HOUSTON -- The staggering loss of life and astonishing pictures from Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia underscore the tragedy of the tornado outbreak this week.
Storms have been erupting since Sunday through Texas, but a key atmospheric ingredient came together Wednesday to trigger the massive outbreak.
Here's a link to a site which shows the storm reports from Wednesday, including the remarkable 180 tornado reports: www.spc.noaa.gov/climo/reports/110427_rpts.html. You can scroll backward or forward to see reports from other days at the top of that page.
Watch the video to see why the storms were so strong and why they lasted so long.