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This is a map of the heart of Tornado Alley in the USA, where there is a high incidence of deadly tornadoes.
Tornado Alley extends from central Texas northward to Illinois and Indiana. The heart of Tornado Alley includes parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, eastern Colorado, and South Dakota. Less intense areas of Tornado Alley incude parts of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Iowa, Tennessee, Kentucky, Wisconsin, and Minnesota.
Texas has more tornadoes than any other state in the USA, but Oklahoma has the most dangerous storms (F4 and F5 storms).
Note: There is some dispute as to which states are in Tornado Alley. The map above is based on information from the NOAA /US National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center.
Why Does Tornado Alley Get So Many Tornadoes?
Conditions in tornado alley are favorable for tornado formation. During the summer, the plains of Middle America get very hot (creating updrafts) and there are many thunderstorms. Tornadoes form during thunderstorms, when unstable hot air near the ground rises and meets the cooler air above in the thunder clouds. Tornadoes can form at any time of the year, but most of them form from March to August (in the Northern Hemisphere).
Living in Tornado Alley
People who live in Tornado Alley are aware that tornadoes pose a potential danger for them. Building codes in these areas require that new buildings have strong roofs and a foundations that are tethered to the structure. Many people have storm cellars, underground shelters that protect people from a tornado. Many areas have neighborhood tornado sirens that warn people of imminent tornadoes.
Tornado Alley Activities for Early Readers:
Word Hunt Worksheet
How many words can you make using the letters from "Tornado Alley"? Sample answers: late, doll, yarn, ... Go to worksheet with 30 blanks or a worksheet with 50 blanks.
Tornado Quiz + Label Tornado Alley Printout
Answer five questions about tornadoes and label the states in the heart of Tornado Alley. Or go to the answers.
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