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Old 12-09-2007, 06:25 PM
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Howdy, folks,

I've been wondering about SF lately; we spent a pleasant Saturday morning there a few years back, while passing through headed West; not long enough though.

Can anyone provide a frank answer to the question about whether SF is tornado-prone? Thanks, all.
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Old 12-09-2007, 06:58 PM
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
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Yes, it is. Most anywhere in South Dakota is tornado-prone, but it is very rare that tornadoes make it up here. East River South Dakota gets more tornadoes than West River because the air is much more damp and there. Maybe you remember the tornado that hit Spencer,SD in '98 or '99. It destroyed the whole town.

I would not be concerned with them though. It is very rare to have tornadoes up here.
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Old 12-09-2007, 07:10 PM
Location: So. Dak.
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Yup, like Danny said. I've been here 52 years and have never been in a tornado. We've had warnings and "Tornado Tuesday" was pretty scary, but your chances of being killed in a tornado are probably like the odds of winning the lottery.

Sioux Falls, South Dakota (SD) Detailed Profile - relocation, real estate, travel, jobs, hospitals, schools, crime, news, sex offenders

According to City Data, Sioux Falls has a 108% greater chance of being hit by a tornado then the rest of the country. But keep in mind that it probably includes desert areas and other places that never have tornadoes.
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Old 12-09-2007, 07:36 PM
Location: South Dakota
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Most of the tornadoes that happen in South Dakota occur in the eastern third of the state, probably due to more humidity and it getting more moisture than rest of the state. The humidity and moisture gives storm systems the juice for tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, and heavy rain. I have a lot memories of tornadoes, but forntunately was not a victim of one.

I can clearly remember the Spencer tornado back in the summer of 1998. At the time, Sioux Falls was darn lucky not to have a tornado come any closer to it.

Late June of 2003, there was tornado Tuesday and it cleared Manchester, SD, a town of 20 or so people and did significant property damage in other areas. My family and I were gone on vacation but heard a lot about it from relatives and when we came back.

When I was in fifth grade (May 8, 1993), the grade school had to go in the inner parts of the school building to take cover and a tornado was spotted two miles away from the school. The skies later that day were a dark green and it was eerie to look at.

When I was younger, I can remember vaguely that the basement of my parents' first house had flooding in it and there was a tornado within a few miles of the house.

Southeastern SD gets its share of tornadoes, but it varies by year: some years have very few tornadoes and others with lot of tornadoes. Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas are areas that get quite a bit more tornadoes than Eastern South Dakota.
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Old 12-10-2007, 01:10 PM
Location: South Dakota
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I recall, from growing up in SFSD, the tales of an Indian legend that the area inside of the curve of the Sioux River was safe from tornadoes.

Take a look at an aerial view of SFSD. The natural river channel goes west of town more or less parallel to Kiwanis Ave, curves east south of 41st Street, heads north along Southeastern Drive, and bends along through downtown, over the falls, the heads back east and then on down south along the Iowa border.

Stay inside the curve around SFSD and you'll be safe. At least in the over 100 years my family lived inside the "loop" of the river we never had any tornado trouble! Now floods were a different story, though the US Army Corp of Engineers pretty much took care of that with the dikes and diversion channel and spillway.
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