Tuscaloosa’s Tornado Alley…Look Back at Tornado Paths… Update: Feb 23, 2017 #alwx @wvua23

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On this date in 1975, an F-4 tornado ripped right through the middle of Tuscaloosa, killing one and injuring nearly 50. The tornado took a path from the current Shelton State location north northeast into the current University Mall area and into Holt. Since my post on this tornado earlier this morning, I have got tons of questions on past tornadoes that have hit Tuscaloosa directly, so I decided to do a little digging. If you’ve lived in the Tuscaloosa area for a number of years, you probably have heard stories of how Tuscaloosa is its own tornado alley. After looking back at all tornadoes reported since 1920 in the range from EF-1 to EF-5 or the previous F scale, I found something very troubling.

I plotted the exact track lengths, width and colored intensity of every tornado stronger than an EF-0 that impacted the Tuscaloosa area. The map above shows a jumbled looking mess. It is nearly impossible to discern the difference between some tornado paths, as multiple paths overlap. I also added the date to each tornado track. Nearly every square inch of the city of Tuscaloosa has been impacted by atleast one tornado since 1920. That means, if you are in your 90s and have lived in Tuscaloosa your entire life, at some point you likely had damage or lost your property to a tornado. I lost my home and belongings to the Tuscaloosa tornado of April 27, 2011… Not only has a large portion of Tuscaloosa been impacted directly by a tornado, most of the tornadoes were at EF-3 or stronger.

Does this mean more strong to violent tornadoes will hit Tuscaloosa in the years to come? According to statistics, absolutely. However, the atmosphere does not follow statistics and anything is possible. There’s no doubt all of west and central Alabama is in a tornado prone zone. Any time we have a risk of severe weather across portions of Alabama, it is always a good idea to have a plan and be ready. We could have another big tornado looming at any time…

For more updates, go to the weather blog at wvua23.com, scroll to the weather tab and click weather blog. Updates are also on our Facebook and Twitter page. My twitter is @RichardWVUA23 and facebook is WVUA23RichardScott

Join us live on WVUA23 weekdays at 5, 6 and 10:00 P.M. and weekends at 10PM for the very latest on your news, weather and sports.

Richard Scott
WVUA Chief Meteorologist
rscott@wvua23.com
Twitter: RichardWVUA23
Facebook: WVUA23RichardScott

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Very Mild Now… Cooler Weekend… Thursday Forecast Update – 5:30pm #alwx @wvua23

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Good Thursday afternoon! Our local weather started off gloomy in many areas early this morning, but sunshine has mixed out across all of west and central Alabama. Temperatures warmed well into the 70s this afternoon, and that is a good 10 to 15 degrees above average. Patchy fog is possible tonight, but widespread fog is not likely.

Upper level ridging will really pump up over the southeast on Friday, sending temperatures into the low 80s across most of west and central Alabama. I don’t expect any rain during the day on Friday, but showers will become possible Friday evening after 9pm, ending after midnight Friday night.

Cooler air will take over this weekend, with highs struggling to reach 60 on Saturday and a chilly north breeze. Temperatures will drop into the low 30s Saturday night, as a surface high moves over the area. A light frost is a good possibility for many areas. Look for plenty of sunshine on Sunday, with a high in the lower 60s.

A weak surface low and upper air trough axis will influence out local weather on Monday, with a good chance of occasional rain. Rain will remain possible on Tuesday and Wednesday, as the front stalls across our local area. There are some big model differences in how much rain we get, but it is possible conditions get rather wet early next week. Temperatures will modify into the 70s on Monday through Wednesday.

For more updates, go to the weather blog at wvua23.com, scroll to the weather tab and click weather blog. Updates are also on our Facebook and Twitter page. My twitter is @RichardWVUA23 and facebook is WVUA23RichardScott

Join us live on WVUA23 weekdays at 5, 6 and 10:00 P.M. and weekends at 10PM for the very latest on your news, weather and sports.

Richard Scott
WVUA Chief Meteorologist
rscott@wvua23.com
Twitter: RichardWVUA23
Facebook: WVUA23RichardScott