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Tornado Essay, Research Paper

A tornado is a violent windstorm usually characterized by a twisting, funnel

shaped cloud that is caused by a thunderstorm or a hurricane. It is produced

when a cool air mass meets a warm air mass and forces the warm air mass to

rise over the cool air mass very rapidly. Most of the damage from a tornado

is a result of high wind velocity and wind blown debris. Most tornadoes

occur during the months of March through August, but they can occur during

any time of the year. They also seem to strike in the afternoon to the evening.

What you should do and know

You should know all key terms that are used to describe tornado


1. Tornado Watch- This means that tornadoes are possible and you

should stay tuned to a radio station for more reports.

2. Tornado Warning- A tornado has been sighted and you should

take shelter immediately.

3. Severe Thunderstorm Watch- Severe thunderstorms are possible

and they may bring a tornado.

4. Severe Thunderstorm Warning- A severe thunderstorm is here

and a tornado may be present.

5. You should know the country and terrain in which you live. This is

used in identifying the location of a tornado.

6. You should know the places you can seek shelter such as a cabin or

rest area.

7. Practice doing this before you head out into the wilderness.

8. You should have emergency supplies on hand such as:

Flashlight with extra batteries

Portable battery operated radio with extra batteries

First aid kit with all supplies and manual

Emergency food and water

Nonelectric can opener

All essential medicines


Sturdy, good shoes

9. Make an inventory of all your possessions and take pictures of them

so if they are lost they you can replace them.

Tornado Danger Signs

Large hail

Calmness before the tornado hits

Cloud of debris

Funnel cloud

Roaring noise

Calmness and clear skies after the tornado

What to do during a tornado watch

1. Listen to your radio for the latest weather updates.

2. Be alert for an approaching storm so you can get ready and gather

your emergency disaster materials up. If you see a funnel cloud call your

local emergency number to report it if you can.

3. Be ready to take shelter.

What to do during a tornado if you are outside

If possible get inside a building

If there is no shelter nearby or there is no time to get indoors, lie down

in a ditch or a low-lying area with your hands shielding your head. Be

aware of flooding in the low lying area or ditch.

What you should do after the tornado

Help any injured or trapped people

Give first aid if it is necessary and do not move any

seriouly injured victims unless they are in jeopardy of

more injuries.

Call for help

Turn on your radio to get the latest information

Use a telephone if you have one to make any emergency


Did you know this…

Tornadoes can be nearly invisible and only marked by swirling debris at

the base of the funnel.

On average the U.S. experiences about 100,000 thunderstorms a year and

out of those about 1,000 tornadoes develop.

Although tornadoes can occur throughout the world the U.S. has the most

and most devastating ones.

Tornadoes produce the most violent winds in the world. Tornado winds

can be as high as 300 miles per hour, travel distances over 100 miles and

reach heights of over 60,000 feet above the ground.

In 1988 121 tornadoes struck 15 south central states. This resulted in 14

deaths and damages reaching $108 million.


The following resources were used to do this project

Federal Emergency Managment Agency (FEMA)

Miami Institute of Hurricanes

Encarta ?95

Funk and Wagnalls New Encylopedia

American Red Cross

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