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Storm chasers, Storm damage, Wind energy, Atmospheric science facilities, Wind, Weather Explanations, Thunderstorm, Tornado
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|Title: The ORIGINAL Fujita Scale|
Concept: Inlcuded for historical reference, this is the Fujita scale used until 2007.
Detail: There is a new ENHANCED Fujita Scale (the EF scale).
Please see the Storm Prediction Center for details:
In an attempt to estimate the power of tornadoes, Professor T. Theodore Fujita
of the University of Chicago along with Allan Pearson, then Director of the National Severe Storms
Forecast Center, developed anintensity scale for tornadoes in 1971. It is
rather like the tornadic equivalent of the Richter scale for
earthquakes. There are six categories ranging from F0-F5. The wind
speeds are necessarily estimates, since wind measuring equipment in the
path of a tornado, usually does not survive. Fully 53% of all reported
tornadoes are in the F-0 or F-l class. F-l is the most commonly reported
intensity with wind speeds somewhat over 100 miles per hour. Fully 63
percent of all tornadoes are reported as "weak," that is F-2 and F-3 with
wind speeds between 113 and 206 miles per hour. The maxi-tornadoes are
F-4 and F-5, with wind speeds perhaps approaching 300 miles per hour or
slightly greater. They constitute only 2% of the total tornadoes
reported. However, the maxi-tornadoes due to their tremendous size,
width, longevity and intensity, account for 68% of the fatalities.
Fortunately, current tornado detection techniques, including conventional
radar, are most likely to detect the maxi-tornado. It is the small
short-lived F-0 and F-l tornadoes which are very hard to detect, and,
therefore, most likely to strike without an appropriate warning.
Note: In the new EF scale, the peak winds for 4 and 5 events appear to be
lower than in the original Fujita scale.