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Top 10 Worst Cities For Tornadoes in the United States

Top 10 Worst Cities For Tornadoes in the United States

When you think of tornadoes you think of Kansas and the Great Plains states. You may be wrong these days. The Weather Channel has come out with their list of worst cities for tornadoes and the list is dominated by cities in the Deep South.

I grew up on Long Island in New York and now live in Wilmington, North Carolina, but I spent 20 years in Atlanta so I have an interesting perspective on storms. Growing up with hurricanes that can be just as deadly as tornadoes I found was no where near as nerve wracking as living in a tornado alley.

Hurricanes are like a great white shark. Odds are you had fair warning to put yourself in harms way, so you understand the risks you are taking. But a tornado is like a barracuda. You typically don’t even see them and the attacks are random. Even with the new radar images tornadoes can pop up quickly and destroy your home before you even know it is there.

To be honest, tornadoes scare the heck out of me while hurricanes I just respect.

So for the people who live in these cities, good luck. Be safe. And have a good weather radio.

Top 10 Worst Cities For Tornadoes in the United States

  1. Huntsville, Alabama
  2. Jackson, Mississippi
  3. Birmingham, Alabama
  4. Tuscaloosa, Alabama
  5. Little Rock, Arkansas
  6. Tulsa, Oklahoma
  7. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  8. Atlanta, Georgia
  9. Wichita, Kansas
  10. Canon City, Colorado
Tags: top+ten+tornado, tornado+cities


  1. 3 out of the first 4 listed on this top 10 worst…Are right here in Alabama, which comes as no surprise to those of us with those 3 Cities in our backyards…

    • Alabama has been hit hard in the past few years, but I can remember back more than 50 years and would like to see the data for longer period of time.

  2. I work with a lot of home buyers relocating to Charleston, SC. Buyers who have never lived near the coast are often concerned about hurricanes hitting our area. Having lived here for over 12 years, I rarely think about hurricanes. What always surprises me, though, is when the concerned buyers are coming from areas notorious for earthquakes, river floods, or tornadoes. At least with hurricanes, you know at least a week in advance when they’re coming your way!

  3. Funny we had tornados north and south of hville tonight

  4. Just wondering what kind of data were used and over what period of time. It looks like its only for the last 4 or 5 years, which is not sufficient data.

  5. This is going to be a long spring and the top ten list will probably change. Tennessee, North Carolina and Missouri plus Illinois and Indiana are gaining rapidly.

  6. If they check this out per square mile they'd have Arley, AL at or near the top. Every time we have serious weather it tears up something around Arley and often runs right up Rock Creek just barely missing me.

  7. Just to be clear, is this your list or did ot come from another source? I don’t really disagree but woul dlike to know who and how the list was developed.

    • The third sentence says: " The Weather Channel has come out with their list of worst cities for tornadoes and the list is dominated by cities in the Deep South"; "Weather Channel" is a hyperlink to the original article, including the kind of data they used.

  8. Wow! This is not really a surprise to see that my home town made #1 on the top 10 worst tornado cities. I was always so nervious and scared when I lived there because of tornado warnings and knowing that lots of lives there due to tornadoes in the 70′s and 80′s. I pray that God spare my family, others and me from further tornado damage there. Lord have mercy on us all, everywhere!

  9. I lived in the Huntsville Area for over 48 years. I now live in central North Carolina. I LOVE not having to stress about Tornadoes for 75% of the year.

  10. I think Oklahoma City ranks lower because of the great weather coverage we have and warning in an almost impossible situation. We usually know the storm is there, it’s exact location and movement.

  11. Wow no Moore oklahoma. I couldn’t find a city hit by more big ones than Moore.

  12. The data is a year old, originally from the Weather Channel. The link is at the top of the post. It does not include some of the monster tornadoes that have hit in the past year.

    I will update the post when we get new data.

    Thanks for all your comments and be safe out there.

  13. No one who's lived in Huntsville, AL would question it's place as #1.

  14. OutI Was Born And Raised In Huntsville. I Was There And Survived The April 3-4Th 1974 Tornado Out Break. The Memory Of The Purple Sky And The InGround Pool In The Back Yard With All Of The Water Being Sucked Out While We Watched In Horror Will Forever Be Burned In My Brain. WhenThe Sirens Go Off In Huntsville……Never Ever Ignore Them, Always Take Cover!!

  15. Canon City, Colorado? Really?

  16. I have live in Huntsville and still have family there and we always got tornado warnings..

  17. A in Livingston, AL

    The reason that Jackson, MS, Birmingham, AL and Tuscaloosa, AL are all so high on list is because they line up perfectly with how the storms flow across the SE from February to November each year. Interstate I-20/59 is almost a perfect marker for storm direction down here (as anyone who lives along that interstate can tell you), and those are the three main cities along that route. Just watch this spring if you never have before.

  18. I was born and have lived in the Huntsville area for all of my 57 years. I grew up standing beside my dad and watching the tornadoes go by a couple of miles away. I don’t even turn on a weather radio anymore. If a tornado hits your house, it is not going to matter a whole lot if you are in the bathroom or ten feet away asleep in bed. I have a healthy respect for what Mother Nature is capable of, but I refuse to live my life in fear. Tornadoes are a fact of life here. And for those of you saying they should look farther back in Huntsville’s history, 1974, 1983, etc would just solidify us as #1. It is what it is.

  19. https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1701217131/i

    Here's a way to help a town ravaged by a tornado.

  20. I've lived in Tuscaloosa for 15 years and it seems like Tuscaloosa County has a tornado at least every year or every other year. Sure, it's no where near what we had in 2011, but I would say Tuscaloosa is just as bad as Harvest outside Huntsville.

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