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Why So Many Tornadoes in Tornado Alley?

Tornado watches on the rise in your area? You’re not alone. Across the U.S., tornado outbreaks are increasing in number due to unseasonably warm weather. And among the worse effected: Tornado Alley: The strip of Great Plains states running from Kansas to Texas.  

The Science Behind Tornado Alley

Tornadoes can – and do – form anywhere. In fact, about 1,200 hit the U.S. annually. However certain conditions aid their formation - conditions which exist in Tornado Alley:

  • Flat, dry terrain
    Tornadoes are more easily formed in regions with flat, dry terrain.
  • Atmospheric instability
    Think the battle of the opposites: In the Great Plains region, warm moist air from the Gulf battles with cool, dry Rocky Mountain winds. They meet, and science takes over…
  • Competing air masses
    When the competing masses meet, warm air rises and cool air sinks, creating a supercell, a very violent storm. If the two clashing air masses have different speeds, a funnel cloud is formed. When that cloud touches the ground it is classified as a tornado.

How many regions in the U.S. are effected?

The following regions are no stranger to a tornado watch. When is your tornado season?

  • Southern Plains (May to June)
  • Gulf Coast (Spring)
  • Northern Plains & Upper Midwest (June or July) 

Is your home prepared for severe weather?

Prepare your home and family for the event of a tornado watch or warning:

  • Be on the lookout.
    Be vigilant about approaching storms, watching closely for tornado signs: Dark skies, large hail, low-flying, fast moving clouds, and roaring sounds.
  • Tune-in.
    Listen to TV or radio news, or your NOAA weather radio for official instructions.
  • Recognize alerts.
    A tornado watch means a tornado is possible. A tornado warning means a tornado has been spotted.
  • Take shelter.
    In the event of a warning, immediately seek shelter in a storm cellar, basement, or interior room.

Storm damage following a tornado watch? The caring professionals at Rainbow International® can help you put the pieces back together. Contact us today.

 

For Further Reading:

Most Common Tornado Damage

Mold Symptoms: Is Mold Making Me Sick?

Spring Cleaning: Those Hidden Dirty Areas