There are controversy over on how wide this tornado was but if I were to estimate I would say around a mile-wide. Grazulis has it as 1500 yards wide and others have it as a mile to a mile and a half wide.
Besides this tornado and the Camp Crook tornado there are two other tornadoes that I know of that granulated vehicles and farm equipment and those were Jarrell, Texas on May 27, 1997 and the Chapman/Solomon tornado on May 25, 2016. The Chapman/Solomon tornado ripped up CWR railroad tracks.Yeah, I've got the Storm Data photos and a few really poor quality newspaper scans. The ones Dean has are high-quality color photos. He posted a couple of them to his website years ago, but it seems they're inaccessible now even with the Wayback Machine. Storm Data does list the names of some of the people who supplied photos, so some day I may see if I can track some of them down.
I checked my archives and I actually do have two color photos:
Edit: Didn't see your second post - nice find! I was hopeful maybe the linked NWS page would have more photos but it's gone now and there don't seem to be any archived copies of it. Bummer. Might contact Goodland and see if they've still got anything, though.
Here is the survey from the Camp Crook tornado on June 28, 2018. If you also read further a large farm outbuilding was destroyed and it foundation was violently ripped from the ground. While that is not a really strong structure but the foundation being ripped out of the ground sounds quite impressive. Though it also could have been a weak foundation. https://www.weather.gov/unr/2018-06-28Yeah I don't doubt Chapman was EF5 strength at some point (and I think the surveyors said as much)
The idea that Tuscaloosa may have reached EF5 intensity at some point is hardly news, obviously, but I thought it was noteworthy that the area of probable EF5 intensity using this method more or less coincides with the prevailing opinion. This area includes, among other things, the steel train trestle over Hurricane Creek Canyon and the coalyard where coal cars were thrown up to ~400 feet. This approach of using treefall patterns as a proxy for intensity seems to be pretty sound, so it's worth consideration I think. The study also suggests that max intensity coincided with clear RFD internal surges, which has been documented in several other tornadoes and is backed up in this case by both treefall damage patterns and radar data.Nevertheless, the best-fit vortex is shown with Rmax = 200 m (estimated from aerial photography), Vtan = 36 m s−1, Vr = 76 m s−1, and peak winds near 99 m s−1. The results suggest that the tornado was of EF5 intensity during this stage of its life, despite the EF4 rating assigned by the NWS. The EF4 rating may be attributable to a lack of EF-scale damage indicators in this section of the track, as shown in Fig. 3c. Of interest is that the tornado destroyed a railroad bridge during this period, as noted in Fig. 3c, implying very high wind speeds, but this indicator could not be used in the NWS assessment (K. Laws, NWS Birmingham, 2012, personal communication). Again, strong radial near-surface winds were needed to produce the best-fit tree-fall pattern.
That is a nice way of putting it.Yeah, I think any and all credible data should be considered. The ultimate goal is to better understand climatology and get a more accurate picture of when and where tornadoes happen and how intense they are. As it currently is, the EF-scale probably tells us more about population density and construction practices than maximum tornado intensity. It'll always be a tough thing to navigate, but I don't know that there's much of a downside to using all possible tools at our disposal (provided they're quality-controlled and reflective of near-surface tornado intensity).