Experts Believe Tornado Alley Now Includes Missouri & Illinois
The classic understanding of "Tornado Alley" brings up images of big twisters in Oklahoma and Kansas. A new assessment by storm experts now estimates that "Tornado Alley" has moved east and now includes large parts of Missouri and Illinois.
I saw this new tornado theory shared by Accuweather. They mentioned that the classic "Tornado Alley" was an area that began in southern South Dakota and extended south through Texas. They now believe that "Tornado Alley" has moved east as they shared a startling map showing the frequency of tornadoes for the past 40 years from 1980 through 2020.
There's a bigger picture scientific paper that backs up the idea that what used to be considered "Tornado Alley" needs to change. It's highly technical, but the short version of what it displays is that areas that have what are considered meteorological conditions conducive to tornado development now happen in areas just east of the Mississippi River instead of the Great Plains where that used to be true more often.
More and more, you're seeing some of the more well-known storm chasers traveling through Missouri and Illinois as they capture video of these tornadic storms.
It's worth noting that there's no official National Weather Service or NOAA reclassification of "Tornado Alley" yet as there's still data and trends to be considered. Always being prepared for severe weather no matter where you live remains the best mentality to maintain.