So far this spring in our country, the South has taken a big hit with strong storms and tornadoes. We have been fortunate so far, but storms are the norm during the spring and summer in the Midwest. When it comes to severe storms there are some really bad myths about tornadoes that need to be dispelled.

I am sure you have heard that highway overpasses are a safe place to seek shelter when a tornado is coming. This is not the case. People have been pulled away from the overpass by the tornado and basically swept away by the draft from underneath it.

Another myth is that you can save your home from destruction by opening your windows during a tornado. The thinking is that it would equalize the air pressure inside the house created by the storm. The violence of a tornado will destroy a house with or without your windows being open.

I have also heard that tornadoes never strike a big city. Nothing could be further from the truth. An intense storm can strike anywhere regardless of a city's size.

The next myth I have heard many times in Quincy over the years is that tornadoes won't hit Quincy directly because of the Mississippi River and its bluffs. The truth is that tornadoes are unaffected by mountain ridges, rivers, valleys or bluffs.

The final myth deals with where to position yourself in a home when a tornado is approaching. I am sure you have heard that the Southwest corner of a basement is the safe place to hide during the passage of a tornado. The reality is the part of the home towards the approaching tornado is the least safe place in the basement to be. The best place is to be in the smallest and sturdiest place in a basement.

Those are five of the most heard of myths in dealing with tornadoes.

Here’s to a quiet Spring and Summer ahead in 2021. If not, hopefully these tips will keep you save in the event you experience a tornado in the future.


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