 88°10'W41°59'N / 87°55'W13.80 Miles70 Yards011250K0Du Page
21.51973-04-21241°51'N / 88°06'W0.20 Mile33 Yards0025K0Cook
21.71965-11-12241°48'N / 88°06'W1.00 Mile20 Yards0025K0Du Page
22.21966-06-09242°06'N / 87°56'W2.50 Miles33 Yards1300K0Cook
22.41966-04-19241°49'N / 88°07'W0.50 Mile40 Yards00250K0Du Page
22.61991-03-27341°38'N / 88°04'W41°40'N / 88°01'W2.80 Miles200 Yards0025.0M0Will
22.71976-03-12341°43'N / 88°14'W41°51'N / 88°00'W14.80 Miles30 Yards032.5M0Du Page
22.91965-11-12341°33'N / 87°29'W41°34'N / 87°24'W4.10 Miles40 Yards014250K0Lake
23.31972-07-17241°52'N / 88°08'W002.5M0Du Page
23.31965-05-26241°30'N / 87°42'W1.00 Mile50 Yards0025K0Cook
23.61975-06-17242°05'N / 88°00'W1.50 Miles20 Yards00250K0Cook
24.31951-11-13241°36'N / 87°20'W0.30 Mile400 Yards00250K0Lake
24.52008-06-07241°28'N / 87°44'W41°30'N / 87°40'W4.00 Miles150 Yards004.0M0KCook
 Brief Description: EVENT NARRATIVE: A tornado which touched down in northwest Will County, crossed Steger Road into Cook County, just west of Cicero Avenue. The tornado hit a subdivision on the northwest corner of Steger Road and Cicero Avenue. Large tree limbs were blown down and a couple trees were uprooted. Homes were somewhat sheltered by large trees and only sustained minor damage. One home near Cicero Avenue had part of its roof torn off. East of Cicero Avenue, the tornado weakened slightly as it moved through an apartment complex. Only minor damage to roofs, soffits and siding was noted. The tornado hit another subdivision along Imperial Drive. A few homes had garages partially collapsed or destroyed. The tornado then passed through an open area before crossing Governors Highway and the Illinois Central tracks, just south of Sauk Trail. The tornado hit an apartment complex just east of the highway and railroad tracks. One three story building had much of the roof ripped off and part of the third floor exterior walls blown down. Carports were collapsed and other buildings had minor damage. The tornado was rated EF2 in this area. The tornado moved through the intersection of Sauk Trail and Richton Square Road where a grocery store and car wash sustained damage. The tornado then weakened to EF0 intensity as it continued northeast across Central Park Avenue and the northwest part of Central Park. Only minor damage to trees was observed in a subdivision in this area. The tornado crossed the E J and E tracks, then it damaged a roof at an apartment complex near North Street and Orchard Drive. The last signs of tree damage were just southwest of the intersection of Lincoln Highway and Western Avenue. Multiple eyewitnesses reported a dog that was picked up by the tornado and carried a few hundred feet away. The dog, a 125 pound Rottweiler, was apparently unharmed. EPISODE NARRATIVE: A single supercell thunderstorm developed over western Illinois and moved northeast reaching Lake Michigan near the Illinois Indiana state line several hours later. This single thunderstorm produced eight different tornadoes as it moved east across Illinois.
24.92008-08-04241°33'N / 87°25'W41°33'N / 87°22'W3.00 Miles30 Yards001.0M0KLake
 Brief Description: EVENT NARRATIVE: A tornado touched down just northeast of the Ridge Road and Cline Avenue intersection. Damage occurred at the Griffith Park Plaza Mall where windows were blown out of a row of stores and a portion of a roof was blown off of a vacant store. The damage path continued to the east, behind the mall. Two parked semi-trailers in the back of the mall were shifted eastward while a third was completely knocked over. The area to the east of this mall in the subdivision along and north of 37th Avenue near Lafayette Avenue and Rensselaer Avenue sustained some of the strongest wind damage from this tornado. Two houses on Lafayette Avenue had their roofs blown off with another house on Rensselaer Avenue also having its roof collapsed and a garage door pushed inward. Other significant damage that occurred was at the Habitat for Humanity storage building at Colfax and Ridge Road. Here, a cinder block storage building completely toppled to the ground. Although the building was knocked over, it appears as though the main cause of it faltering was due to a large tree that fell on top of it. At a nearby gas station within feet of this building, no damage occurred and people actually witnessed the tornado descend on the shelter. EPISODE NARRATIVE: A line of powerful thunderstorms moved across northwest Indiana during the evening hours of August 4th. These storms produced widespread and significant wind damage.
