To prevent future fires, we need to focus on combating climate change through policy reform and sustainable living. Unfortunately, when a tornado covers so much ground, it’s more likely to hit populated areas. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links. You can post details about what animals you can accommodate here; and if you or someone you know needs help evacuating any pets, you can request help or browse available listings here. The central United States is aptly nicknamed “Tornado Alley” for its tendency to see more tornadoes than anywhere else in the world, and that total includes at least a couple of big, mile-wide tornadoes every year. It’s not exactly the eye of a hurricane, but the middle of a tornado usually is the calmest part of one of these storms. The Red Cross has about 600 workers coordinating meal distribution, installing victims in shelters and hotels, and providing other support across Northern California. It’s unsettling to think about what 200-plus mph winds can do when they tear through a populated area. Black Friday is finally here, and Amazon is offering great deals on kitchen appliances, tech, video games, and plenty more. A supercell is a thunderstorm with a rotating updraft. 54.00. 348 deaths occurred in that outbreak, of which 324 were tornado related. A recent tornado in Wisconsin tracked along a path more than 80 miles long. This rotating updraft helps the storm become strong and resilient. The United States is home to the majority of all the tornadoes that touch down around the world every year. The reason we can see tornadoes is that the low pressure within that column condenses moisture in the air, producing a funnel cloud. The Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation tries to fill those demands by providing things like hydration backpacks, thermal-imaging cameras, brush-clearing tools, and more. Scientists are still studying why some supercells produce tornadoes and others don’t, but a well-defined hook echo is usually a bad sign that things could get ugly in a hurry. The largest tornadoes require immense thunderstorms called supercells in order to form. Get exclusive deals, product news, reviews, and more with the Mental Floss Smart Shopping newsletter. Unfortunately, the city of Los Angeles doesn’t allocate enough public funds to the fire department to equip firefighters with all the important gear they need. Tornadoes usually form in the “hook echo” of a supercell, which is the point where winds wrapping around the storm meet with the updraft racing skyward into the storm. It’s common to hear reports of trenches scoured into the earth and pavement ripped out of the ground from the intense winds. Wildfires continue to ravage millions of acres across California, Oregon, and Washington, and strong winds forecasted in some of those regions could aggravate the blazes. Many of the tragic tornadoes we’ve seen in recent history caused the amount of damage they did not just because they were intense, but because they covered so much land. 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