Tornadoes are one of mother nature’s most violent storms. Tornadoes are generally spawned from significant (aka powerful) thunderstorms.
It’s without a shadow of a doubt, Tornadoes can cause fatalities and destroy a neighbourhood within seconds.
The winds of a Tornado can reach up to three hundred miles per hour. It has been proven that a Tornado’s damage path can be in excess of one mile wide and fifty miles long.
Downburst (aka straight-line) winds also tend to occur during the same thunderstorm. Hail is also very commonly found close to Tornadoes.
“The strongest thunderstorms that spawn tornadoes are formed under the atmospheric conditions that are also highly likely to make hail.”National Weather Service, NOAA – https://www.weather.gov/phi/TornadoDefinition
Tornadoes can be clearly visible in most cases, however rain or low-hanging clouds can obscure others.
The development of a Tornado can be extremely quick, however they may dissipate just as quickly.
It’s a common fact that most Tornadoes can be on the ground for less than 15 minutes. However, according to Roger Edwards (The Tornado FAQ):
“Tornadoes can last from several seconds to more than an hour. Most tornadoes last less than 10 minutes.”Roger Edwards, Storm Prediction Center, NOAA – https://www.spc.noaa.gov/faq/tornado/
Before a Tornado strikes, the wind may die down and the air may become very still. The debris cloud can mark the location of a Tornado even if a funnel cloud is not visible.
Tornadoes tend to occur near the trailing edge of a thunderstorm. It is not uncommon however to see clear skies behind a Tornado.
External Tornado websites
- Tornado [Wikipedia]
- Tornado Facts and Information [National Geographic]
- Tornadoes [Ready.gov]
- Tornado Talk
- U.S. Tornadoes
More external links coming soon – stay tuned!