25.01966-06-09242°06'N / 88°01'W000K0Cook
26.01991-03-27341°35'N / 88°06'W41°38'N / 88°04'W3.00 Miles200 Yards0025.0M0Will
26.31971-08-24241°46'N / 88°11'W1.00 Mile83 Yards02250K0Du Page
26.61993-08-15241°31'N / 87°58'W0.30 Mile20 Yards00500K0Will
 Brief Description: A tornado touched down briefly in a New Lenox subdivision. On house was nearly destroyed. The roof was torn off and there was severe damage to one wall. Another home sustained minor damage and trees were damaged.
27.02008-06-07241°26'N / 87°46'W41°28'N / 87°44'W2.00 Miles150 Yards065.5M0KWill
 Brief Description: EVENT NARRATIVE: A tornado developed near Ridgeland Avenue and Dralle Road, where a high tension metal truss tower collapsed and four others were damaged. Power lines blocked Interstate 57. The tornado destroyed a mobile home and outbuildings east of Ridgeland between Dralle and Stuenkel Roads before crossing Interstate 57. The tornado was rated EF2 in this area. Six people were injured in vehicles on Interstate 57. Several cars were damaged and a semi trailer was completely destroyed. East of Interstate 57 at Stuenkel Road, a large warehouse had bay doors blown in, much of the roof collapsed, and the west wall blown in. Utility poles were pushed over along South Central Avenue. EPISODE NARRATIVE: A single supercell thunderstorm developed over western Illinois and moved northeast reaching Lake Michigan near the Illinois Indiana state line several hours later. This single thunderstorm produced eight different tornadoes as it moved east across Illinois.
27.01966-07-13241°30'N / 87°25'W0025K0Lake
28.51962-07-20241°32'N / 87°25'W41°35'N / 87°08'W14.90 Miles33 Yards0025K0Lake
28.81965-11-12241°27'N / 88°15'W41°34'N / 87°48'W24.50 Miles120 Yards29025.0M0Will
30.42008-06-07241°24'N / 87°51'W41°25'N / 87°47'W4.00 Miles150 Yards00500K0KWill
 Brief Description: EVENT NARRATIVE: A tornado touched down along Paulding Road just west of Center Road, south of the Green Garden Country Club. A garage was leveled and a house had part of its roof torn off and damage to the second story exterior walls. At the southwest corner of Bruns and 88th Avenue, barns and trees were damaged. The tornado continued along Bruns Road between 80th and 88th Avenues. On the south side of Bruns Road, a barn and an outbuilding were completely destroyed. The house lost a large section of the southeast wall on the second floor. Another house was heavily damaged with siding and a west wall blown off. North of Bruns Road, there was a barn that was practically destroyed with only a partial wall standing. A horse barn was destroyed with the stables intact and horses still standing in them. In the backyard of the next home, there were trees blown down and debris, such as trailers and a small rowboat were blown into the creek immediately north of Bruns Road. A chain link fence was pulled from the ground. Many trees were uprooted and blown over. Power lines were also blown down. The next house had damage to two garages. The doors were blown out of both garages and the roof of one garage was severely damaged. The house had siding and roof shingles blown off. A house at the east end of this section on Bruns Road, closest to 80th Avenue, had siding blown off and chimney damage. The tornado ended southwest of the intersection of Harlem Avenue and Manhattan-Monee Road, where there was minor tree damage. EPISODE NARRATIVE: A single supercell thunderstorm developed over western Illinois and moved northeast reaching Lake Michigan near the Illinois Indiana state line several hours later. This single thunderstorm produced eight different tornadoes as it moved east across Illinois.
