Oklahoma tornado damage before-and-after satellite images via Google (video)

Google put together a fascinating Web site where you can check out the Moore, Oklahoma tornado damage with before and after shots, using Google Maps.

I’ve done a video, below, walking you through the map and the damage at various locations like Briarwood Elementary and the hospital.  But I’ve also captured some images of the before and after at various locations.

Here’s an animated gif of the damage at Briarwood Elementary School, the school that was the focus of so much attention during the storm coverage:

Briarwood Elementary

Briarwood Elementary

And here are a few more images from Google – my video walk-through of the Google map is below.

First, you have the overall path of the tornado, moving from southwest to northeast.  The markers are damage areas.


Now we’ve zoomed in some, and you can see the tornado’s path scorched on the earth, I’ve highlighted the general path of the tornado in red:


In this further zoom, you can see Briarwood Elementary School circled in red – this is clearly the before shot:


In this after shot, you can see the school and the surrounding neighborhood destroyed:


An even closer zoom of Briarwood Elementary and the surrounding neighborhood, before:


Even closer zoom, after:


And here is my video walking you through the Google Map, showing you a few other points of interesting:

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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12 Responses to “Oklahoma tornado damage before-and-after satellite images via Google (video)”

  1. thesparky1 says:

    First of all, most of the neighborhoods were of homes in the $50 to 100k demo. Next, Oklahoma committed $45M in funds immediately to relief thanks to having more than a billion in a reserve fund. Senators who wanted to give money to the Sandy victims wanted to do so with offset cuts in spending. The sequester helped make that happen and you know that an Obama staffer is the one who suggested the sequester but he did so as a way to punish Republicans. Next, how about the Loma Linda earthquake that caused nearly a trillion dollars of damage to the San Francisco area? Did people from Oklahoma scoff at those wealthy, arrogant, conceited, residents of a modern day land of Gammorah and not care? No, we sent tons of relief right away and then followed up with armies of relief workers who stayed months to help them get back on their feet. When 9/11 happened did we laugh at NYC and D.C.? No, we launched one of the only non-government flights on 9/12 that had the sky to itself and was filled with workers requested by NYFD. How about NOLA and Katrina? We were only outnumbered in national guardsmen when our teams arrived to set up relief efforts. How about Indonesia tsunami? We sent medical and water teams that very day when it was still very dangerous to be there. We sent teams into Myanmar when they were allowing no foreign intervention. We went in as friends of the Myanmar government because they knew we would go in and help people and not try political tricks. Anyone remember or think of Haiti? We still have teams there working on long term solutions to housing and medical needs. And what about Sandy and relief efforts? Oklahoma still has teams doing mudout work. Yes, we have numerous teams going into people’s homes where all they really need is to get the moldy sheet rock out and cleaned up so they can start rebuilding.

  2. jadezakozyl says:

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  3. mark_in_toronto says:

    Yes . . . this is tragic, but how will it effect you and your children?. . . . NADA.

    If you spent one-tenth of this energy following things that REALLY matter instead of following murder trials and tornados, you just might learn something . . . like how your elected officials in DC are making disasters like this much worse for everyone.
    You’re just asking for it.

  4. BeccaM says:

    By referring to ‘several accounts’ I wasn’t pulling that assertion that most of the people in Moore didn’t have shelters out of my ass.

    “The city of Moore has no public storm shelters.”


    “About 20 percent of homes in Oklahoma already have storm shelters of some sort.”


    20% is one hell of a long way from “most.”

    The earth itself was at least partially to blame for why desperate schoolchildren in Moore, Okla., had nowhere to hide from Monday’s devastating tornado.

    Much of the soil in Oklahoma, including Moore, is red clay — a porous substance that makes foundations settle and basements and underground tornado shelters leak. “That’s the reason we don’t have basements,” said Tom Bennett of Tulsa, past president of the National Storm Shelter Association. In greater Oklahoma City, which includes Moore, only 3.5 percent of homes have basements, according to Reuters.


    Despite the construction and subsidies, Bennett estimated that less than a fifth of the state’s 4 million residents have access to meaningful private shelter from tornadoes. In Moore, according to the New York Times, only about 10 percent of homes have (storm shelters).


    (emphasis in the above was added)

    In closing, I’d like to know how you can take ANYTHING I’ve written in this thread as being negative or attacking towards the people of Moore or OK.

