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Springtime in the US is frequently a season for thunderstorms, which can spawn tornadoes. These large storms are common in the South and Southeast in March and April, then shift toward the plains states in May.

Kelsey EllisHazard climatologist Kelsey Ellis, associate professor of geography at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, contributed to an article for The Conversation that explains how tornadoes form, why night tornadoes are more deadly, and how in rare cases thunderstorms can take a different but equally destructive form—a derecho. Read the full article on The Conversation.


UT is a member of The Conversation, an independent source for news articles and informed analysis written by the academic community and edited by journalists for the general public. Through our partnership, we seek to provide a better understanding of the important work of our faculty.


Lindsey Owen (865-974-6375,