policy statement Tornado Preparedness and Safety (Adopted by AMS Council 28 February 2000) 1. Introduction deaths in the United States totaled 130, including 42 in one central Florida outbreak and 34 in one tornado Tornadoes are among the most violent natural at- that struck Birmingham, Alabama. In 1999, one tor- mospheric phenomena. The risk of death and injury nado killed 38 in the Oklahoma City metropolitan from tornadoes can be minimized by learning more area. There are lessons to be learned from these events about them, planning for them, understanding the for further mitigation of damage and reduction in warning process, and following basic safety rules. casualties. On average, 1200 tornadoes are reported in the The primary dangers for humans associated with United States each year. While statistics appear to in- tornadoes are those produced by extremely high wind, dicate an increase in the occurrence of tornadoes since the impact of debris propelled by high wind, destruc- the 1950s, that trend is more likely due to advances in tion of mobile homes, collapse of buildings, and over- the observing, reporting, and documentation turning or tossing of vehicles. Statistics continue to process. Most of the increase in tornadoes since the
Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society – American Meteorological Society
Published: May 1, 2000
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