Tornadoes rarely occur in California because of the state's dry climate and low thunderstorm rate. According to the Tornado Project, California experienced approximately 300 tornadoes between 1950 and 2014. Californian tornadoes are generally small, weak and occur in California's Central Valley.Continue Reading
According to TheWeatherPrediction.com, tornadoes spawn from thunderstorms. Thunderstorms form when warm, moist air that collides with a cooler, drier air mass. This happens frequently in the flat plains region of the central United States nicknamed "Tornado Alley." This region receives large amounts of warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico. The shear forces become stronger with a greater difference in temperature and humidity. The moist air California receives from the Pacific Ocean is much colder. Consequently, California experiences fewer thunderstorms, and therefore fewer tornadoes, compared to states such as Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.
Tornadoes occasionally spawn in other parts of the United States. Like California, the states in the Great Lakes region are generally too dry and too cold to support tornado formation for most of the year. Southeastern states, such as Florida, are extremely humid and famous for frequent, heavy thunderstorms. Despite its heat and humidity, the area rarely experiences tornadoes because cold fronts rarely penetrate it.Learn more about Storms
California became the 31st state to join the Union in September of 1850, and is famous for the Gold Rush that occurred in the 19th century, which is the origin of the state's nickname, the Golden State. California is the nation's leading producer of many different types of fruits, such as grapes, strawberries, plums, peaches, avocados, dates and nectarines.Full Answer >
The dangers of tornadoes include flying debris that can destroy property and injure people, and violent winds that lift vehicles and rip off roofs. The primary danger of tornadoes is the flying debris, as this often destroys and injures more than what the winds pick up.Full Answer >
Strong warm updrafts carrying large amounts of moisture interacting with fast-moving cool, dry winds above cause tornadoes when the two air currents begin to swirl around each other and reorient toward the ground. The moist updraft is always of a type that forms large storm clouds as it ascends and the water vapor in it condenses.Full Answer >
The people who study tornadoes and all other weather patterns and phenomena are called research meteorologists. Amateurs who follow and record tornado-producing storms as a hobby or for personal study are called storm chasers.Full Answer >