The damage a tornado can do varies on the size, strength and location. A mile-wide tornado with 200-mph winds can level an entire town, whereas a small tornado with 80-mph winds in an unpopulated area may cause no damage at all.
Some examples of the damage tornadoes can cause include leveling homes, flipping mobile homes upside down, toppling large trees, picking up cars and dropping them miles away from their original location, and pushing metal shards into tree trunks. The worst damage a tornado can cause, however, is to the lives of the people involved, since injuries and fatalities are common when a tornado hits.
One example of the damage a large tornado can do is the April 27, 2011 Hackleburg, Ala., tornado. The size of the tornado was over a mile wide, and the tornado reached wind speeds of 210 mph, according to the National Weather Service. A total of 72 people lost their lives in Hackleburg. Many of the homes in the town were destroyed, as well as businesses, several schools and a Wrangler factory. It was reported that jeans from the factory were found over 50 miles away. Parts of several roads were picked up and thrown by the tornado.Learn More
The sound a tornado makes depends on what it is hitting as well as its size, its intensity and its proximity to the listener. The most frequent sound reported is of a loud rumble akin to a train.Full Answer >
According to The Weather Channel, a tornado is "a violently rotating column of air that stretches from a cloud to the Earth's surface." The source also states that tornadoes are "the most destructive of all storm-scale atmospheric phenomena." Often forming from a thunderstorm, tornadoes also result from hurricanes.Full Answer >
A tornado path, or the width of the tornado on the ground, can range from as small as 10 yards to in excess of a mile. Widths can vary greatly even over the life of a single tornado, as each individual twister often undergoes rapid changes.Full Answer >
Strong winds, hail and flying debris make being inside a tornado dangerous, but those who survive the experience claim it to be surprisingly calm and quiet. Near-constant lightning reportedly gives the interior of tornadoes a glow.Full Answer >