This analysis is based on preliminary data available from the Storm Prediction Center. Final tornado counts published by the Storm Prediction Center and NCEI's Storm Events Database might differ from this report. For a more detailed climatology, please visit our tornado climatology page.
According to data from NOAA's Storm Prediction Center, during February, there were 51 preliminary tornado reports. This is well above the 1991-2010 average of 29 tornadoes for the month of February. Most all of the tornadoes during the month (46) occurred February 5-7 across several Southeast and Eastern states. The most active day was February 5, in which 28 tornadoes were reported across central Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee and northwestern Georgia. February 6 was the second most active day of the month producing 13 tornadoes across Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina including several torndoes around the Charlotte, NC metroplex. There was scattered property damage, one fatality and numerous injuries blamed on these early-February tornado events.
Did You Know?
Final monthly tornado counts are typically less than the preliminary count. This can be due to some phenomena being inaccurately reported as tornadic activity or a single tornado being reported multiple times. Tornado accounts are reported to the local National Weather Service forecast offices who are responsible for going into the field and verifying each tornado reported. This process often takes several months to complete. Once all reports have been investigated, the final count is published by the Storm Prediction Center (SPC).
The Tornado Monthly Climate Reports are written using the preliminary numbers because the final data is not available at the time of production. Historically, for every 100 preliminary tornado reports, at least 65 tornadoes are confirmed. An error bar is depicted on the tornado count graphic representing this uncertainty in the preliminary tornado count.
The following U.S. studies performed by SPC meteorologists offer deeper context and discussion regarding the frequency and distribution of tornado intensity climatologies:
Edwards, R., H. E. Brooks, and H. Cohn, 2021: Changes in tornado climatology accompanying the Enhanced
Fujita scale. J. Appl. Meteor. Climatol., 60, 1465-1482
- Mccarthy, Daniel & Schaefer, Joseph. (2004). Tornado trends over the past thirty years. paper presented at 14th Conference on Applied Meteorology.