Safe from the Storm: Dixie Alley Becoming Tornado Hotbed
By RICH THOMAS Bluewater Chief Meteorologist
In Alabama and other parts of what’s called “Dixie Alley,” tornado season now appears to be running from the end of October through mid-May.
Some studies show that the traditional tornado alley of the midwestern plains is shifting east. This year’s severe weather season in our area got its start in November, when a tornado killed two people in the Flatwood community just north of Montgomery.
January 2023 produced a record 29 tornadoes in Alabama. On January 12, nine EF-2 tornadoes hit the state and there was the EF-3 that struck in Autauga County, killing seven people. That tornado was on the ground for 76 miles before lifting in Chambers County.
Tornadoes can be especially deadly in the South. That’s because the population is more dense than in the Midwest, and because we have tornadoes in the overnight hours.
Alabama leads the nation in tornado fatalities. Part of the reason is people living in mobile homes who should get to safer structures when severe weather threatens.