How a Tornado is Measured

Tornado in field

Have you ever wondered how a tornado is measured? Knowing the general destructiveness of a tornado is a good way to know how dangerous it is and what safety measures need to be taken. Today in the Stronghold Safe Rooms blog, we’ll talk about what is used to measure a tornado.

The Fujita Scale

In 1971 Tetsuya Fujita, working with Allen Pearson, created the Fujita scale as a way to measure tornadoes. For the most part, this scale was entirely based on observation because tornadoes were measured after they occurred. The Fujita scale would look at the damage that was done and rate the tornado based on those measurements. For instance, if cars were picked up and thrown, houses were damaged, and roads were affected, you might be looking at an F3. If huge amounts of damage, like homes and businesses being completely leveled, it was probably an F4. This standard scale would later be updated and redubbed the Enhanced Fujita Scale.

Related Post: Look For These Tornado Warning Signs

The Enhanced Fujita Scale

The Enhanced Fujita Scale, or EF scale, was implemented in 2007. This took into account three-second wind gust estimates which gave a more detailed ranking. Also, building material types, as well as other destruction factors, were considered. The scale still rates tornadoes from F0-F5, like the standard Fujita Scale before it. To be more precise, the measurements are as follows:

  • EF0 – Light Damage – 65-85 mph winds
  • EF1 – Moderate Damage – 86-110 mph winds
  • EF2 – Considerable Damage – 111-135 mph winds
  • EF3 – Severe Damage – 136-165 mph winds
  • EF4 – Devastating Damage – 166-200 mph winds
  • EF5 – Devastating Damage – over 200 mph winds

Remember, no matter what rating a tornado is given, you need to take shelter immediately. Even an EF0 tornado can be dangerous.

Related Post: What is the Difference Between Tornado Watches and Warnings?

Choose Stronghold Safe Rooms

Often, the safest place in someone’s home is a bathroom with no exterior walls or preferably the same kind of room in a basement. However, you can ensure that you and your family are as safe as possible with a safe room from Stronghold. Contact us today or visit our website for more information about our safe rooms. We offer safe rooms for both commercial and residential properties.