The tornado severity that begins in January in USA has been low key this year. Where typically almost 100 tornadoes rip through the country till March end, only about two dozen tornadoes have ravaged the cities till now, not that citizens of USA were complaining. However, the recent tornado that has raked Tulsa and Oklahoma may break this ‘tornado-drought’ in USA.
The tornado season usually ramps up Midwest of the USA called ‘Tornado Alley’ in March, but weather extremities have funneled cold air into much of the country, depriving the atmosphere of the warm, moist air essential to form severe storms for most of the month. Weathermen, though, are still hopeful.
They have based their hope on the several tornadoes that touched down across areas of Arkansas and Oklahoma, including Moore, late Wednesday afternoon. While one person lost life due to the tornado in Tulsa, several others were injured due to extremely strong winds. The tornado activity has also left a trail of destruction in Oklahoma.
Several houses have been uprooted while many households are without power after the tornado ripped through the city.
According to Skymet Meteorology Division in India, strong thunderstorms are likely to press towards Little Rock and other parts of the country till tomorrow.
Meanwhile, scientists are attempting to find a solution to the low key start of the tornado season in USA.
Now El Nino to predict tornado activity?
March is a transitional month, where warm moist air from the Gulf of Mexico interacts with the cold Arctic air that results in thunderstorms and tornadoes. Though most parts of the country this year were stuck in a winter mode.
Looking for a solution, a team of scientists at the Columbia University have found that there is a measured decrease in the number of tornadoes this year.
According to their findings, years where El Nino conditions were present in the tropical Pacific were also the years where tornado activity was suppressed in USA.
The team intends to start issuing seasonal tornado forecasts that are expected to be similar to the hurricane and seasonal outlooks issued by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Their study will be based on the comparison of weather records during El Niño years versus La Niña years.