Touchdown Phenomenon Tornado Case Study

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In April of 2011, a supercell caused 363 tornadoes to touch down in several states within a four day period. On April 27th alone, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration confirmed over 200 tornadoes touched down that ranked between F-0 and F-6 on the Fujita scale. This record breaking phenomenon resulted in the deaths of 348 people with damages estimating over $11 billion dollars. Due to the magnitude of the outbreak, National Weather Services assigned several teams to not only investigate the storm, but also the effectiveness of NWS. These teams took an in-depth look at how and why the storm was so large and if/how National Weather Services could have done more to prepare the public of the oncoming outbreak. Each day of …show more content…
Within a 24 hour span, 219 tornadoes across several states destroyed the lives of thousands of people and caused billions of dollars in damages. This broke the previous record of tornadoes in single day with 147 confirmed touch downs. Different than the other days, April 27th had twisters that ranked from the lowest and least dangerous F-0 all the way to the highest, rarest, and often most dangerous F-5. This was the only day of the outbreak that had confirmed tornadoes of the F-4 and F-5 levels. Alabama and Tennessee were the most affected since more than half of the 219 occurred in these two states. April 27th was also the deadliest day of the outbreak with 317 fatalities. As the supercell began to dissipate, it had one last day of deadly tornadoes on April 28, 2011. These tornadoes were weaker and more isolated with most ranking F-0 and F-1 with a few F-2s and one F-3. April 28th had 47 confirmed touch downs and three people lost their lives to a single F-3 tornado in Virginia. Finally, after four days of terror and destruction, the supercell moved over the Atlantic Ocean where it eventually dissipated. There were many similarities in the four days of the tornado outbreak. One of the most important is that almost every tornado had at least some form of warning. National Weather Services did they best they could to forecast and give ample warning for the tornadoes. However, due to the unpredictable and misunderstood nature …show more content…
The two primary establishments responsible for this are National Weather Services and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. The news we get from the local television stations is a good source of local weather, but NWS and NOAA monitor weather all over the world. The NOAA Weathering Radio or NWR is an excellent source of accurate weather and climate information and is also an emergency broadcast system. This will interrupt all frequencies when there are alerts and warnings about weather in the area. The NWR works alongside federal, state, and local emergency managers and the Federal Communications Commission’s Emergency Alert System to ensure that the appropriate watch, warning, or advisory reaches the appropriate public with the most accurate details possible. Scientists and meteorologists use hundreds of different tools, machines, and techniques to not only monitor weather but also to attempt to better understand it. With modern advancements, meteorologists are able to more accurately predict the weather. Satellite Imagery like the Geostationary Operation Environmental Satellite and infrared technology are some of the most common and useful tools when monitoring weather. The problem with the tornadoes is they are very hard to predict or understand. Instruments like anemometers, which measure wind speed, are often

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