Tornado Classification System Changes - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

2/2/06

Tornado Classification System Changes

Tornadoes will no longer be classified the same way come next severe weather season.

The power of tornadoes will now be determined by the new enhanced Fujita scale. The current system known as the 'Fujita scale' rates tornadoes based only on their destructive effect on traditional frame houses.

The enhanced Fujita scale will also rank tornadoes based on their ability to damage 18 other kinds of structures. Texas Tech Wind Engineering Researchers played a part in developing the new system.

"A new scale hopefully will reflect the wind speeds that are actually required to produce the damage that we observe," says former engineering professor James McDonald.

The National Weather Service will begin using the enhanced Fujita scale in 2007.

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