Pittsfield, MA F0 Tornado of August 20, 2004

Berkshire County

Figure 1 depicts the surface observations at 5:00 pm EDT, which shows a stationary front across the northeastern United States and an area of low pressure sitting just north of Massachusetts. This area of low pressure and interactions with the stationary front caused thunderstorms to develop in the afternoon hours of August 20th across western Massachusetts, which ultimately led to this tornado.

Figure 1. Surface analysis at 21Z on August 20, 2004 showing mean sea-level pressure (MSLP) contours, surface observations, fronts and pressure centres (WPC, 2017)

The Pittsfield, MA F0 tornado of August 20, 2004 impacted Berkshire County in Massachusetts. According to NOAA (2019), the F0 tornado caused no fatalities or injuries, but caused $25 thousand dollars in property damage. The tornado touched down near Fenn Street at 6:37 pm EDT. The tornado travelled for 1 mile and had a maximum width of 150 yards.

Figure 2. Episode narrative for August 20, 2004 (NOAA NCEI, 2020).


NWS Weather Prediction Center Surface Analysis Archive. (2017). Surface analysis 21Z Fri Aug 20 2004. Retrieved from: https://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/archives/web_pages/sfc/sfc_archive.php

NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information (2020). Storm Events Database. Retrieved from: https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/stormevents/