  5. PinkRanger says:

    That’s not a true statement. If most people didn’t have storm shelters, a lot more than 24 would be dead. I lived through the ’99 tornado in Oklahoma when the highest wind speeds ever to be recorded on the surface of the earth happened. That was when few people had shelters and it greatly changed the mindset in regards to shelters being a priority. I lived in Oklahoma for more than 22 years before moving away to Los Angeles–I’d move back but my career and such keep me from being able to do so yet. However, I’m not really here to bug you about that. I’m here to address the individuals higher in the thread who are morally superior and more deserving of being treating with kindness because of the ballots they cast.

    I’ve never agreed with Oklahoma politics, but other than that, it’s a lot of good hearted, down to earth, hard working people who would give a complete stranger a place to sleep or the shirt off of their back. That’s why I want to move back even though I’m not a fan of Bible Thumpers (though I’m a Christian) or the extreme right wing political climate (I’m definitely a liberal). This area of Oklahoma is full of people who make an honest living and many who have built good lives and families up from nothing.

    My friends’ family members were killed in tornadoes when I was a teenager. I grew up in the Moore and south OKC area. I’ve known the terror of 300mph winds reaching your house and everything you hold dear. I’ve seen family members and friends’ lives obliterated. As a result of this one tornado, I can’t even fit on 10 fingers the number of people I know *personally* that no longer have a home. I had to rush home and call my best friend to make sure she was still alive because her house was hit. To wish this sort of terror and grief on anyone because of their political convictions especially when there are a lot of people affected that don’t hold the mindset of the majority, speaks volumes about the character of a person. It is also the antithesis of how someone from my home would react if the tables were turned. I know this because after the Boston bombing, Oklahomans didn’t “jump to” and say that Boston shouldn’t be helped because they are liberal baby killers–and I can damn well assure you that a large portion of Oklahomans don’t agree with the political views of the Northeast because a lot don’t agree with me. Oklahoman’s said, “How can we help? Our marathon is this very week. We know this pain, we’ve been through a terrorist attack, and these are people that need help–HUMAN BEINGS.”

    I hope that nothing similar ever happens to any of you who were negative about these HUMAN BEINGS that have not only lost their city, but their memories, loved ones, and basic human needs. I hope you never have to see life from their perspective, and then have insult added to injury when people deem you unworthy of basic human decency because you hold a differing political conviction. I might think you’re a jerk because of the things you said, but I wouldn’t leave you wounded on the side of the road because it’s not how I was raised and it’s not the right thing to do. There are a LOT of people like me from that place. . .they made me who I am. You can spew your bile all you like, but honestly, you’re wasting your breath because the majority of US citizens are better than you and have good hearts. Especially those Oklahomies of mine whose spirits you couldn’t begin to crush–after all, a more than mile wide tower of destruction couldn’t even do that.

  6. John Sinkiewicz says:

    I did a quick search with Trulia, and it seems like many of the homes in that area were in foreclosure. So they weren’t doing so good already.

  7. SkippyFlipjack says:

    I read an article on a site the other day which makes a similar case for no aid: http://dangerousminds.net/comments/how_about_no_aid_for_oklahoma — their congressional reps are jerks, they voted for Romney and why would they live in Tornadoland anyway (other than, y’know, most of them were probably born and raised there.) Douchey arguments, I think — we have lots of reasons for supporting the candidates we support and living where we live, and in times of crisis we forget the little things and just do what’s right.

  8. perljammer says:

    Wow. You sound pretty bitter there, buddy.

  9. BeccaM says:

    Thanks. By several accounts, most of these people didn’t have storm shelters, nor was their school built to include a tornado-safe hardened area, because they couldn’t afford such. Particularly after their town had been nearly destroyed back in ’99 by that other tornado.

  10. Like Becca said. A) We don’t wish death on anyone (short of Hitler), B) From what I read, these were blue collar neighborhoods.

  11. BeccaM says:

    Wishing harm on people is seriously classless. However you might feel about their voting choices, these weren’t wealthy people and a lot of ’em lost nearly everything they own. Some lost family members.

    Have a heart already.

  12. GoodOnesTwice says:

    Rich neighborhood; good riddance. These folks voted for the likes of Coburn and Inhofe, who didn’t want to give a DIME to those who lost everything to Hurricane Sandy; I SAY LET THEM EAT CAKE.

    Too bad we can’t get these things to target the big tax-dodgers like Tim Cook and his ilk. Would CHEER to see lazy, amoral people like him who live off of Other People’s Labor (OPL) and Other People’s Money (OPM) LOSE EVERYTHING THEY OWN.

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