How likely is my area to be hit by a tornado?

While it’s impossible to predict the future, the combination of scientific advancements and historical data give us increasingly accurate information about the likelihood of a tornado in our area.

(NOTE: For immediate concerns, check out Weather Channel’s Tornado Central)

If you’re one of the millions living in Tornado Alley, your area averages 3 or more tornadoes (EF3+) per year in a 10,000 square mile area.

The area defined as “Tornado Alley” has changed, growing much further East to include the states of Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, and even Florida. The Gulf portion of this is commonly referred to as Dixie Alley, where warm air out of the Gulf clashes with dry air from the deserts of Arizona and West Texas, causing tornadoes in the Fall, Winter and Spring months (not usually Summer).

New Tornado Alley

Dixie Alley

Tornado Alley is a massive area though. How likely is YOUR area to see a tornado? The graphic below shows historical EF3+ tornadoes per 2,470 square mile area.

tornado alley

Perhaps an even better indication, this graphic shows the average tornado path length within 25 miles of ANY point.

Average Yearly Tornado Path Length

When is it most likely to happen for your area?

Maybe science will one day be able to predict the future. Until then, we can only prepare for it.

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