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Tornado Season Predictions: A Potential Surge in Activity Ahead

Increased Tornado Activity Expected Across the Plains

The United States, which typically experiences around 1,200 tornadoes annually, might see a significant uptick in tornado activity this year, particularly during the peak months from April through June. Experts suggest that the Plains could face a busier season due to a combination of atmospheric conditions. Although tornadoes are more common in spring, this year’s conditions have been unusual, with the Midwest showing increased activity while the South remains quieter than usual.

Factors Influencing This Year’s Tornado Patterns

This year’s anomaly in tornado activity can be partly attributed to the effects of a fading El Niño, which tends to suppress early season tornado activity in the South by altering the jet stream patterns. However, the transition from El Niño to La Niña conditions may lead to a reversal in activity as the season progresses. Meteorologists are closely monitoring these developments, which suggest a possible increase in severe weather events as the jet stream pattern changes, potentially leading to more favorable conditions for tornadoes in the central United States.

What to Expect as the Season Develops

As we move deeper into the tornado season, experts like Victor Gensini from Northern Illinois University are predicting a notable increase in storm activity. This is expected to be driven by the Madden-Julian oscillation, which could enhance storm conditions across the U.S. later in March. The overall severity and frequency of tornadoes for the season will depend on how these climatic patterns evolve, with indications pointing towards a more active period for many regions prone to tornadoes, particularly as we approach the traditionally more active months of April and May.