In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, a massive tornado has struck Mississippi. Rather, it was a series of tornadoes. These tornadoes caused widespread damage in the northeastern part of the state. The storm devastated the region. It leveled a Dollar General and damaged several buildings.
Tornado Causes Damage in Tishomingo
The tornado was part of a larger severe storm system that rolled through the Southeast Tuesday night and into Wednesday morning. Thankfully, the small town of Tishomingo, where the tornado caused the most damage, reported only minor injuries from the storm’s path. While much of the damage was in rural, outlying areas, the tornado also caused considerable damage to many buildings.
The tornado reduced a Dollar General to rubble. Thankfully for residents’ homeowners insurance rates, the damage to residential areas was minor. The tornado did not hit any houses directly. However, residents are still contending with structural damage to roads and downed tree limbs blocking the road paths.
Storm Moves into Alabama
Into Tuesday evening, the storm continued on into Alabama over the Mississippi state line. It caused local weather agencies to issue tornado warnings and tell residents to seek shelter. The National Weather Service issued a bulletin, stating,
“At 5:41 p.m. CDT, a confirmed large and destructive tornado was observed near Tishomingo State Park, moving east at 45 mph.”
The very large tornado petered out over the course of a few hours. It thankfully caused little damage in Alabama before collapsing entirely. The thunderstorm system it was part of, however, continued on through the Southeast. It brought heavy rain and rumbling thunder through Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina.
Tornado Season in Full Swing
While much of the world grapples with the novel coronavirus, the Southeastern region known as Tornado Alley have other things to worry about. For one, the inspiration behind their region’s namesake.
Every year, spring through fall, Tornado Alley sees more tornadoes on average than anywhere else in the world.
This is due to a combination of factors. They include cold, dry air from Canada intermingling with warm, moist air from the Gulf. This conflux of rising and falling air patterns causes storm cells to form.
The largest of these can form supercells and vortex clouds. Vortex clouds, in turn, become tornadoes if they touch down to the ground level, resulting in a swath of destruction.
It’s not what anyone needs, especially now.