Two Andover, Kansas Tornadoes: 1991 and 2022 Comparison

an image from the 2022 andover tornado of a house with no roof

How Sheltering Saved Lives in These Similar Tornadoes

Seventeen deaths versus zero deaths. An important tornado safety lesson was gleaned from the recent tornado affecting Wichita and Andover, Kansas.

On April 29, 2022, a strong tornado touched down in the far southeast part of the City of Wichita at 8:10 pm. The 2022 tornado moved northeast into the City of Andover along a path similar to the 1991 Wichita-Andover F-5 tornado. But there was a major difference: the 1991 tornado caused 17 deaths, while the 2022 tornado killed no one.

In 1991, Andover’s single siren failed to sound. The National Weather Service only provided about five minutes of advance warning. As a result, people didn’t shelter and were killed. These deaths included people in a mobile home park with a common shelter that differed from many homes.

Above, is a video taken by storm chaser Ben Colcomb as the 2022 tornado was crossing Andover Road on the west side of the city. It shows a roof flying off (see the photo below with an arrow highlighting the roof). In the close-up photo of the home, in addition to being de-roofed, most of the windows are blown out, and a tree limb penetrates the home (also below, white arrow pointing to limb).


image from the 2022 andover tornado showing a home's roof in the flying debris

an image from the 2022 andover tornado showing a house with destroyed roof

In 2022, the difference was sheltering combined with instant alerting. At 8:10, when the NWS tornado warning was issued, smartphones triggered with a Wireless Emergency Alert, WeatherCall was alerting its customers, and television went to continuous coverage conveying the tornado warning. By the time the tornado reached the home in the photograph above, the sirens had blared for seven minutes.

Consider the situation of people without a basement or professional shelter: roof flying, the deafening roar of 155+ mph winds, glass shattering, and objects flying through the wall and now-empty window frames. With a Survive-A-Storm shelter, not only is all of that avoided, you and your family would ride out the storm in complete safety.

How to Find Money For A Tornado Shelter

In these inflationary times, it is important to make every dollar count. There are state and federal programs to help pay for shelters.

You can find links to funding for shelters on a state-by-state basis

And you can find out about the federal programs that fund tornado shelters online. 

While the 2022 tornado season is still in progress, twisters occur every month of the year and in all 50 states. In addition, there is a secondary peak in tornadoes in the autumn.

Now is the time to ensure that you and your family are protected. Call us today. After all, the next storm may already be on the way.

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