Tornado Alley’s eastwardly trek continues as more than two dozens have hit the region since Monday. This marks the third week in a row with deadly and destructive storms impacting the region. Ten of those killer twisters struck the Palmetto State Tuesday evening. One person was killed when a tornado hit Bryan County, Georgia Tuesday afternoon. Several homes and businesses were also extensively damaged in the recent line of storms. With tornado season still in its early stages, the region can expect even more death and destructive in the coming weeks. But wait, you must be thinking, “Did I read that right? I thought tornadoes only hit Tornado Alley? That is its name after all, right?” As Tornado Alley shifts from the Midwest, scientists are fearful what impact this will have on the nation.

By mapping the trajectory and frequencies of killer tornadoes over the years, meteorologists have come to a disturbing conclusion. Tornado Alley appears to be slowly moving from the Midwest to the Deep South. Whether it’s just a natural phenomenon or the product of Climate Change, scientists have taking note of this alarming trend. What’s particularly unnerving is the fact that the majority of the south’s population is woefully ill-prepared for tornadoes. While the Gulf States and Carolinas are no strangers to severe weather, tornadoes have remained an anomaly until now. As a result of the historical low propensity for damage, many southern residents have opted against tornado protection.

In the Dead of Night

Tornadoes can strike with little warning and don’t abide by any earthly time constraints, but it appears these storms prefer to target the south just after midnight. This creates a precarious situation as most inhabitants are already in deep sleep mode. On average, residents only have a few minutes to seek shelter once the tornado sirens begin to ring, so sleepy homeowners remain at an innate disadvantage when the storms hit. Some victims never even knew what it hit them as the tornadoes rip through homes with reckless abandon. Topography also presents tornadoes with the upper hand as the south’s rolling hills, crowded with dense forestry, makes spotting these twisters very difficult, especially in the dead of night.

NOAA records dating to 1950 show that tornado activity has increased in the Southeast since the late 1990s and that the trend—and death toll—has accelerated in recent years. Since January 2019, 99 of the nation’s 120 tornado-related deaths occurred in the Southeast, NOAA records show. That’s 83%.

tornado alley shifts

Scary facts about twisters in the south

  • The Southeast’s rolling hills and thick forests conceal tornadoes from spotters and the public.
  • Most deadly tornadoes across at night, when victims are sound asleep in their beds.
  • Few southern homes have basements, which makes unprotected residents particularly vulnerable to killer storms.
  • Deaths in mobile homes are responsible for a disproportionately high amount of tornado fatalities. Unfortunately, trailers have become fact-of-life in economically depressed areas, such as the south.
  • Someone in a mobile home is 15 to 20 times more likely to be killed during a tornado than someone in a home with a foundation.

Don’t risk your life by seeking shelter in a mobile home, invest in above ground tornado shelter from U.S. Safe Room

Many residents have taken notice as tornado alley shifts to the southeast. Not too long ago, a concerned customer in Alabama sent us a Facebook message about our line of safe room storm shelters. She was growing increasingly concerned about the frequency of tornadoes in her area, and rightfully so. Out of sheer desperation, she inquired about possibly installing a panelized safe room in her mobile home. We strongly advised against it. Any qualified engineer knows that retrofitting a metal pre-fabricated mobile home will undoubtedly compromise the residence’s structural integrity. In other words, installing large steel plates into a weaker structure, such as a trailer, can fragment and irreparable damage to the home and its load bearing walls. Instead, we recommended an above ground tornado shelter that could be installed next to the trailer on a concrete pad.