30.61954-05-27241°46'N / 88°20'W41°51'N / 88°13'W7.90 Miles200 Yards0025K0Kendall
30.61972-04-06241°32'N / 88°12'W41°34'N / 88°04'W6.80 Miles50 Yards122250K0Will
31.11967-10-24341°33'N / 87°13'W0025K0Porter
31.21990-08-28541°38'N / 88°15'W41°31'N / 88°06'W11.20 Miles600 Yards29350250.0M0Will
31.41972-04-06241°31'N / 88°11'W41°33'N / 88°05'W5.10 Miles50 Yards00250K0Will
32.11984-04-27341°35'N / 88°15'W41°37'N / 88°11'W4.00 Miles200 Yards152.5M0Will
32.51977-06-30241°31'N / 87°16'W41°33'N / 87°08'W6.80 Miles300 Yards012.5M0Lake
32.91967-04-21242°00'N / 88°17'W0.30 Mile33 Yards00250K0Kane
33.41976-03-12341°38'N / 88°21'W41°43'N / 88°14'W7.80 Miles30 Yards002.5M0Kendall
33.61957-07-12241°23'N / 87°27'W00250K0Lake
33.71956-08-23242°02'N / 88°17'W0025K0Kane
34.01976-03-12241°29'N / 87°13'W41°32'N / 87°10'W3.30 Miles33 Yards003K0Porter
34.21990-08-28541°41'N / 88°21'W41°38'N / 88°15'W5.20 Miles600 Yards00250K0Kendall
34.21976-03-12241°27'N / 87°16'W41°29'N / 87°13'W2.30 Miles200 Yards003K0Lake
34.71972-09-28442°17'N / 87°52'W42°22'N / 87°50'W5.20 Miles220 Yards0202.5M0Lake
35.02008-06-07241°21'N / 87°55'W41°22'N / 87°53'W2.00 Miles400 Yards0050K0KWill
 Brief Description: EVENT NARRATIVE: A tornado touched down northeast of Wilton Center, just north of Route 52 and east of Elevator Road, where there was minor tree damage. Based on photos and eyewitness reports, the tornado grew to about 400 yards wide but remained in open fields with few structures or trees in its path. At 120th Avenue, a garage was destroyed and all that remained was a cinder block base. A metal outbuilding was severely damaged. The tornado ended near Manhattan-Wilton Road, just west of Route 45. EPISODE NARRATIVE: A single supercell thunderstorm developed over western Illinois and moved northeast reaching Lake Michigan near the Illinois Indiana state line several hours later. This single thunderstorm produced eight different tornadoes as it moved east across Illinois.
35.11967-04-21442°12'N / 88°12'W42°13'N / 88°06'W4.50 Miles150 Yards1972.5M0Lake
36.01958-08-06241°44'N / 88°22'W2.00 Miles70 Yards00250K0Kane
36.02010-10-26241°18'N / 87°44'W41°20'N / 87°43'W2.00 Miles200 Yards02500K0KWill
 Brief Description: EVENT NARRATIVE: A tornado touched down about 4 miles east of Peotone. The tornado produced its most intense damage along South Will Center Road, about halfway between Corning Road and Peotone-Beacher Road, removing a house's roof, collapsing exterior walls on the second floor of the house, and completely destroying a garage and three other outbuildings. Two teenage boys were injured in the house. Four power poles were also downed just northeast of the area along Peotone-Beecher Road. Additional EF1 and EF0 damage was found along a path running southwest toward Kennedy Road. This damage consisted of collapsed outbuildings, snapped cedar trees, and damage to homes. One home on Corning Road was pushed off its foundation and the chimney collapsed. EPISODE NARRATIVE: A line of strong to severe thunderstorms moved across northern Illinois during the morning hours of October 26th. Three tornadoes were reported along with damaging winds.
