Posted at 2:20 PM on June 24, 2011
by Paul Huttner
Filed under: Tornadoes
There's an old tornado myth that tornadoes do not strike cities. 2011 has proved that to be a myth in spades.
Our local NWS has a great write up today on the amazing number of urban tornadoes in 2011.
Recent Events Serve as a Reminder that Tornadoes can Happen in Cities
"The degree of tornado damage across the country during the past three months has been devastating. Tornadoes thus far have caused a preliminary 537 fatalities and many more injuries. Thousands of homes and businesses have been destroyed, including in densely populated areas.
It is a lengthy list of cities that have had tornado occurrences so far in 2011. Some city metropolitan areas that have seen strikes by significant tornadoes (those rated as EF-2 or stronger on the Enhanced Fujita scale) include Birmingham, Jackson Mississippi, Joplin, Little Rock, Louisville, Raleigh, Saint Louis, Springfield Massachusetts, and Tuscaloosa. Other metropolitan areas have seen damage by EF-0 or EF-1 tornadoes, including Chicago, Philadelphia, and the Twin Cities.
Tornado path through North Minneapolis May 22nd.
So far this storm season, four tornadoes have occurred in the seven county Twin Cities metro area, and six tornadoes have been documented within 25 miles of Minneapolis. One of these on May 22nd was responsible for one fatality and approximately 30 injuries in North Minneapolis.
Tornadoes can happen anywhere. Densely populated areas are every bit as susceptible to tornado strikes, including violent tornadoes such as those that struck Joplin and Tuscaloosa. Last year, Minnesota saw four violent tornadoes of EF-4 intensity. On May 6th 1965, a tornado outbreak with four violent tornadoes occurred within and very near what is now the Twin cities and surrounding suburbs. It is simply a myth that cities are safe from tornadoes. Tornadoes have happened and can happen in cities, including the Twin Cities.
The destruction of this spring has shown it is important not to be complacent with regard to severe weather preparedness. Being severe weather prepared at home, the workplace, school, and elsewhere is key. It is wise to review what you would do if a tornado warning is issued in those situations. Stay informed on the weather when there is a possibility for severe thunderstorms. Large venues, especially outdoors, can be more vulnerable to severe weather. For planners and workers at such events, remember the potential of severe weather in your safety plans and consider NWS StormReady. Now is the time to prepare. The severe weather season in Minnesota and Wisconsin continues through July and August, and can in some years persist into the autumn months."
Decent weekend forecast:
It looks liek the weekend will be decent and fell a bit more like summer overall. There are still some occasional shower chances, and the possibility of severe weather may return by Sunday night & Monday.
Have a great weekend!