Tornadoes are a natural occurrence in many parts of the country, but they happen most often in Kansas. In fact, Kansas has more tornadoes than any other state! When is tornado season in Kansas? The answer to this question depends on how you define “tornado season”.
Table of Contents
What Month Has The Most Tornadoes In Kansas?
The tornado season in Kansas typically lasts from April to June. However, tornadoes can happen at any time of the year.
In fact, the strongest recorded wind speed was a tornado that happened near El Reno, Oklahoma on May 31st, 2013 at 2:57 pm with winds at 318 mph! Tornadoes are not all bad though because they help rid the atmosphere of excess heat and energy by releasing it upwards in a column of air called a ‘funnel cloud’.
There is no way to predict when or where a tornado will occur but luckily there are some things you can do to stay safe if one does come your way.
Tornadoes in Kansas – A Few Important Facts:
- Kansas is in the center of “Tornado Alley”. This area makes up a large swath of land from Texas to North Dakota and receives at least one hundred tornadoes each year;
- The peak time for Kansas tornadoes is April, but you can never predict when they will strike or how many there may be within that month. It’s important to stay inside if severe weather approaches your location;
- If you live in Kansas and want to know when the tornado may happen, don’t wait until the last minute. Instead, head over to your local weather news station for up-to-date information on when tornado season will be hitting;
Additional Facts about Tornadoes in Kansas:
Tornadoes in Kansas are common. The state averages around 50 tornadoes each year, though many of the twisters that touch down aren’t especially powerful. Most last just a few minutes and don’t leave much damage behind them. However, there have been some very notable exceptions to this rule over the years.
This has led many people to wonder when is tornado season in Kansas? With springtime coming up soon it’s best for homeowners who live on the plains near “Tornado Alley” to be aware of more than just what time they can get out their lawnmower or start planting flowers outside again! It also helps if you know about tornado safety precautions so you can protect from disaster should one happen.
Whatever the season, if you live in Kansas or anywhere that might be at risk for a tornado it’s crucial to stay informed about what you should do during one.
Kansas Tornadoes Per Year Statistics:
- On average, there are more than 50 tornadoes in Kansas each year;
- In 2014, there were 97 tornadoes reported;
- There are typically more than 100 tornado reports every year throughout the state of Kansas;
- The first recorded tornado in Kansas occurred on April 26, 1866;
- However, it is believed that tornadoes may have happened before this date;
The Tornado Warning System in Kansas
There are several different types of warnings in the tornado warning system. The first is a Tornado Watch, which means that conditions exist for severe thunderstorms and tornadoes to form. A watch indicates what areas will be affected by these storms so people can prepare themselves accordingly. When this happens, it’s best to stay tuned to local weather forecasts on television or radio as well as any outdoor sirens you might hear activated during this time period.
The next type of warning issued is called either a Tornado Warning or Severe Thunderstorm Warning depending upon whether there has been confirmed that at least one funnel cloud with rotating winds has reached the ground surface (ground level). If confirmed via reports from storm spotters have seen evidence of rotation within the storm, then the warning becomes a Tornado Warning.
If there is no evidence of rotation at ground level but conditions exist for such an event to occur (heavy rain and large hail), it becomes a Severe Thunderstorm Warning instead.
Here is how often the tornado warning system works in Kansas:
- Tornadoes in Topeka/Kansas City – when they form, the forecasts will be issued within 15 minutes;
- Southwest and Southeast Kansas: tornadoes can come up fast and without warning so stay alert during this time of year! It could result in dangerous conditions such as large hail or damaging winds coming through your area very quickly;
Tornadoes Can Happen Anywhere
Tornadoes happen all over the world. However, there are places that have a higher risk of being hit by tornadoes than others. Kansas is one place that you can expect to be hit by many tornadoes every year because it has an extremely high-frequency rate for them. The tornado season in Kansas starts as early as March and can last until November.
There are also other states around Kansas with high-risk areas of tornadoes, including Oklahoma, Nebraska, South Dakota, Texas, and Colorado.
Environmental Conditions in Kansas for Tornado Season
Tornado season in Kansas runs from March to June each year, with a peak period of activity occurring between May and June. The months leading up to these peak times are typically when the atmosphere becomes most favorable for tornado formation across much of North America. In general, warm air moves northward from tropical regions while cool air is pulled southwards by stronger winds at higher altitudes.
