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Old 04-03-2013, 07:12 PM
 
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How bad Dallas Area gets Tornadoes?

Which part or city is safest in terms of Tornadoes occurrence?
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Old 04-03-2013, 07:24 PM
 
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Tornadoes are like a really crappy lottery. They're not frequent but they do happen and they'll typically completely and totally destroy everything the tip touches but the tip isn't always on the ground. Everything else near it will get hit with some severe storm damage. You could lose your house and your neighbor's house be fine. There's not like a place to live where you're immune. Anywhere is fair game. Tornadoes are more common in DFW than most metro areas but there are places like Oklahoma City that get hit worse that us. Take precautions when they hit and you'll very likely be just fine. But there are no guarantees.
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Old 04-03-2013, 07:46 PM
 
Location: plano
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I believe Tornadoes generally travel from SW to NE. This is not always the case but odds are it will be most times. I also believe tall structures such as buildings (and even homes) slightly weaken a storm by the energy taken to destroy or damage them. So odds might be slightly better in the NE sector of dense development than in the SW sector.

The key is tornadoes hitting a specific area are low odds because storms that strong are some what rare and they damage a small area which they hit directly. So low odds one occurs combined with extremely low odds your spot is going to be hit mean.....prepare as if they are going to hit once the warning for your area goes off but realize the odds are still good it wont hit your specific location.

Avoid getting caught up in the adrenalin if you see one near by and stay to watch (as some do accidents on the other side of the road), resist the urge and go to your safe place.

They are dramatic weather events... but have less impact than one might imagine.
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Old 04-03-2013, 07:55 PM
 
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As others have mentioned, tornadoes can be quite destructive, but it is a *tiny* risk one makes when living here. I say tiny because they don't hit the area every year and even when they do and the news media makes it look like entire neighborhoods or towns were flattened, the reality is the damage is usually in a very small area, like a couple of blocks where it touched down. It's horrible for those impacted personally, but it's a very very small percent of the metroplex. If even 1,000 homes were badly damaged last April, keep in mind there are about 2,000,000+ households in DFW. Not even .1% of the residents were impacted vs a hurricane where it's not uncommon for 25%++ to have bad flooding and wind damage.

Be aware and informed, but not fearful.
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Old 04-03-2013, 07:59 PM
 
Location: Grapevine, Texas
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The risk is extremely small. You have a better chance of getting hit by lightning!

Here's a link from the NOAA of historic destructive tornadoes in Texas. Notice that NONE of them are even close to DFW...
A list of the top 10 worst tornadoes in Texas history
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Old 04-03-2013, 08:01 PM
 
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Sounds like a soccer team.


But seriously, Dallas Proper does not see near as much action as outlying areas. SMU is known as "The Hilltop" in Highland Park. "Highland" in that name is literal, as it is a topographic high point. I'm no weatherman, but i think that is what might push the tornadic activity from that area.
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Old 04-04-2013, 07:14 AM
 
Location: DFW - Coppell / Las Colinas
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We have the Best Tornadoes in Texas. We would not consider having a 2nd rate tornado, we send those to Oklahoma.

Only the best will do.
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Old 04-04-2013, 07:23 AM
 
Location: Simmering in DFW
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The best place to live here is where the commute makes sense for your job, the housing meets your budget, the schools are the best fit for your kids and there is a home and neighborhood you like. The whole area is a prairie and we just don't have natural barriers that cause dramatic differences in weather between the areas. The most significant tornado I recall occurred about 13 years ago in downtown Fort Worth. If downtown Fort Worth met my needs I certainly wouldn't avoid living there because there was a tornado there over a decade ago.
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Old 04-04-2013, 07:46 AM
 
Location: plano
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Hail storms often accompany tornadic activity and can cause property damage across a wider area than the tornadic damage. So get a garage big enough for all vehicles and consider this if you have parking options at work.
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Old 04-04-2013, 10:22 AM
 
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All right, let's make this clear: There is no one place in the DFW area that is less or more likely to be hit by a tornado. It's science folks. Hills, trees, buildings, rivers, lakes, indian burial grounds, and enchanted forests don't make a damn difference. If you don't believe me, take a look at these FAQs by the experts:

The Online Tornado FAQ (by Roger Edwards, SPC)

Some of the highlights:

Quote:
[SIZE=2] There is an old legend that my town is protected from tornadoes by the (hill, river, spirit, etc.). Is there any truth to this?[/SIZE] [SIZE=2] No. Many towns which have not suffered a tornado strike contain well-meaning people who perpetuate these myths; but there is no basis for them besides the happenstance lack of a tornado. Many other towns used to have such myths before they were hit, including extreme examples like Topeka KS (F5 damage, 16 killed, 1968) and Waco TX (F5 damage, 114 killed, 1953). Violent tornadoes have crossed rivers of all shapes and sizes. The deadliest tornado in US history (Tri-state Tornado of 18 March 1925, F5 damage, 695 killed) roared undeterred across the Mississippi River, as have numerous other violent tornadoes. Almost every major river east of the Rockies has been crossed by a significant tornado, as have high elevations in the Appalachians, Rockies and Sierra Nevada. The Salt Lake City tornado of 11 August 1999 crossed a canyon--descending one side and rising up the other about halfway along its path. In 1987, a violent tornado (rated F4 by Fujita) crossed the Continental Divide in Yellowstone National Park. [/SIZE]
Quote:
But seriously, Dallas Proper does not see near as much action as outlying areas. SMU is known as "The Hilltop" in Highland Park. "Highland" in that name is literal, as it is a topographic high point. I'm no weatherman, but i think that is what might push the tornadic activity from that area.
Quote:
[SIZE=2]Why does it seem like tornadoes avoid downtowns of major cities?[/SIZE] [SIZE=2] Simply, downtowns cover tiny land areas relative to the entire nation. The chance of any particular tornado hitting a major downtown is quite low--not for any meteorological reason, but simply because downtowns are small targets. Even when tornadoes hit metro areas; their odds of hitting downtown are small out of space considerations alone. For example, downtown Dallas (inside the freeway loop) covers roughly three square miles, Dallas County, about 900 square miles. For a brief tornado in Dallas County, its odds of hitting downtown are only about 1 in 300. Still, downtown tornadoes have happened, including at least four hits on St. Louis alone. The idea of large buildings destroying or preventing a tornado is pure myth. Even the largest skyscrapers pale in size and volume when compared to the total circulation of a big tornado from ground through thunderhead. [/SIZE]
Quote:
[SIZE=2]What are the chances of a tornado near my house?[/SIZE] [SIZE=2] The frequency that a tornado can hit any particular square mile of land is about every thousand years on average, but varies around the country. The reason this is not an exact number is because we don't have a long and accurate enough record of tornadoes to make more certain (statistically sound) calculations. The probability of any tornado hitting within sight of a spot (let's say 25 nautical miles) also varies during the year and across the country. If you want detailed maps so you can judge the tornado probabilities within 25 miles of your location, Dr. Harold Brooks of NSSL has used statistical extensions of 1980-1994 tornado data (believed to be the most representative) to prepare many kinds of threat maps and animations. [/SIZE]
However, you might find this data interesting. It has some interesting probability data over large areas:

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