Tornadoes' distinctive funnel clouds are actually transparent. They become visible when water droplets pulled from a storm's moist air condense or when dust and debris are taken up. Funnels typically grow about 660 feet (200 meters) wide.
Tornado paths range from 100 yards to one mile wide and are rarely more than 15 miles long. They can last from several seconds to more than an hour, however, most don't exceed 10 minutes. Most tornadoes travel from the southwest to northeast with an average speed of 30 mph, but the speed has been observed to range from almost no motion to 70 mph.
It has over 1200 tornadoes per year (but only 2% of those are severe) causing70 fatalities and 1,500 injuries
The conditions that lead to the formation of tornadoes are most often met in the central and southern U.S., where warm, humid air from the Gulf of Mexico collides with cool, dry air from the Rockies and Canada.
Peak months of tornado are April, May, and June. However, tornadoes have occurred in every month and at all times of the day or night. A typical time of occurrence is on an unseasonably warm and sultry Spring afternoon between 3 p.m. and 9 p.m
With its ability to detect air motion within a cloud, Doppler radar technology has greatly advanced the accuracy of tornado warning.
Using the principle known as the Doppler effect , Doppler radar can identify the initial formation and subsequent development of the mesocyclone within a thunderstorm that frequently precedes tornado development.
vulnerability is conditions (susceptibility) that reduce the ability of people or places to respond to and recover from environmental threats, while vulnerability is the degree to which different social groups are at risk from hazards .
Tornadoes are violent, unpredictable windstorms in which winds can reach up to 225 mph and devastate the areas through which they pass. Many dangers are associated with tornadoes, both immediate and long-term, and anyone caught in a tornado should seek shelter below ground or in a concrete room away from windows until the storm has passed .
The strong winds present during a tornado can uproot trees and level buildings. Sudden changes in air pressure due to the force of moving air currents can shatter windows and stress structures such as homes and barns when the building expands or contracts. A tornado can tear the roof or entire stories from a building as it passes. Tornado-force winds can also cause phone, power and other utility lines to break and fall.
Flying debris can destroy property and even kill people during a tornado. Even tiny objects such as pebbles or straw can penetrate much larger objects when speeding through the air, damaging buildings, automobiles and other structures.
Even after a tornado has passed, there are dangers in its wake. Downed power lines can pose serious risks of electric shock and death. Bridges and other infrastructure may be weakened from wind damage or debris, and buildings may be unsafe to enter for the same reasons.
A person, animal or object can be swept through the air or over considerable distances along the ground by tornado winds. When caught in these winds, a collision with stationary objects or the ground is not only likely, but potentially fatal.
Disaster Services has worked hard to ensure that families receive the support and care they deserve.
This support began with a call for help which was answered by hundreds of volunteers who worked over 1,000 hours to help families clean-up and rebuild. Next, LSSMN Disaster Services helped the citizens of Wadena develop the Wadena/ Otter-Tail Long Term Recovery Committee (WOLTRC), which was
established to help develop resources for the rebuilding and recovery efforts in Wadena and Otter Tail counties. Then, LSSMN hired and continues to supervise staff in disaster case management, volunteer recruitment and reconstruction management to support families as they work through this difficult time in their lives.
Disaster Case Management has assisted 139 families locate the resources to rebuild their lives and homes and has helped WOLTRC distribute over $265,000. By recruiting dozens of volunteers and supervising those volunteers many homeowners are finally moving back “home”.
Emergency Disaster Service (EDS) personnel from divisions in the Southern Territory are providing food, drink, emotional and spiritual care to the victims and other resources, like clean-up kits, are available as needed in a number of areas.