2018 marks first year with no violent tornadoes in U.S.

For the first time since modern record-keeping began, the U.S. went a calendar year without any violent tornadoes.

The Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma tracks tornadoes in the country, with records dating back to 1950.

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Tornadoes, violently rotating columns of air in contact with the cloud and the ground, are rated based on the damage they cause. The Enhanced Fujita Scale is used to rate the tornadoes from EF0 (winds 65-85 mph) to EF5 (winds over 200 mph). Tornadoes classified as EF4 or EF5 are considered violent.

In 2018, no tornado hit EF4 or EF5, according to the center.


However, the U.S. did indeed see plenty of reported tornadoes -- 1,154, to be exact.

The center will review that number and the data will be quality-controlled to account for the actual number of tornadoes.

The months of May and June recorded the most tornado reports across the country, with 166 each, and October had the second-most reports with 159.

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While tornadoes occur across many states each year, they are most common in the Southern Plains and the Deep South. Iowa and Louisiana had the most tornadoes reported in 2018, with each state reporting 84 tornadoes.

Interestingly, Oklahoma, in the heart of "Tornado Alley," only reported 24. Pennsylvania had more reported tornadoes, with 31.

According to data gathered by the center, there were only 450 total Severe Thunderstorm and Tornado Watches issued across the U.S. in 2018. That’s the lowest number since 1984, which had 402.

On the high end, 1,169 total watches were issued in 1996.