I really, really, REALLY, hope I’m not jinxing us by writing this blog post. In baseball it’s taboo to approach your pitcher who has a no hitter going and say “Hey you know you haven’t given up a hit for the first 8 innings”. In weather we have our own nice streak going. For the first 5 months of 2012 we have had zero, zip, zilch, nada, nothing for tornadoes in Wisconsin. It has happened before, though you have to go back a few years. And of course I don’t want to overlook the fact that May isn’t quite over yet.
On average Wisconsin is hit with 23 tornadoes per year. The highest was 62 back in 2005. By month, June is the most active for tornadoes followed by July, May, and August. But so far we’ve seen very little for severe weather in the state and not a single tornado. This follows a winter that didn’t have a major winter storm in our part of the state and near normal conditions up north. Every so often a viewer asks me if I think weather is getting more “extreme” because they saw a TV special that sensationalized a recent storm or event as the worst in decades. It’s funny how you never hear someone ask if weather is becoming less extreme since quiet weather doesn’t make headlines.
If we make it through the month without a tornado it will be the first time since 1997 this occurred. Since accurate tornado documentation began around 1960 we have seen 7 years (1963, 1983, 1986, 1990, 1993, 1995, and 1997) where the first 5 months were tornado free. History also shows that our luck can change in a flash. All seven of the listed years had tornadoes the following year. While most of the numbers were low (2, 3 or 4 tornadoes) June 1993 had 28 twisters.
So I guess I don’t need to worry about jinxing it since it would be all but impossible to go the entire severe weather season without a tornado. The slowest tornado season in Wisconsin was 1997 when we got away with only 7. In terms of our ongoing “no hitter” we’re probably in the 4th inning not the 8th. If by a miracle we get to August without a tornado that would be an entirely different story. And at that point I would NOT write a follow up since I wouldn’t want to jinx it!