58,398 tornadoes mapped

Spring marks the start of the peak season for tornadoes in the USA. Several states have already had severe storm warnings this year.

Using the NCDC storm database, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) visualization lab put together a graphic plotting the location of every recorded event 1950-2010. Click through to see the hi res image. Note: the slightly gridded appearance is an artifact caused by earlier tornadoes having latitude and longitude rounded to degrees and minutes.

Map showing every recorded tornado in the US, 1950-2010

Credit: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

Some key facts:

  • The U.S. is the most active area in the world for tornadoes
  • The highest concentration of events occurs in Tornado Alley, running from Texas through North Dakota.
  • Every state has had at least one event, including Alaska (3) and Hawaii (28).
  • Many tornadoes don’t touch land and aren’t recorded here , especially those from the early days.

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