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Tornadoes 101

Tornadoes are destructive, and not just because of high windspeed. The unique qualities of tornadic winds make them more likely to peel roofs off houses or kick debris missiles up into the air. In this clip, tornado expert Marc Levitan explains what makes tornadic wind so disastrously different. Measuring tornado severity is the first step in protecting people and buildings from tornadoes. Knowing how strong the next windstorm is likely to be helps engineers design buildings that can withstand it. The Enhanced Fujita (EF) scale rates tornadoes based on the damage they cause.

Courtesy of National Institute of Standards and Technology

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