Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week

The week of April 13-17, 2015 is Tornado and Severe Weather Awarness Week in Wisconsin. The National Weather Service in Wisconsin and Wisconsin Emergency Management are asking that everyone take time to go over their safety plans so that they will be ready when severe weather strikes. The time to prepare is before the storms hit.

Wisconsin averages 23 tornadoes per year, with most tornadoes occurring from mid-afternoon into the early evening. The peak tornado season in Wisconsin is May through August, with June having the greatest number of tornadoes. A record-setting 62 tornadoes occurred in 2005. In 2012, Wisconsin had only 4 tornadoes. Last year, there were 22 tornadoes reported in the state, including two in east-central Wisconsin.

The "average" Wisconsin tornado has a  7-10 minute duration, a path length of 4-6 miles, and a damage width of about 120 yards.

Another hazard of the warm-season is powerful, straight-line thunderstorm winds that can exceed 60 mph. Every year Wisconsin will get a few storms that generate hurricane-force winds of at least 75 to 100 mph. Severe Thunderstorm Warnings are issued for these wind events.

Large hail is also a hazard with thunderstorms. Severe Thunderstorm Warnings are also issued for storms with hail of at least 1" in diameter.

Other warm-season hazards localized flash floods or widespread river and lowland flooding, lightning, and excessive heat.

Additional Informational

NOAA Weather Radio Flash Floods Tornado Basics
Tornado Safety Wisconsin's Tornadoes NE Wisconsin Tornadoes Severe Thunderstorms
Lightning Severe Weather Watches and Warnings
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