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5 Interesting Facts About Tornadoes

Written by Sean Smith

Since April is “Tornado Awareness Month,” there are some interesting facts about tornadoes documented by Interesting Engineering. Tornadoes are very destructive forces of nature, so learning more about them can help us to be more knowledgeable and prepared.


  1. Prediction Is Possible but Quick

The National Weather Service always wants people to be prepared for tornadoes, so it makes sense that the earlier the warning is, the better that will be. The average time to warn people of a tornado is 13 minutes. That may not seem like a lot of time, but it is at least enough time for most people to find shelter. So when you hear the siren, get to shelter.


  1. Deadliest Tornado in the U.S.

The deadliest tornado in the U.S. was on March 18, 1925, and hit Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana. There were 625 people killed (Missouri-11, Illinois-613, Indiana-71).  It’s average speed was 110 mph and it was approximately 202 miles long.


  1. North America Most Likely for Tornadoes

Tornadoes can happen anywhere in the world, but North America experiences them the most. North America has “a major north-south mountain range…and the Gulf of Mexico…all in a latitude range frequented by strong upper-level jet streams amounts to something of a ‘perfect storm’ for severe (supercell-type) thunderstorm formation.” The area of land between Texas and North Dakota is most susceptible to tornadoes and is called “Tornado Alley.”


  1. Deadliest Tornado in History

The deadliest tornado in history was on April 26, 1989, in Manikganj, Bangladesh. Even though this tornado was 10 miles long, it killed approximately 1,300 people and left approximately 12,000 people with minor to life-threatening injuries. This tornado also left 80,000 people without any place to live.


  1. Tornadoes Can Strike at Night

There are many people who believe that tornadoes only happen during the day, but this is a myth. The truth is that night tornadoes do occur and they are actually twice as likely to be deadlier than those occurring during the day. The reasons they are deadlier are because: more people are sleeping and less likely to hear the warnings; some people don’t take the warnings seriously because they can’t see it outside at night; and fewer storm chasers like to track tornadoes at night because it’s too dangerous.


These five interesting facts about tornadoes should make everyone understand just how serious they can be. By understanding the facts and being ready to take shelter when there’s a tornado siren, the better prepared we’ll be and more lives will definitely be saved.


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About the author

Sean Smith