A new study is out and being reported on CBS News/Yahoo News that the old middle of the US, North Texas into Oklahoma and Kansas we have always referred to as "Tornado Alley" has shifted to the East. How far, and who is in its sites now? 

Tornadoes Cause Damage Across Iowa
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images
loading...

The term, "Tornado Alley", seems to widen a bit depending on who's telling the story, but essentially it has always been thought of as North Texas into Oklahoma and Kansas. During the Spring of each year, storm watchers and storm chasers line up when the clouds begin to form, ready to pounce on anything that gets close enough to chase. Some of it is for science but most is for the thrill of getting great video and hopefully not getting caught up in it.

Tornado Leaves Leveled Buildings In Its Wake In North Dallas
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
loading...

You chasers may have to move your thrill-of-the-chase efforts more to the East if the studies are true.

Tornado Leaves Leveled Buildings In Its Wake In North Dallas
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
loading...

You may have a hard time convincing the people of the Texas Panhandle and Western Oklahoma this year that the Alley has shifted, this has been a pretty active and deadly Spring in both Texas and Oklahoma with 16 of the total 39 US deaths so far this year in those two states alone.

Center For Severe Weather Research Scientists Search For Tornadoes To Study
Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images
loading...

The maps shown in the CBS/Yahoo News article, which was just updated on June 10, 2024, show a dramatic shift of Tornado Alley into mostly Louisiana and Mississippi. But, hold on just a second, the maps they're using are from 1955 - 1985, contrasting with the newest map from 1986 - 2020. The best map I could find for 2024 was from Wikimedia.com showing a much more traditional plot of tornados so far in 2024.

2024_tornado_track_map_summary - Wikimedia
loading...

Does that mean the original article is wrong? Heavens no, it just means that the data, just like the weather, is constantly changing. What's true today may be completely wrong as soon as, tomorrow.

Judging from the maps on TornadoArchive.com which show the path of all known tornadoes from the 1950s up to 2023 (all 83,000+ of them), the only places you might be able to avoid tornadoes are Nevada and Oregon. Even then it's not like they don't get tornados, just not many.

Tornado tracks - all-time - from tornadoarchive.com
Tornado tracks - all-time - from tornadoarchive.com
loading...

So, the answer to the question is... a big fat, maybe.

If you're like me or anyone else raised in "Tornado Alley", you keep your eyes on the skies, listen for tornado sirens in a storm (do they use those anymore?), watch your phone for updates, and keep a go-bag with emergency supplies always handy. You never know when you might need it or might be able to help someone who does.

LOOK: Tornado Damage in Temple, Texas

Photos show the damage in Temple after a tornado touched down there on Wednesday, May 22.

Gallery Credit: Meg Dowdy

WARNING: These Are the Counties With the Most Tornadoes in Texas

Stacker compiled a list of counties which experience the most tornadoes in Texas using data from NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

Oklahoma's Top 10 Deadliest Tornadoes

From the National Weather Service in Norman, these are the 10 most deadly tornadoes that happened in Oklahoma from 1882 to present.

Gallery Credit: Kaley Patterson

Eagle 106.3 logo
Get our free mobile app

More From Eagle 106.3