36.11961-04-23341°21'N / 88°13'W41°19'N / 87°31'W36.30 Miles33 Yards042.5M0Will
36.12009-08-19241°36'N / 87°04'W41°39'N / 87°01'W4.00 Miles60 Yards001.5M0KPorter
 Brief Description: EVENT NARRATIVE: A tornado touched down in southern Chesterton east of 11th Street and southwest of South Park Drive. The tornado quickly intensified as it moved to the northeast and caused the partial collapse of a gymnasium roof at the Chesterton Junior High School. A wind gust to 105 mph was measured by an anemometer near the school. This damage along with numerous trees that were either uprooted or sheared off was caused by tornado winds reaching 110 mph. The tornado was rated EF1 at this point with a path width of 40 yards. The tornado continued to track to the northeast across the New York Central railroad tracks toward Grant Avenue where the roof of a warehouse had been peeled off and thrown about 15 yards behind the building to the north. The tornado continued to the northeast where an apartment building on Brown Avenue lost its entire roof. This damage was caused by tornado winds reaching 120 mph. The tornado damage was rated EF2 through this area with a path width of 60 yards. In the city of Chesterton, 211 structures sustained damage; 8 were completely destroyed; 54 suffered major damage, such as trees falling through roofs. The remaining 149 structures sustained damage such as missing shingles or damaged gutters. Multiple vehicles were damaged by falling debris from buildings or trees. Numerous power lines were blown down along with utility poles blown down or snapped. This EF2 damage continued northeast where an entire field of healthy old hardwood tree trunks were snapped off or uprooted. The tornado then started to slightly weaken as it approached the Interstate 94 eastbound exit/westbound entrance ramps at Indiana Highway 49. A home south of the interstate had a garage roof blown off with still numerous trees uprooted or sheared off. Tornado wind speeds here were estimated at 100 mph with an EF1 rating. Similar tree damage was noted along a path that continued to go to the northeast across Highway 49 and toward Highway 20 near Hadenfelt Road where some aluminum roofing material of a storage facility had been peeled off. Tornado wind speeds were estimated at 95 mph here and was rated EF1 with a path width of 30 yards. The tornado continued to move through a heavily forested area in the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, eventually crossing Highway 12. Radar imagery and an aerial survey suggests that the tornado dissipated north of Highway 12. EPISODE NARRATIVE: Strong to severe thunderstorms moved across parts of northwest Indiana during the late afternoon and evening hours of August 19th, producing one tornado in Chesterton.
36.41988-04-05241°16'N / 88°09'W41°30'N / 87°56'W23.00 Miles50 Yards000K0Will
36.61984-04-27341°33'N / 88°20'W41°35'N / 88°15'W5.00 Miles200 Yards002.5M0Kendall
36.71967-04-21442°09'N / 88°16'W42°12'N / 88°12'W4.30 Miles150 Yards032.5M0Mchenry
39.01976-03-12341°42'N / 86°58'W41°41'N / 86°56'W00250K0Porter
39.91965-04-11242°23'N / 88°01'W42°22'N / 87°55'W4.50 Miles200 Yards00250K0Lake
40.41974-06-20341°17'N / 87°25'W41°19'N / 87°20'W4.50 Miles150 Yards05250K0Lake
40.71965-04-11442°17'N / 88°13'W42°17'N / 88°11'W000K0Lake
41.11997-05-18242°25'N / 88°03'W42°22'N / 87°54'W6.00 Miles75 Yards0000Lake
 Brief Description: A tornado touched down on the southeast side of Lindenhurst and damaged trees and the roofs of several homes. The tornado reached F2 intensity near Sand Lake Road and Route 45 where 2 barns were destroyed, two foot diameter oak trees were broken off or uprooted and the roof was taken off a nursery. Signs were blown down along Sand Lake Road and Stearns School Road. A subdivision on the north side of Gurnee had damage to trees, a chimney blown off a house, windows broken, walls damaged, a garage door blown in and a fence blown down. Three quater inch hail also occurred in Lindenhurst.
