Natural hazards are extreme phenomena that pose a significant risk to the environment, the human social order, and the economy. They span a range of slow-onset phenomena like desertification and accelerated soil erosion to sudden impact events like earthquakes and lightning strikes. Human vulnerability is exploited by hazards to create risk, which, in the event of a disaster, results in losses (casualties, destruction, and damage). In this blog, we will tell you what other natural hazards are associated with tornado formation, and what are the types of natural hazards. And we will discuss what happens before a tornado forms.
1. What are the Types of Natural Hazards?
Types of natural hazards:
- Coastal flooding
- Cold wave
- Hurricane (tropical cyclone)
- Ice storm
- Riverine flooding
- Strong wind
- Volcanic activity
2. Which is an Example of Natural Hazard?
Natural disasters such as forest fires, floods, cyclones, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, drought, etc. are the best examples. To know what other natural hazards are associated with tornado formation, check out the next segments. (See What’s an Isolated Tornado?)
3. What Kind of Natural Hazard is a Tornado?
The collision of warm and cold air masses results in a tornado, which is a fiercely rotating column of air that extends from a thunderstorm to the ground. More than one mile wide and fifty miles long paths can be damaged by them. While the speed of tornadoes can range from almost stationary to up to 70 mph, the wind speed coming from these formations can reach over 250 mph. With the help of the Enhanced Fujita Scale, tornadoes are categorized. About 88% of tornadoes are rated as weak (EF0 or EF1), and 95% of tornadoes in the United States have an intensity below EF3.
4. What are the Causes of a Tornado?
Tornadoes are created by severe thunderstorms in the warm, unstable air that surrounds and precedes cold fronts. Large hail and damaging winds could result from these thunderstorms. When spring storm systems create broad, persistent areas that are conducive to tornado development, major outbreaks may result. (See How are Typhoons formed?)
5. What happens before a Tornado Forms?
Before a tornado forms, severe thunderstorms frequently produce lightning and thunder. It may be a very dark sky, occasionally with yellow or green clouds, either a whistling or a rumbling sound, may see a funnel-shaped cloud at the base of a thundercloud, frequently hidden by a heavy downpour or hail.
6. What is Associated with Tornado Formation?
Spinning air must be present close to the ground for a tornado to form. When storm air spreads out in gusts and sinks to the ground, this phenomenon takes place. As they blow across the land, warmer air gusts rise and cooler air gusts sink. (See What is an Example of a Geological Event?)
7. What other Natural Hazards are Associated with Tornado Formation?
Can you guess what other natural hazards are associated with tornado formation? Well, the risks are more complex than simply listing thunderstorms as a natural hazard linked to tornado formation, as is the case with many sources. Hail, lightning, and flooding are additional potential risks associated with thunderstorms. Any of these could pose a risk to people’s lives or property.
8. What are the Warning Signs that a Tornado may Occur?
Besides wondering what other natural hazards are associated with tornado formation, below is a list of the six warning signs that a tornado may occur:
- The sky could possibly take on a dark greenish hue.
- An eerie calm that occurs during or immediately following a thunderstorm.
- An audible boom, like a freight train
- A moving cloud of debris, especially one that is close to the ground.
- Sky-borne debris that is falling. An outgrowth of a thunderstorm that rotates like a funnel cloud.
9. What are the Stages of a Tornado?
The stages of a tornado are:
- Storm development: The warmth of the ground is transferred to the air near it by sunlight. Localized air pockets warm up to a higher temperature than their surroundings and start to rise. When cumulus clouds form, they develop into storm clouds (cumulonimbus)
- Storm organization: The thunderstorm updraught may start to rotate when the process takes place in a setting where winds increase significantly with height (strong vertical wind shear). This occurs as a result of the atmosphere spinning horizontally due to the strong wind shear. This rolling motion is tilted into the vertical by the strong updraught, creating a spin that resembles the rotation of a merry-go-round. Supercell thunderstorms have a deep rotation that is persistent.
- Tornado formation: Downdraughts, or dropping down the current flow of relatively cold, dense air support the spinning, and bring it down to lower levels within the supercell storm. The rotation may eventually become so tightly focused that a short column of air that is rapidly rotating starts forming. If this violently rotating column of air collides with the ground, a tornado is produced. The presence of a condensation funnel—a funnel-shaped cloud that forms as a result of the drastically reduced pressure inside the tornado vortex—allows observers to frequently see the tornado. The tornado may also become visible thanks to dust and other debris that the strong winds may have lifted.
- Tornado dissipation: A supply of warm air is eventually cut off as cold downdraughts encircle the tornado. During this phase, the tornado usually becomes more condensed before eventually losing its shape.
10. What are the Main Effects of Tornadoes?
The main effects of tornadoes are:
- Environmental contamination
- Injuries and Loss of life
- Household Hazardous Waste
- Economic loss
- Destruction of vegetation
- Flash Flooding
- Effects on the ecosystem
- Asbestos Debris
- Forest Fires
- Psychological effects
11. In What Two Ways does a Tornado Cause Damage to Property?
Since you know what other natural hazards are associated with tornado formation, you must be aware that large structures can be destroyed, trees can be uprooted from their roots, and even vehicles can be launched hundreds of yards by a tornado. Some tornadoes have winds that are strong enough to blow straw into trees. (Also read What is the Elevation Effect on Climate?)