Tornado Alley shifts east toward Ohio: Experts

*Related video: An Ohio man captures video of a tornado on March 14, 2024*

CLEVELAND (WJW) — When many people think of tornado outbreaks, Tornado Alley states like Oklahoma. Texas and Missouri come to mind.

But, so far this spring Ohio is outpacing those states, and many other states that historical data show are notorious for many tornadoes.

Is green dust on your car every spring in NE Ohio what you really think it is?

For instance, by mid March, Ohio had 16 confirmed tornadoes in 2024, according to the National Weather Service, while Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas had a combined 6 tornadoes.

Then came April and it brought many more tornadoes to Ohio along with it.

Record breaking in fact. Fox 8 meteorologist Scott Sabol said Ohio had a record-breaking 43 tornadoes in April 2024.

“There has been a trend in recent years where Ohio and Indiana are having more confirmed tornadoes,” meteorologists at the NWS told Fox 8 News.

FOX 8 Meteorologist Dontaé Jones has worked and lived where Ohio tornado outbreaks have occurred, including this past March and April in NE Ohio, “I think there’s more than enough evidence to support that tornado alley is either shifting eastward or at the least widening east,” he said.

The following statement below is from a Scientific America article titled ‘Watch Out: Tornado Alley Is Migrating Eastward

“From the 1950s through the 1990s they struck most often in Tornado Alley, an oval area centered on northeastern Texas and south-central Oklahoma. More recently, that focus has shifted eastward,” according to Scientific America.

Dontae was working at a Dayton TV news station during other tornado outbreaks in recent years and shared these comments.

“From the time I arrived in the Miami Valley (Ohio), I learned that it was not only the severe weather section of the state but possibly on the eastern edge of a new tornado alley. Every year that I was there we had severe weather including tornadoes.” Dontae shares more details about incidents that stand out to him that he said, “support the theory of tornado alley shifting eastward.” You can read those later in this story.

A Scientific America graphic also shows part of that shift being highlighted in far western Ohio.

Dontae shared his personal experiences with other major tornado outbreaks that offer credence of a “shifting” tornado alley in regards to Ohio.

“Two incidents in particular stand out to support the theory of tornado alley shifting eastward. Troy, Ohio (Miami County) had a tornado damage some buildings downtown on January 11, 2020. JANUARY! The Memorial Day 2019 outbreak of tornadoes where we had 19 tornadoes in the Miami Valley in one night! Also, the outbreak that we just saw last Thursday (March 14) had the majority of tornadoes along the I-75 corridor and down toward central Ohio. I think that there is more than enough evidence to support that tornado alley is either shifting eastward or at the least widening east,” Dontae said.

Fox 8 meteorologist Scott Sabol said time will tell if recent tornado outbreaks in Ohio will be part of a trend or was an anomaly. “We will need to monitor the next 3 to 5 years to see if there is an early season trend.”

For more information on tornado season you can check out Scott Sabol’s World of Weather.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to Fox 8 Cleveland WJW.