41.81954-06-01241°15'N / 87°29'W0025K0Lake
42.01958-05-31241°43'N / 86°53'W00250K0La Porte
42.31958-10-09242°24'N / 88°12'W42°23'N / 87°52'W16.70 Miles33 Yards002.5M0Lake
42.51978-08-15242°11'N / 88°22'W2.00 Miles100 Yards00250K0Mchenry
42.61965-04-11442°13'N / 88°23'W42°17'N / 88°13'W9.10 Miles400 Yards6750K0Mchenry
43.01976-04-20242°27'N / 87°50'W0.80 Mile50 Yards0225K0Lake
43.01996-04-19242°27'N / 87°50'W42°27'N / 87°50'W2.00 Miles100 Yards026.6M0Lake
 Brief Description: The roof was torn off an apartment building. Over 400 homes and businesses sustained damage and 32 received major damage. Five trucks were overturned at a plant. Homes and garages had roof damage. Numerous trees were damaged or blown down. Injuries included a child with a broken leg and a woman cut by glass.
43.91961-04-23341°19'N / 87°31'W41°09'N / 87°19'W15.40 Miles33 Yards0025K0Lake
44.41959-10-08242°20'N / 88°14'W2.00 Miles90 Yards01250K0Mchenry
44.92008-06-07241°12'N / 88°12'W41°20'N / 88°00'W14.00 Miles200 Yards00500K0KWill
 Brief Description: EVENT NARRATIVE: A tornado touched down in far northwest Kankakee County then crossed County Line Road into Will County north of Essex. Tree tops were sheared off at Essex and Cooper Roads. A clear path could be seen in the trees at McGuire Road. At Route 113 and Smiley Road near Custer Park, trees were snapped and uprooted. Across the Kankakee River, a two story house had its roof completely removed and there was extensive tree damage. The tornado reached EF2 intensity at this point. The tornado continued across Route 102 near Ritchie where trees were damaged. The tornado crossed old Chicago Road near Kahler Road where power lines were blown down, a shed and barn were damaged and there was minor damage to a house. Another shed was destroyed. The tornado weakened as it moved from Symerton and Kennedy Roads to Warner Bridge and Arsenal Roads. There was no damage except to one tree. There was minor damage to a barn and tree limbs north of Arsenal Road before the tornado dissipated. EPISODE NARRATIVE: A single supercell thunderstorm developed over western Illinois and moved northeast reaching Lake Michigan near the Illinois Indiana state line several hours later. This single thunderstorm produced eight different tornadoes as it moved east across Illinois.
45.01963-04-19242°18'N / 88°18'W00250K0Mchenry
45.11965-11-12241°24'N / 88°28'W41°27'N / 88°15'W11.40 Miles120 Yards0025.0M0Grundy
45.31965-04-11341°21'N / 87°12'W41°24'N / 86°55'W14.80 Miles33 Yards0025.0M0Porter
46.41976-03-12341°41'N / 86°56'W41°37'N / 86°42'W12.60 Miles200 Yards07250K0La Porte
47.81980-07-16242°07'N / 88°32'W1.40 Miles440 Yards00250K0Kane
47.81963-04-17441°11'N / 88°06'W41°08'N / 87°37'W25.20 Miles130 Yards1502.5M0Kankakee
49.01973-04-19241°18'N / 88°18'W00250K0Grundy
49.01976-03-12341°10'N / 87°17'W41°15'N / 87°12'W6.60 Miles250 Yards18250K0Jasper
49.71950-01-25241°10'N / 87°20'W00250K0Kankakee
50.01976-03-12341°15'N / 87°12'W41°15'N / 87°02'W8.00 Miles250 Yards000K0Jasper
50.01962-04-30341°18'N / 87°02'W003K0Porter


* The information on this page is based on the global volcano database, the U.S. earthquake database of 1638-1985, and the U.S. Tornado and Weather Extremes database of 1950-2010.


 
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