Tornado tally to date: TILT TILT TILT

I was watching The Weather Channel's coverage of severe weather this evening and they kept opening with a calender of mid March through April to date with the number of tornadoes on each date. I believe there was like 48 on March 12 and 64 on March 30...just ridiculous numbers for tornadoes. So that got me to thinkin.....(its ok im not going to blow up the board) We have got to be anniliating the all time record books are very close to it with the number of tornadoes for a single season to date. Now I know 99 was downright disgusting with the number of tornadoes but we got to be getting close to the top this year. Oh and last I checked its still/only April 6...err 7th if your on the east coast of the time of this posting. So I smell a bar graph of tornado numbers per season comin in here somewhere.
 
While the LSRs are preliminary, SPC puts together a nice graphic depicting the coverage of severe weather over the course of the day. I'm certainly not arguing that preliminary reports are final. We all agree that yesterday's 63 tornado reports will be significantly widdled down as tracks are combined, or that some damage is determined to be downburst/straight line winds. Sure some reports of tornadoes are bogus or misinterpreted by those reporting them, but with even modest certainty (multiple reports, known chaser, photos, video, damage, etc...), I'd rather provide the preliminary information and adjust it accordingly with followup LSRs the next day, public info statements, web articles, etc... Unfortunately, Storm Data is a great resource, but is grossly underutilized, generally because of the many month delay before these final stats are published.
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Thought I would just post this from a related thread. Definately something to consider when discussing tornado numbers this season so far and what the media puts out.
 
So far as a rough estimate. It appears as tho we are seeing about 4 times the usualy number of tornadoes. So with that rough estimate the month f april has already seen 108 tornadoes. If this average verifies we would see an april with about 400 tornadoes. May would be mind boggling with 1200-1600 tornadoes. Thats what we usually average in a single year. If the whole year has about 4 times the total we could see 4000-6000 tornadoes in the U.S.. That would probably be something similiar to throwing in an extra hurricane season. Of course we could also have a may where no tornadoes occur at all but if the law of current trends continues Its almost scary to think of the outcome. It is on the other hand very exciting for chasers.
Lets just hope we can get some of these systems in places where they should be instead of out east. I personally am tired of seeing all these great probably very photogenic storms in areas that are very hard to chase and really give no good photo chances. I mean sure there have been some great pics here and there but if these systems had occured more into the plains I am sure the number of good photos and video would be at least 3 times what we have seen. Thank god for guys like Hollingshead :). Then again his photos were taken in good chase terrain.
I am ready for these things to blow up in the Panhandles or even for the guys to chase in Western and or central Kansas and Nebraska. Western Oklahoma as well but the chaser hordes will be in force there.
Of course as they say..."you can wish in one ahnd and....." well you get the idea. We will take em as we get em. Atleat we arent seeing the past tornado droughts as we have seen.
I say this every season it seems but Western north Texas and Southwest Oklahoma are pushing their luck with dodging the monster sups so far except for the rare exceptions. Western North Texas hasnt seen a decent tornado in awhile and while It may be somewhat because I live here I just have that feeling something is brewing and this area has become somewhat complacent about severe weather. The ghosts of April 10 1979 are fading away and I dont see that as a good thing. Looking at todays coverage of storms form other stations accross the nation today made me feel that stations in Wichita Falls and even Dallas may not be as prepared to aid the community as theY could be. I hope I am dead wrong but I really think people here "while they do pay attention to the weather" most have kinda got complacent and numb to what nature can REALLY dish out. Its just a matter of time.
The law of averages usually wins out at some point. Its just a matter of when. With that being said maybe the law of averages will slack off on the tornado count we have seen but that would be a shame heading into mid April and May and even early June for chasers and also because the areas I mentioned earlier are in desperate need of rain. With rain in April and May comes storms and with storms in April and May comes severe weather including the tornadoes.
 
Along with the higher tornado totals thus far there is a much higher number and that is the death rate.We will need to keep informing folks during the season of the threat of tornados not just during a one week timeframe (Severe Weather Awareness Week).
 
So far as a rough estimate. It appears as tho we are seeing about 4 times the usualy number of tornadoes. So with that rough estimate the month f april has already seen 108 tornadoes. If this average verifies we would see an april with about 400 tornadoes. May would be mind boggling with 1200-1600 tornadoes. Thats what we usually average in a single year. If the whole year has about 4 times the total we could see 4000-6000 tornadoes in the U.S.. That would probably be something similiar to throwing in an extra hurricane season. Of course we could also have a may where no tornadoes occur at all but if the law of current trends continues Its almost scary to think of the outcome. It is on the other hand very exciting for chasers.

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I really like this assessment J. I would only change one note about having "an extra hurricane season."

If we get 4000 tornadoes it would be like a bunch of Nuclear Bombs hit the country.
Definitely going to be interesting how long this SW flow pattern keeps up into May and June.

I'm upset by the number of deaths so far this year; people need to start paying attention more.
I've also noticed the frequency seems higher this year with direct hits on large communities.
 
