Severe Weather

  1. Tornadoes
  2. Lightning
  3. Strong Winds
  4. Flash Flooding
  5. Hail
  • TornadoCause an average of 70 fatalities and 1,500 injuries each year
  • Produce wind speeds in excess of 250 miles per hour.
  • Can be one mile wide and stay on the ground over 50 miles.

Tornado Facts

  • A tornado is a violently rotating column of air extending from a thunderstorm to the ground.
  • Tornadoes can occur at any time of the year but are most frequent during the spring and summer months.
  • 88% of all tornadoes are classified as weak tornadoes with winds less than 110 miles per hour with a lifetime of 1 to over 10 minutes.
  • 11% of all tornadoes are classified as strong tornadoes with winds 110 to 205 miles per hour with a lifetime that may last 20 minutes or longer.
  • Less than 1% of all tornadoes are classified as violent tornadoes with winds greater than 205 miles per hour and a lifetime that can exceed 1 hour.
  • No place is safe from tornadoes.
  • People caught in the open should seek shelter in a sturdy building if at all possible. Overpasses, ditches, and culverts may provide limited protection from a tornado, but your risk will be greatly reduced by moving inside a strong building.

Who Is Most at Risk

People who are in mobile homes and automobiles!

Be Prepared

  • In a home or building, move to a pre-designated shelter, such as a basement.
  • If an underground shelter is not available, move to a small interior room or hallway on the lowest floor and get under a sturdy piece of furniture. Put as many walls as possible between you and the outside.
  • Stay away from windows!
  • Get out of automobiles. Don't try to outrun a tornado in your car. Lie flat in a nearby ditch or depression and cover your head with your hands.
  • Be aware of flying debris.
  • Leave mobile homes immediately! Go to the lowest floor of a sturdy nearby building or a storm shelter.

More Information

More information on tornadoes can be found at the Storm Prediction Center website