Do All Storms with Rotation Make Tornadoes?

Posted on: 7:28 pm, May 3, 2012, by

In another part of our series about Tornado Myths, we investigate whether or not all rotating storms produce tornadoes.

According to The National Severe Storms Laboratory, only about 20% of all “supercells” produce tornadoes. A supercell is a storm with a deep, rotating updraft. That means almost 80% of the most powerful storms that show rotation on radar do not actually produce tornadoes. An even smaller percentage of them produce violent EF-4 and EF-5 tornadoes. Those violent tornadoes make only 2% of all tornadoes.