Hasn’t the weather been wacky here in Georgia the last few weeks? As I write this with six inches of snow on the ground, I thought about the month of March. In Georgia, the month of March has given us a blizzard (1993), snow and tornadoes. Tornado season in Georgia is from March through May. According to the National Weather Service, we see more tornadoes during the month of April than any other month.
The damage and strength of tornadoes fascinate many people. Who hasn’t watched Twister and been in awe of the strength of the tornado? For those who are fascinated or others who just want to know more about tornadoes, the Library has many books and a few movies.
For the person just wanting to know the facts, there is Tornadoes by Michael Allaby . This book gives all the basics about tornadoes from how they form, how they measure the intensity and measure the damage. Until this year, I had never remembered hearing about the EF (Enhanced Fujita) scale. This book and the National Weather Service explain how this enhanced scale measures not only the intensity of a tornado but also the damage it produced.
For the person who just loves the chase, the Library has Big Weather: Chasing Tornadoes in the Heart of America by Mark Stenvold. This book takes a look at chasing tornadoes through the eye of a storm chaser. Although the book is non-fiction it reads like a novel and keeps you glued to the pages.
For the person who likes to understand the human side of nature, there is F5:Devastation, Survival, and the Most Violent Tornado Outbreak of the Twentieth Century by Mark Levine. This book also reads like a novel. It looks at the day in 1974 that saw the most tornadoes spawn across several states. There were 148 tornadoes on April 2, 1974. The author interviewed many people who experienced the tornado outbreak. The author tells each story from what they were doing that day to the experience of living through a tornado.
For the person who likes to experience things visually, the Library has Hunt for the Supertwister. This documentary looks at storm chasers trying to find that F5 tornado.
Here are some pictures taken a few weeks ago when a EF2 that touched down and stayed on the ground for close to 10 miles. Although not as impressive as damage to houses, you can see the 1/4 mile wide swath it made through forested land in Jasper County, Georgia.