You are probably familiar with terms like “tornado season” and “Tornado Alley,” but do you know exactly what they mean? Understanding the most likely time a tornado may strike your home—and whether your area is prone to such severe weather—can help you take the appropriate steps to protect yourself, your family, and your home.
When Does Tornado Season Begin?
The United States sees about 1,200 tornadoes every year. Funnel clouds can touch down any time of day or night and during any month of the year. Still, 60% of tornadoes occur during tornado season, which officially begins in March. This time of year, temperatures transition from cooler to warmer weather, creating unstable atmospheric conditions for tornadoes to form.
How Long Does Tornado Season Last?
Tornado season officially lasts until June. Southern areas are more likely to get tornadoes in the early spring, while the season peaks in late spring for northern states. For instance, Texas sees the most tornadoes in April, while South Dakota’s peak is in June.
Just remember, tornadoes can happen any time of year, even in the winter. Such storms tend to move faster due to upper atmospheric winds that drive the tornado forward. They are also more common at night. This means homeowners have less time to act and may be sleeping when emergency alerts come through.
Where are Tornadoes Most Common?
Tornadoes have been reported in all 50 states and are more common in the US than any other country. The top 10 states with the highest average number of tornadoes per year include:
- Texas (155)
- Kansas (96)
- Florida (66)
- Oklahoma (62)
- Nebraska (57)
- Illinois (54)
- Colorado (53)
- Iowa (51)
- Minnesota (45)
- Missouri (45)
Nine out of 10 of these states are in a region dubbed “Tornado Alley.” Many people assume that flat land is what makes this region so tornado-prone, but that’s not the only factor. Moist air from the Gulf of Mexico and cool, dry air from the Rocky Mountains collide in Tornado Alley, priming it for tornado activity.
What Does Tornado Damage Look Like?
All tornadoes are destructive enough to cause property damage, even if they rank 0 on the Enhanced Fujita (EF) scale. At this ranking, the wind blows at 65 to 85 mph. Obviously, more severe storms can do more damage, with EF5 tornadoes gusting at over 200 mph. The destruction typically left behind after a tornado includes:
- Downed trees and power lines
- Damaged roofs
- Shattered windows and glass doors
- Damaged siding
- Detached gutters
- Dented or collapsed garage doors
Tornadoes can cause significant storm damage to your home or business, but you don’t have to recover on your own. Turn to DKI for help assessing the damage, determining the best course of action, and filing an insurance claim. Our goal is to relieve some stress and uncertainty during this difficult time. To request emergency restoration services, please call 877-533-0210 or contact us online today.