FACT CHECK: Does This Image Show A Tornado In Grand Island, Nebraska?

Trevor Schakohl | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows a recent tornado in Grand Island, Nebraska.

Verdict: False

The photo does not show a recent tornado in Grand Island. It’s a stock photo that has been online since at least 2012.

Fact Check:

Nine tornadoes hit south-central Nebraska on Dec. 15, according to the National Weather Service (NSW). Grand Island experienced 85 mile-per-hour storm wind and a record-high 69-degree that day, local NBC affiliate KSNB-TV reported.

The picture in the Dec. 15 Facebook post shows what appears to be a tornado landing on a road while lightning strikes on the side. The post’s caption reads, “This was at Grand Island.” (RELATED: Viral Image Claims To Show Multiple Tornadoes Simultaneously Ripping Through Kansas)

The photo does not, however, show a scene from Nebraska’s recent extreme weather. Through a reverse image search, Check Your Fact found that the picture has been circulating online since at least 2012, when it was shared in a blog post. UK-based photographer, illustrator and vector artist Solarseven seems to have produced the image, publishing it on many stock material websites.

The large storm causing the recent Nebraska tornadoes impacted many other nearby states, with severe weather being reported in places from the Great Lakes to the southern Rocky Mountains, according to the Weather Channel.

Grand Island has seen notable tornado activity in the past. On the evening of June 3, 1980, seven tornadoes occurred in or close to the city, according to the NWS’ Weather Forecast Office in Hastings, Nebraska. The office called this “arguably an unparalleled event in meteorological history.”

Trevor Schakohl

Fact Check Reporter
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