I'm upset by the number of deaths so far this year; people need to start paying attention more.[/b]
I totally agree with you. They interviewed some lady who had lost her house in TN yesterday and she was like "I just never expected this to happen here" Come on people... How do we get them to understand that it CAN and WILL happen there? I don't have the answer to that. It's really up to the people to realize that severe weather can happen anywhere.

Stan
 
The part that I find interesting is the distribution of deaths for each housing type.
From 2006 Tornado Fatality Information (SPC):

2006fataltornadoes.png

The fact that 2/3rds of the deaths have occurred in permanent homes is surprising. Also, note how most of the deaths have occurred from "strong" (as opposed to 'violent') F2-F3 tornadoes, and even 1 death from an F1.
 
Jeff,
thanks for the numbers and statistics. What you provided was exactly what I was looking for.

Now let me make a few comments on a previous post in this thread.

I say this every season it seems but Western north Texas and Southwest Oklahoma are pushing their luck with dodging the monster sups so far except for the rare exceptions. Western North Texas hasnt seen a decent tornado in awhile and while It may be somewhat because I live here I just have that feeling something is brewing and this area has become somewhat complacent about severe weather. The ghosts of April 10 1979 are fading away and I dont see that as a good thing. Looking at todays coverage of storms form other stations accross the nation today made me feel that stations in Wichita Falls and even Dallas may not be as prepared to aid the community as theY could be. I hope I am dead wrong but I really think people here "while they do pay attention to the weather" most have kinda got complacent and numb to what nature can REALLY dish out. Its just a matter of time.
The law of averages usually wins out at some point. Its just a matter of when. With that being said maybe the law of averages will slack off on the tornado count we have seen but that would be a shame heading into mid April and May and even early June for chasers and also because the areas I mentioned earlier are in desperate need of rain. With rain in April and May comes storms and with storms in April and May comes severe weather including the tornadoes.
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Jason I totally agree with you. The best example I could give on your comments was the night of 3/31 before the MOD risk day in Western Oklahoma. I was at an OU ballgame and ran into a good friend of mind that I hadnt seen in a long while that is from Lawton. Hes a student at OU involved in the aviation program with strong interests in meteorology/weather. I invited him over to my apt after the game for dinner and after dinner I sat down and went through data and forecasts for the next day. Anyway we got to talking and he told me that Lawton/Ft. Sill has never been hit by a tornado and hes 20yrs old. I was surprised to learn that. However, he added that Medicine Park gets hit all the time, which I would agree with but the fact that Lawton has never been hit at all in about a decade and a half (I havent done research, im just going from what he told me) is what surprised me.
But to get to my point and to back up Brock's comments, the whole North Texas, Western North Texas, and SW Oklahoma region is long overdue for tornadic activity and not just a rogue event either. I especially believe this for North Texas. I moved to North Texas in the summer of 2002 so I wasnt around nor was I heavily involved in storm tracking when downtown Ft. Worth got hit in 2001 or 2000 whichever year it was. But one thing I do know and am aware of is the significant drop in severe weather overall in North Texas since that season of the Ft. Worth tornado. And having lived in metroplex for 4 years now, I can say that people there arecomplacent. Ive never seen a severe weather drought in a region within tornado alley like this one, ever. Meteorologically I can kinda explain it with the normal springtime track of s/w too far north and west of the region but still the region is overdue. And like you say Jason, the law of averages will win out, where and when in the regions discussed I cant say but it does concern me. Complaceny being what it is, its why I was so glad to learn that whats his name that runs the TESSA conference ever year (of which I did attend last month) was going to highlight what would happen if a tornado hit Dallas. It also was nice to see the Discovery Channel follow up last month with a documentary of their own on the same scenario.
Anyway, I hope everyone is able to see my point. And this together with the topic of this thread, I hope the scenario of a tornado hitting a metropolitan area does not happen, I would like to see more activity in the region discussed.
 
Chris:

Incredibly Great points about how......
1) North Texas / The Red River Valley, are very long over due for a violent tornado outbreak.
2) How amazingly COMPLACENT North Texans are concerning the hazards associated with severe convective weather.

We see this all the time with idiots driving into flooded areas and either drowning, or forcing emergency officials to have to put their lives on the line to rescue them.

Here in DFW, with the exception of a few, what I am going to call minor events (certainly not minor with regards to property damage and dollar cost), we really have not experienced anything significant, nor an active season since the mid-1990's. ( I am a life-long resident of DFW---have been tracking our weather since 1968.)

We are long overdue. AND, as professional meteorologists and emergency management officials know and say, it will be very ugly WHEN it happens.

AND it does not help when we have local television weather people who say that, "This week there will not be any tornadoes even close to this area!!!" One local TV Weather Idiot said that last week when, if conditions had been slightly different, we could have had an event or two! Most of them are clueless and they certainly do not help our complacent situation.
 
