By comparison, the
The 1969 storm, which came five years before the notorious EF5 tornado that struck
The estimated financial loss was a hotly debated topic, with city officials claiming losses in the millions of dollars and insurance adjusters estimating total losses of around
Officials have not provided a monetary estimate of losses from the
The '69 twister formed suddenly when a cold front clashed with warm air to the west of
Storm Center 7's Chief Meteorologist
During the warmer months, warm air is layered above and below a layer of cold air called the "cap." Vrydaghs said severe storms can be sparked when the cold air layer is warmed or is pushed into the warm air layers by a cold front.
"You can have a bright sunny day, then all of a sudden you have cumulus clouds and then all of a sudden you have these isolated strong storms.," Vrydaghs said.
There's a perception that more tornadoes are occurring in modern times when compared to the mid 20th century, but Vrydaghs said that may not be true.
"Back in the 1950s, '60s, '70s we didn't have the same technologies, so tracking tornadoes back then, unless it was daylight and someone saw it, or perhaps we saw it on old radars, we may not have known if the damage was tornadic or straight line winds," she said.
Vrydaghs added that research shows there is a trend of more tornadoes occurring on fewer days.
"We're seeing less days with tornadoes throughout the year, but on any given day when we do have a tornado, there seems to be more," Vrydaghs said. "We have yet to find a direct link as to why there has been this shift, but there has been a shift."
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