A lot of explanations around how storms form and behave are myths. It all started years and years ago when we didn’t know how the world worked. Even though we now have a much better understanding of science, those beliefs are still very much present. After all, it comes down to what we learned from our grandparents, right? It’s important that you know how to be safe during a tornado and also how to keep your family safe. Here are 5 myths around about tornadoes:
MYTH#1: DURING A TORNADO, YOU’RE SAFER UNDER A BRIDGE
NO! Absolutely not!
People often think you are safer because the bridge would protect you, but the opposite is true. The tornado can blast debris underneath the bridge’s structure. Or even worse, the bridge could collapse on top of you!
If by any chance you are on the road when a tornado strikes, you should not be either in your car or beneath a bridge. Your car can be easily destroyed. In this case, if the tornado is far away from you, drive in the opposite direction. However, if it’s bearing down on you, you should try and find a sturdy structure nearby to hide.
MYTH #2: ONLY CERTAIN PROVINCES ARE SUSCEPTIBLE TO TORNADOES
If you thought that only places that are dry or very sunny are susceptible to tornados, think again.
Canada has around 62 reports of tornadoes every year, according to Environment Canada. It’s important to mention that Canada does not have an established tornado-prone zone, like the U.S.'s Tornado Alley, but they usually occur in southern Saskatchewan and Alberta as well as through southwestern Ontario.
According to David Sills, a weather scientist from Environment Canada, tornadoes are most common during summer months, but they can happen any time as long as the “ingredients come together.”
MYTH #3: TORNADOES CAN’T CROSS MOUNTAINS
The truth is that tornadoes are not directed based on roads, hills, mountains, or rivers. In fact, they have been documented in the mountains, for example, in Mississippi (US). Another example was the Teton-Yellowstone tornado that touched down in July 1987 in the US.
MYTH #4: YOU SHOULD OPEN YOUR WINDOWS DURING A TORNADO?
You might have never heard about this before, but it was actually considered common knowledge for a while! It was believed that unless you opened your house up, the high pressure of a tornado would push out the house, exploding it.
According to AccuWeather, “because of the intense power of a tornado, it is best to seek shelter underground in a basement, or in a room with no windows altogether. Opening them only creates a portal through which more debris can enter your home”.
MYTH #5 – TORNADOES CAN’T STRIKE CITIES
Tornados can develop anywhere.
The only reason they are more frequent in open land is because cities are smaller. Besides that, cities that are more favourable for tornados usually is less populated. For example, according to CNN, Oklahoma City was hit by an F5 tornado in May 1999, leaving 36 people dead
Emergency Management & Training Inc.
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