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Top Ten U.S. States for Tornadoes That Damage Homes, People and Property


March through August is tornado season in the United States, where some 1,000 tornadoes hit every year. Be prepared. Tornadoes are more powerful than any other storm: They can toss freight trains like toys and throw your house down the block.
If you live in one of the top ten tornado states identified in order below, be smart and prepare yourself and your family for unexpected disaster:

  1. Florida is hit by more tornadoes than any other state in the U.S. and, also, also by more severe thunderstorms than any state.
  2. Oklahoma is the heart of what meteorologists call Tornado Alley. Its weather patterns often make warm and cool air collide — ideal for creating tornadoes and damaging thunderstorms.
  3. Kansas is where a mammoth twister whisked Dorothy and her little dog Toto to Oz, but it’s also where thousands of people are caught unprepared for damaging storms every year.
  4. Iowa was clobbered by 28 tornadoes in 2013 and averages of about 50 damaging thunderstorms every year.
  5. Illinois experienced one of its deadliest years on record for tornadoes in 2013. Storms generated widespread flooding and cut power in more than 160,000 homes and businesses.
  6. Indiana ranks second in the nation for the costs of tornado damage, sixth for the number of deaths and seventh for the number of personal injuries.
  7. Mississippi averages 29 tornadoes per year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Its coastal regions are hit by devastating hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico.
  8. Maryland ranks in the Tornado Top Ten because of its mid-south and Atlantic Ocean weather patterns generate many twisters and serious thunderstorms.
  9. Louisiana ranks second in the U.S. for the most thunderstorms annually and as a result, and averages 37 tornadoes per year.
  10. Texas averages 155 tornadoes per year – the most of any state — but its land mass is so large it ranks 10th in the U.S. per tornadoes every 10,000 square miles.
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Disaster Preparedness Means Planning Ahead

Checking out the top stories on television, radio and the internet, we see many natural disasters occurring in many parts of the country. Fires are burning in Colorado and South Dakota. A record heat wave is sweeping the eastern seaboard from North Carolina to New Jersey. Throw in a few earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, floods and tsunamis and we have very good reasons to prepare ourselves for the worst.
Kiplinger.com recently published a list if the 10 States most at risk of disaster. In it, they ranked the states that had suffered the biggest property losses from disasters over the past decade (2002-2011). Topping the list were Louisiana ($32.2 billion), Florida ($31.4 billion) and Texas ($24.9 billion). Mississippi was in 4th place with $15 billion in estimated insured property damage. Rounding out the top 10 were Alabama, Tennessee, Missouri, Oklahoma, Ohio and Illinois, all with between $5-8 billion dollars. It should come as no surprise that most of these states are located in Tornado Alley and that most of the damage was caused by tornadoes or hurricanes.

Hurricane season usually runs from the beginning of June to the end of November. At the beginning of this season, NOAA issued the following statement. “Conditions in the atmosphere and the ocean favor a near-normal hurricane season in the Atlantic Basin this season, NOAA announced today from Miami at its Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, and home to the Hurricane Research Division.” But, don’t let that lull you into a false sense of security. “NOAA’s outlook predicts a less active season compared to recent years,” said NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D. “But regardless of the outlook, it’s vital for anyone living or vacationing in hurricane-prone locations to be prepared. We have a stark reminder this year with the 20th anniversary of Hurricane Andrew.” Hurricane Andrew was a Category 5 hurricane that devastated South Florida on August 24, 1992 and was the first storm in a late-starting season that produced only six named storms.

Preparedness is the key to survival, so do everything you can to prepare for any type of emergency before it happens. Make sure your emergency survival kit is complete and up to date. Augment your emergency supplies with a hurricane kit and and follow the steps in your hurricane preparedness guide and you will have prepared for the worst.

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