Tornado Quest Top Ten Science Links For May 25 – June 1, 2019

Greetings to everyone and Happy Meteorological Summer to my followers and friends in the Northern Hemisphere! It’s also the official first day of the Atlantic hurricane season. May was a wild weather month for much of the Great Plains in the USA with substantial numbers of tornadoes and record breaking floods across much of the Arkansas River basin. Many more topics to cover this week, so let’s get started.

  1. The planet Mars is a very dusty location with our amazing rovers getting a thorough covering of Martian dust in short order. Fortunately, there’s a solution.
  2. An amazing discover that gives us a look back in time. “This Seawater Is 20,000 Years Old, and Has Remained Untouched Since the Last Ice Age.”
  3. Wildfires can devastate areas that are full of homes, businesses, and other populated areas. When looked at from a nature perspective, they truly are a very normal part of how our planet operates.
  4. I’d like to this this was in jest, but it’s not. Apparently, changing a name makes all the difference in the world. Not.
  5. This gives new meaning to the phrase, “cooking the books.” “E.P.A. Plans to Get Thousands of Pollution Deaths Off the Books by Changing Its Math.”
  6. In recent years, climate discussions have rarely centered around the Earth’s ozone layer. New studies have begun to focus on this very important part of our planet’s atmosphere.
  7. As a climate researcher, should I change my air-travel habits?” Personally speaking, I wouldn’t and feel this is a subject that many are taking far too seriously.
  8. These ideas should be implemented in other USA states as well. “Louisiana has a new plan to prevent flood disasters.”
  9. Recent global weather patterns have led to the above average number of tornadoes across much of the USA’s Great Plains. Here’s a concise read on why this happened.
  10. Here’s a more detailed look at the May 2019 tornado activity across the USA. This month is certainly going to be one for the record books.


Here are some links and infographics that will provide a starting point for gathering online severe weather information. I hope you find plentiful information here that will help you become better prepared as we navigate one of the most volatile climactic seasons on our planet.

Testing your NOAA weather radio year round is one of the best ways to stay informed on weather conditions for your area regardless of the season. Many National Weather Service offices conduct weekly tests. It’s also a good idea to replace the batteries in your NOAA weather radio when you change batteries in your smoke/carbon monoxide detectors.

Infographic courtesy NOAA/NWS

When severe weather is forecast, it is assigned a risk category. Hazards exist in all categories, hence it’s important to be aware of all of them. Note: tornadoes can and do occur even in Marginal Risk areas…and a Slight Risk does not mean that storms will be “slightly” severe.

Infographic courtesy NOAA/NWS

After thunderstorms form, they are carefully observed with Doppler Radar. This infographic explains how this amazing technology works and how its progressed over the years.

Infographic courtesy NOAA/NWS

When severe weather is anticipated, a Severe Thunderstorm or Tornado Watch will be issued. It’s very important to know the difference between a Watch and a Warning.

Infographic courtesy NWS Amarillo, Texas
Infographic courtesy NOAA/NWS

If a TORNADO WARNING is issued, it means you need to take cover immediately. Where you take cover can sometimes be a life-or-death situation.

Infographic courtesy NOAA/NWS
Infographic courtesy NWS Norman, OK

If a TORNADO WARNING is issued and you are in the warned area, there are good options and bad options for taking shelter. The choice can sometimes be a life-and-death decision. Bad options have killed countless people in recent years. One of the most onerous and dangerous behaviors during severe weather is the practice of “sheltering’ under an overpass. Under no circumstances should anyone engage in this life-threatening activity.

Infographic courtesy NOAA/NWS

One of the most onerous and dangerous behaviors during severe weather is the practice of “sheltering’ under an overpass. Under no circumstances should anyone engage in this life-threatening activity.

Infographic courtesy NWS Norman, OK

Here are more links that will help you prepare and stay informed during the severe weather season.

National Weather Service Homepage

Storm Prediction Center

National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center

NOAA Weather Radio

Interactive NOAA Weather Radio Coverage Map

Sky Watcher Cloud Chart: An excellent 2 page PDF file from NOAA and NASA on cloud types and and information on how clouds form.

Tornadoes, Lightning, & Thunderstorms: Nature’s Most Violent Storms (PDF file)

Tornado Safety Rules from the Storm Prediction Center

Highway Overpasses As Tornado Shelters (Slide Presentation)

The Online Tornado FAQ

Facts About Derechos

American Red Cross Severe Weather Safety Information

Flash Flooding: Turn Around, Don’t Drown

Preparing Your Pets For Disasters And Emergencies Basic Disaster Supply Kit Info

This excellent Emergency Kit checklist from the American Red Cross is very helpful in assisting you while you compile items for your kit. A kit like this should be available year round…there are many winter weather scenarios where the same items will come in handy.

Infographic courtesy American Red Cross

Please keep in mind that ONLY your local National Weather Service office, NOAA Weather Radio, or reliable broadcast media are the BEST sources of important, timely, and potentially life-saving weather information, watches, and warnings! None of the links on this page should be used for life-&-death decisions or the protection of property!

That’s a wrap for this post! To my new followers, I’d like to extend a very sincere “Welcome” and thank you for being a part of the fun. For my long-time followers, your loyalty is deeply appreciated. Thanks so much for the support and kind words!


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