These two contrasting air masses interact along frontal boundaries where there can be strong wind shear that helps create conditions favorable for tornadoes. Additionally, warm moist Gulf of Mexico air moving towards Texas often interacts with the colder Canadian arctic front that contributes to further instability within the environment.
Where do most tornadoes occur in Kansas?
Most tornadoes in the state occur between May and August, with more than 50 occurring during this period every year on average. It’s important to realize that any region of the “Tornado Alley” can experience a tornado at any time.
Where is “Tornado Alley” in Kansas?
The area commonly referred to as “Tornado Alley” consists of a large section of the Great Plains stretching from Northern Texas through Nebraska and into South Dakota.
It includes portions of western Kansas near the towns of Dodge City and Garden City.
Tornado Alley is in the northern region of Kansas. It covers most of north-central through northeast areas, including Ellis, Russell, and Ellsworth counties.
How long does tornado season last in Kansas?
Tornado season in Kansas lasts from April through June. The month with the most tornadoes in May. In fact, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), on average there are 103 reported twisters each year in that span of time. That number varies widely, however; it can be as few as one or two a year or up to several hundred annually depending upon conditions including moisture content in the soil which affects how much energy storms generate when they form.
What are 5 warning signs that a tornado may occur?
If you are in the path of a tornado, there are certain things that may give away its presence. Here are five warning signs to be on the lookout for:
- Large hail. The hail larger than an inch is strong enough to break windows and damage roofs! If you’re outside during this time it could cause injury so seek shelter immediately;
- Dark sky. Tornadoes can happen at any hour – but they tend to occur more frequently around sunrise or sunset when skies look darker. It’s important not to ignore dark clouds forming overhead because these conditions indicate something else out of the ordinary might be happening – like a potential thunderstorm with wind gusts up 80 miles per hour capable of causing massive destruction;
- Wall cloud. Tornadoes can be hard to spot. A wall cloud is a rotating column of air much bigger than the width of your average tornado, but not as tall or strong looking as its more dangerous cousin “the funnel”. Wall clouds are an ominous sign that something’s brewing and it could mean you should take cover;
- Loud thunder. The sound that thunder makes can range from a soft, rumbling roar to an explosion so loud it’s capable of rattling windows. But don’t let the noise fool you! Although they often accompany rain and lightning storms, tornadoes themselves are usually nearly silent – but this doesn’t mean one isn’t headed your way;
- Low-pressure system. It is another sign something dangerous could be coming your way;
How many F5 tornadoes have hit Kansas?
Kansas averages about a dozen tornadoes each year but has been hit with as many as 77 in one season.
In 1879 and 1880, there were 3 F-five twisters that touched down on the land of Sunflower State residents.
Kansas has been first in the United States for a total number of 7 F5/EF5 tornadoes since 1950.
The last major tornado to strike the state was an EF-four that ripped through Topeka back in 1991. While it’s not rare for Kansas to have this kind of weather happen throughout spring, it is unusual whenever multiple funnel clouds touch down at once.
What was the worst tornado in Kansas?
On May 25, 1955, a tornado hit Udall, Kansas, which would become the deadliest in the state’s history. An F-5 twister destroyed Udall and killed 80 people while injuring more than 200 others. The region had been under siege for three days, one of which struck Oklahoma and killed 20 people.
Why does Kansas have so many tornadoes?
Kansas is in the path of multiple major storm systems that are part of the North American Monsoon. The dry plains heat up during late spring and early summer, which creates unstable air masses creating powerful thunderstorms with high winds, large hail, heavy rain, flash flooding, and tornadoes.
These conditions may last through July or August when monsoons typically end. This usually results in about 40-50 tornadoes per year on average but can be as low as 20 to 30 or as many as 80+ depending on weather patterns and other factors (such as wind shear).
Tornado season in Kansas can vary due to many factors. The warmest months are usually June, July, and August with the highest number of tornadoes typically occurring between April and September when maximum temperatures range from 80-95F.
Another factor is wind shear – winds that change speed or direction over short distances that may increase chances for tornado development. This occurs across eastern Colorado, western Kansas, Oklahoma panhandle region into northwest Texas during spring through summer every year causing an average of 70 tornadoes per year in this area alone.