Tornado Myths – What Have You Heard?

Tornadoes have been a weather phenomenon for centuries.  And with that, come many tornado myths.  From the first published photographs of tornadoes, people were both in awe and afraid of them.  The chaotic whirlwinds can blow through a town and destroy one side of the street, one home on a street, or demolish the entire town.  They bounce around, with no rhyme or reason, a respecter of no one and no city. When it comes to their behavior, there are some common myths that need to be addressed to educate the masses.  For one, many believe that the intensity of a tornado is based on the funnel size.  This is a false statement.  Tornado funnels can change sizes during its life-cycle.  Not only that, over 100 violent storms in the last 60 years have been no larger than 300 feet across.  A smaller tornado does not mean a lesser tornado.

Many also believe tornadoes only travel in one direction and never strike the same place twice.  First, tornadoes are chaotic at best.  They move in erratic patterns and are quite unpredictable.  While many tornadoes do move in a northeasterly direction, this is not always the case.  The 1997 EF5 tornado that struck Jarrell, Texas traveled southwest.  And to think tornadoes don’t strike the same place twice is one of the wildest tornado myths ever.  For example, in 1916, 1917, and 1918, the town of Codell, Kansas was hit by a tornado—on the same day of each year!  Talk about irrational!

tornado myths vs facts
Codell, Kansas Tornadoes

Tornado myths need to be tossed aside.

One last tornado myth that must be debunked is the thought that a tornado is only dangerous if it hits the ground.  This is wrong.  The violent winds and debris from the winds of a tornado can be just as damaging and deadly as a tornado that skips across the ground.  It is the wind and the debris that cause damage.

Of course, there are more myths where tornadoes are concerned, and it is important to know what you are up against concerning tornadoes.  One of the most important things you can do to protect yourself and your family is to have a safety plan in place and educate yourselves on how tornadoes look, how they form, what perfect conditions spawn them, etc.

The more you know, the better.  If you live in an area that is more prone to tornadoes, consider purchasing a Survive-a-Storm Shelter made of steel.  (Concrete crumbles, and fiberglass cracks.)  If you would like to know more, give us a call today at 1-888-360-1492.

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