By Steven Strouss
This week has been a wild one across the Midwest and the Southern United States. Since Tuesday there have been over 100 tornado reports which have claimed over a dozen lives and destroyed millions in property.
Hardest hit states include; Illinois, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee and Indiana. Schools, homes and businesses were demolished by super-cell thunderstorms this afternoon and over 10 states had counties under tornado warnings at one point today.
Tornado outbreaks are more common in April and May but we are coming out of one of the mildest winters in US history and that is likely part of the blame for this early March threat. Tornadoes form when warm moist air collides with cold polar air.
A trigger such as a cold front or an active jet stream can produce large changes in wind direction and wind speed with height and this helps a thunderstorm rotate which ultimately can spawn a tornado with destructive consequences.
Lets hope that this early season outbreak is not a sign of things to come.
2011 was one of the worst tornado seasons ever with over 550 fatalties which is the second highest in a US history only behind the year 1925.