Today marks 30 years since rare November F4 tornado touched down in Raleigh

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Wednesday is a somber anniversary marking 30 years since the Raleigh F4 touched down.

Wednesday is a somber anniversary marking 30 years since the Raleigh F4 touched down.

The tornado touched down around 1 a.m. on Nov. 28, 1988, taking many by surprise. The twister claimed four lives including two children. It also left 157 people injured.

The twister stayed on the ground for a total of 84 miles. It initially touched down in Wake County at Umstead State Park, where it reached its maximum intensity producing F4 damage.

This twister hit a highly populated area in the middle of the night causing many injuries. The twister damaged many homes and businesses in Raleigh including a large K-MART

After crossing through Wake County, the tornado stayed on the ground for almost two hours, and finally lifted up in Northampton County just northeast of Roanoke Rapids.

In total, the Raleigh F4 destroyed 425 homes and 78 businesses.

The strength, and the time of year this twister hit were both rare.

Tornadoes have and can happen in November, but our peak season is in the Spring.

On this day back in 1988, the weather was unseasonably warm with a very strong jet stream. That combination produced a cluster of storms that spawned this deadly tornado.
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weathertornadoweatherwind damageRaleigh
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