Tornadoes and hail pummel the heartland

 A WHIRLWIND OF A MORE LITERAL SENSE TOUCHED DOWN IN SEVERAL MIDWESTERN STATES LAST WEEK. 

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAID THAT 26 TORNADOES RIPPED THROUGH PARTS OF IOWA, ILLINOIS, INDIANA, TENNESSEE, AND MISSOURI – WHERE ONE OFFICIAL SUMMED UP THE SCENE:

J.R. WRIGHT / FIRE INSPECTOR: "EVERYTHING JUST TURNED OVER - IT LOOKS LIKE A DISASTER ZONE.  SO THE ONLY THING TO DO IS JUST TO JUMP OUT HERE AND HELP PEOPLE AND TRY TO DO THE BEST YOU CAN TO GET THESE PEOPLE BACK SAFE TO THEIR LOVED ONES."

THE FUNNEL CLOUD OF ANOTHER TWISTER, IN IOWA, WAS CAPTURED ON CAMERA.

THE STORMS ALSO BROUGHT DAMAGING HAIL - THE SIZE OF BASEBALLS, IN SOME CASES – WHICH CAUSED MASSIVE DAMAGE.

MOS RESIDENT: "WE COULD HEAR THE HAIL HITTING THE DOOR OF THE STORM CELLAR, UH, HEARD THE ALL CLEAR ALARM, COME OUT OF THE STORM CELLAR, AND EVERYTHING WAS JUST TORE ALL TO PIECES."

ALTHOUGH THESE FUNNEL-SHAPED WINDSTORMS CAN HAPPEN ANY TIME OF YEAR, THEY ARE MOST LIKELY TO OCCUR BETWEEN APRIL AND JUNE. SO, WE’LL LIKELY BE SEEING A LOT MORE OF THIS WEATHER PHENOMENON SWIRLING AROUND THE MIDWEST IN THE COMING MONTHS. BUT HOW DO THESE DESTRUCTIVE FUNNELS FORM? 
HERE TO EXPLAIN IS SCIENCE COORESPONDENT MARGARET THOMPSON. 

Instructional Links

Website Article: Ready Ohio, Are You Ready for High Winds or Tornadoes?

Website Article: DOGOnews, Can Giant Wall Deter the Formation of Destructive tornadoes | Leveled articles explaining tornadoes, diagrams, video. vocabulary & geography words.

Video: INFOhio Digital Video Collection, Weather Safety | May require password.

 

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