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A Tornado known as a twister is a violent and very dangerous rotating column of air that is in contact with the surface of the earth and cumulonimbus clouds. Tornadoes come in different shapes and sizes and they mainly form a condensation funnel. The narrow end touches the earth and is encircled by a cloud of debris and dust. Wind speedsof a tornado can be any where from 110 miles per hour or more than 300 mph. Tornadoes are classified as F1 to F5 depending on the severity.
Types Of Tornadoes
Many of us think of a tornado as being one on the ground but there are many different types of tornadoes. There are waterspouts, land spouts, gustnados, dust devil, fire whirls and steam devils.
Multiple Vortex is a type of tornado in which two or more columns of spinning air rotate around a common center. The multiple vortex can occur with almost any circulation but is often seen in an intense tornado.
Waterspout And Landspout
A waterspout is a tornado that occurs over water. These tornadoes mainly happen over subtropical waters like Florida keys and Northern Adriatic Sea. These tornadoes are long lived and very intense and faster. These are far more dangerous than your fair weather water spout.
A Landspout and a waterspout are about the same. Landspouts create a laminar dust of cloud and they can have strong winds that could cause sever damage.
Gustnado and Dust Devils
A Gustnado is a small vertical swirl that's associated with a down burst. Kind of like a Micro Burst which are seen a lot in the state Of Arizona. Gustnados there not sure if they would classify them as a tornado due to the fact there not connected with a cloud base. Gustnados usually cause wind damage.
Dust Devils look like a tornado but it's a vertical column of air. It's an updraft that's formed near the ground on a hot clear day. Dust Devils are seen a lot out west also especially in the state of Arizona. Dust Devils are weak and Arizonans drive right through them when there crossing over a road but don't be fooled these dust devils while driving through them can move your car.
Fire Whirls normally occur near an intense surface heat source like a forest fire. These storms are very rare but they are a catastrophic form of fire. Fire Whirls are columns of ascending air with rotational motion which carry smoke,debris and flames. There basically like a dark tornado you see on the ground but the funnel cloud is nothing but flames as it's twisting.
Safety During A Tornado
There are precautions and preventive measures that a person can take to survive a tornado. Make a plan on what to do if a tornado strikes. Listen and watch the news to see if a warning has been issued. If a warning has been issued get into a basement or an interior first floor room of a sturdy building greatly increases your survival chances. If there is no shelter then get down into a ditch is the next best option, never seek shelter under an highway overpass. Overpasses create an venturi effect, which increases the wind speed and debris under an overpass.
Tornadoes are scary because they can appear without warning but follow the safety measures and you and your family should make it out OK.