At crouch down covering your head and neck

At a glance

Speed of Onset: The speed of
onset can vary depending on the pace of the storm

Frequency of Occurrence:
Around 1000 tornadoes touch down per year but are more prevalent during spring
and summer months (“tornado,” 2013)

Duration: “Tornadoes can
last from several *seconds to more than an hour” (Blum et al., 2017)

Forewarning: “A severe
weather forecaster can… predict severe weather (including tornadoes) a day or
two in advance” (Blum et al., 2017)

Geographic Scope: No more
than a couple miles square however flash flooding and extreme wind may also
affect the surrounding area

Range of Intensity: EF0-EF5
based on different criteria (formerly used was the F0-F5 scale)


Tornadoes can cause serious injury by loose
debris and may result in death

High wind and accumulating debris can destroy

Flooding and wind which often accompany
tornadoes can ruin infrastructure by snapping power lines and trees

Temporary job-loss can happen while businesses
rebuild and power gets restored


Tornadoes: A Hazard Informational

By Chloe Anderson


Steps for Preparedness:

1.       Have
a plan to go somewhere safe like a basement, shelter, or a low-lying area (not
under a bridge) and crouch down covering your head and neck

2.       Create
an emergency kit and store it in your safe room, update regularly

3.       Listen
to a weather radio station for updates on the approaching tornado

4.       “Look
for the following danger signs:

Dark, often greenish sky

Large hail

A large, dark, low-lying cloud

Loud roar, similar to a freight train

Sirens” (“Tornadoes,” n.d.)



All states are at risk for a tornado

The geographic region where most US tornadoes
occur is “east of the Rocky Mountains with concentrations in the central and
southern plains, the Gulf Coast and Florida” (“Tornadoes,” n.d.)



The most vulnerable groups to be
affected by a tornado are those who live near tornado alley. Vehicles and non-sturdy
structures such as mobile homes also create vulnerability. Weaker materials and
no solid connection to the earth mean that “mobile homes are, in general, much
easier for a tornado to damage and destroy” (Blum et al., 2017). Other
vulnerable groups include those with mobility hinderances, disabilities, and
young children. Getting to the safety of a basement or otherwise sturdy
structure is not feasible for some.



Tornadoes can range from emergency to disaster depending on
its intensity. Many communities have adopted underground power lines which
assists in power-outages after severe weather. Using higher quality building
materials such as concrete can help mitigate the severity of structural damage.
In addition, warning systems and education on the topic of tornado safety can
reduce deaths.


Blum, H.,
Branik, M., Brooks, H., Cappella, C., Carbin, G., Crisp, C., … Thompson, R.
(2017, May 1). The Online Tornado FAQ. Retrieved January 25, 2018, from

(2013, October 8). Retrieved January 25, 2018, from

(n.d.). Retrieved January 23, 2018, from

Tornado Risks
and Hazards in the Midwest United States. (2007, August). Retrieved January 28,
2018, from