Fall weather beautiful, but look out for sneaky storms

The leaves are changing colors and the temperature outside is refreshing. In short, it’s a simply gorgeous time of year.

But let’s not be completely lulled to sleep by nature’s autumn beauty. Many do not realize it, but fall has the potential to bring some of the year’s most severe weather to our area.

Did you know that, according to the National Weather Service, 20 percent of all reported tornadoes in Alabama between 2001 and 2011 came in either November or December? Seasons change. Out with the warm, in with the cold. The change-over can turn violent. The same can be said of the reciprocal transition in the spring.

Did you know that 6 percent of tornado-related deaths and 10 percent of tornado-related injuries in Alabama happened between 2001 and 2011?

November and December can be more than just the holiday season.

We’ve seen nature’s fall wrath right here in our backyard. Turn the clock back to Nov. 16, 2011, as a small tornado wreaked havoc in central Auburn and into Opelika and the Lake Harding area, wrecking a number of homes and blowing down a number of trees.

Turn the clock back to the morning of Nov. 24, 2004, when a tornado touched down in east Opelika near the old Uniroyal plant, damaging homes and knocking down trees. Again, there were no reported injuries. This storm was one of 21 tornadoes across central Alabama that day.

Many refer to late winter and spring as tornado season in Alabama. Who can forget the events of April 27, 2011, and many other devastating spring tornadoes in our state’s past? But fall is Alabama’s second tornado season. It’s shorter, but just as dangerous.

Wednesday was Fall Severe Weather Awareness Day in Alabama, as sponsored by the National Weather Service. The NWS encourages all families to develop a storm preparation plan to keep ahead of severe weather and to keep safe. For more information, check out the NWS’ website at http://1.usa.gov/QSyJcR.

More Safety Info:

  1. April 2011 Tornadoes
  2. Free home safety program focuses on fall prevention
  3. Supercell storms, possible tornadoes reported in Plains states
  4. Hawaii the Target of Unrelenting Downpours, Severe Storms
  5. Violent weather pounds southern Kansas


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