Posted by: Jennifer Zeppelin, Chief Meteorologist - email
May typically has been our peak month for tornadoes, but after the warmest year on record followed by an ongoing drought and cooler than normal temperatures - our weather has been anything but normal for the past 12 months.
Meteorologists with the national severe storms laboratory track all the tornado stats for the U.S. and have noticed an interesting trend over the last decade - fewer tornadoes.
From January through early May this year, the U.S. has experienced 240 tornadoes, which is the lowest number recorded in recent years.
What's behind the record low numbers? The drought last year and cold start to 2013 have been the biggest contributing factors to the absence of tornado activity in the United States.
However, even with few tornadoes reported - Oklahoma's 30 year annual average ranks us fourth in the U.S. As for the number of fatalities during that same time frame, Oklahoma also remains one of the highest in country.
So the key is not to let your guard down.
Even though Monster tornadoes like the EF-5 and EF-4 that ripped across our state 14 years ago are very rare, an EF 1 can do some serious damage as we saw earlier this year in Bixby.
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