Today is the Anniversary of the Owensboro Tornados

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Today is the 20th anniversary of violent tornadoes that hit western Kentucky. On January 3, 2000, two strong tornadoes struck causing injuries and destroying homes and businesses.

According to the National Weather Service in Paducah, a pair of F-3 tornadoes hit northwest Kentucky late in the afternoon. Owensboro suffered the most severe damage and had the most injuries.  

Rick Shanklin, NWS Paducah

  • 100 homes destroyed
  • 700 homes damaged
  • 2,000 homes with minor damage
  • 18 people injured

The second tornado, also an F-3 hit between Paducah and Owensboro in Crittenden and Webster counties. This tornado touched down around 3 p.m., Owensboro was hit just after 4 p.m. CST. The Crittenden/Webster tornado was about 15 miles long and tore through Crayne and Diamond. There was severe damage in both areas as well with 100 homes damaged or destroyed. 


Since the area isn’t heavily populated there were only a handful of injuries.