January 2023 tornado activity way ahead of normal

MONTGOMERY, Alabama (WSFA) – Alabama has had a very active month of severe weather so far. Our state has been ravaged by two separate tornado outbreaks, each causing many tornadoes in central Alabama.

The most recent tornado on January 12 included 13 tornadoes, many of which were “strong.” That is, they were rated EF-2 or better. This is something you don’t see very often in January.

Tornadoes have been reported since 2010 in January.(WSFA 12 News)

Tornadoes will definitely hit Alabama and the Deep South in January (see map under Tornado Archives). However, in January he had two outbreaks and a handful of powerful tornadoes, which is unusual. It also pushes the unprecedented category of EF-3 long track tornadoes in January.

Overall, the United States has reported 124 tornadoes so far in 2023. Of those, Alabama owns 48 of her. What’s the next tallest state? Georgia 21 years old. Active and busy is an understatement.

I want to emphasize the fact that these numbers represent tornadoes report Until January 18th. Reports differ from actual tornadoes. The number of reports is often higher than the actual number of tornadoes. It’s still fair to use tornado reports to see how busy a particular month or year is.

All US tornadoes from 1875 to 2021.
All US tornadoes from 1875 to 2021.(tornado archive)

As an overview, January is the only month since 2000 that has had more than 100 tornado reports. So January 2023 is certainly near the top when it comes to tornado activity across the country, and he’s also one of the most active months Alabama has ever seen.

Alabama witnessed the most tornadoes in January, followed by Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. Same for February, March and April.

These winter and spring months bring severe weather and tornadoes across the Southeast and Gulf Coast. This is due to its close proximity to the Gulf of Mexico and the abundance of humidity. Combined with moving systems, it provides the necessary wind shear and instability for tornado-like thunderstorms.

It’s impossible to say what the rest of January will bring. It is even more impossible to say what February, March and April will bring. But if history is any indicator, there’s no doubt we’ll see more tornadoes in Alabama. It’s important to stay on top of the forecast.

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