Chris:

Incredibly Great points about how......
1) North Texas / The Red River Valley, are very long over due for a violent tornado outbreak.
2) How amazingly COMPLACENT North Texans are concerning the hazards associated with severe convective weather.

We see this all the time with idiots driving into flooded areas and either drowning, or forcing emergency officials to have to put their lives on the line to rescue them.

Here in DFW, with the exception of a few, what I am going to call minor events (certainly not minor with regards to property damage and dollar cost), we really have not experienced anything significant, nor an active season since the mid-1990's. ( I am a life-long resident of DFW---have been tracking our weather since 1968.)

We are long overdue. AND, as professional meteorologists and emergency management officials know and say, it will be very ugly WHEN it happens.

AND it does not help when we have local television weather people who say that, "This week there will not be any tornadoes even close to this area!!!" One local TV Weather Idiot said that last week when, if conditions had been slightly different, we could have had an event or two! Most of them are clueless and they certainly do not help our complacent situation.
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You think that's LONG overdue. Try 30 years. It has been since 3/12/76 since the Chicago area has had a bad tornado outbreak. Joe Schafer said that on average, a bad outbreak occurs every 15 years in Chicagoland at Fermilab. This area releases students during tornado warnings, puts them in gyms, and is just overall not knowlegeable about tornado safety whatsoever. A strong F3, F4, or F5 will kill dozens, hundreds, or even thousands in this area when it comes; and it will be no one else's fault but the residents'.
 
CNN had SPCs Dan McCarthy on yesterday discussing the TILT score. McCarthy smartly partially dodged the question about record tornado numbers by simply stating April is above average and is the start of the peak tornado season A-M-J. He seemed concerned that May is still comming when he mentioned 2003 and 2004. There was talk of the GoMex being a little above average temp wise which is helping with the moisture advection. Certainly makes you wonder what will happen as instability parameters ratchet up this spring.

Per discussion about cities getting hit there are a number of places that are potentially due for disaster. St. Louis was torn to bits in the late 1800s, The Twin Cities havn't seen a violent long track tornado since 1965, Fargo was hit by an F5 in the 50's, Topeka took a violent hit in the 60's, Omaha in the 70's. While May 3, 1999 was devasting, a glance at a map shows a track that had a lot of less densely populated territory than a track slightly north. There are plenty of less thought of locations that could be prime... Sioux Falls, Sioux City, St. Cloud, MN (last major hit in the 1800s), Lincoln, NE (close call with Hallam), Mason City, IA, Mankato, MN (several near misses since 1992), Norfolk, NE, Madison, WI... pick your regional population center. It is simply a matter of time before the wedge from hell plows through the core of a large metro area during the rush hour. Unfortuantely fatalities would be in the hundreds, perhaps thousanads. It hasn't happened yet, but it could happen tomorrow. I never thought we would see another 100+, much less 1000+ dead in a U.S. hurricane and then Katrina hit.
 
But to get to my point and to back up Brock's comments, the whole North Texas, Western North Texas, and SW Oklahoma region is long overdue for tornadic activity and not just a rogue event either. I especially believe this for North Texas. I moved to North Texas in the summer of 2002 so I wasnt around nor was I heavily involved in storm tracking when downtown Ft. Worth got hit in 2001 or 2000 whichever year it was. But one thing I do know and am aware of is the significant drop in severe weather overall in North Texas since that season of the Ft. Worth tornado.
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Uh oh....this is starting to sound like an Accuweather press release! But yes the Dallas-Ft. Worth metroplex only had one supercell event last year on 25 April 2005 - definitely far below climatological expectations. However, until a system digs far enough south the mid-level winds are going to struggle to support supercell and/or tornadic activity in this region.
 
You want a place where people are complacent about tornadoes, it's eastern Colorado. My hometown of Fort Morgan, 80 miles northeast of Denver, has never been hit by a tornado or any other sort of disaster in 122 years of existence. It's frightening to see how casually people stroll down the street when the sirens are blowing (I saw this for myself on July 21, 2000 when a highly visible F2 tornado moved just 10 miles west of town) People just don't listen to the warnings anymore. We've had strong tornadoes in Colorado in the past; sure their not as common as even say in western Kansas but we do get them and I'm frightened to death of the prospect of even an F2 or F3 hitting one of the larger towns in northeastern Colorado, because of the high number of mobile home parks/modulars on every pivot corner/poorly constructed single family homes and overall low level of severe weather awareness. :blink: I have a feeling we may see a significant outbreak in the western High Plains in the late May/June timeframe, something we haven't seen in 6 years. I'm hungry to bag some great tornadoes without having to drive a few hundred miles, but I don't want to have a stomachache afterwards if one of the towns out in this area gets badly damaged/destroyed by a strong or violent tornado. :(
 
Sounds like the situation here. Macomb's never been hit by a tornado either. When we had a warning on the 2nd, people were in the streets looking around for the tornado. I live in the dorms and the sirens didn't even go off in the buildings, neither did the city siren.
 
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