Texans are all too familiar with severe weather during the spring season, including tornadoes. When tornadoes strike, the damage can be minimal but it can also be disastrous.

There is not much we can do but hunker down and hide from these powerful weather phenomena while they pass by us. Unfortunately, there have been many of these storms that have taken many lives across the state. None worse than in 1953 when an F5 tornado hit Waco, Texas, killing over 100 Texans.

How a Tornado Forms

Tornadoes are a powerful, rotating mixture of warm and cold air. Most tornadoes form from what's called a supercell. These supercells are far more powerful than a typical thunderstorm. Inside a supercell is a spinning column of air called a vortex.

That vortex sucks up the moist, warm air around it and expels cold, dry air toward the ground. This will cause the vortex to go from a horizontal spin to a vertical spin creating a funnel cloud that could eventually touch the ground (britannica.com). This is a rather simple explanation but I think you get the drift.

KVUE via YouTube
KVUE via YouTube

The deadliest tornado in Texas history struck shortly after 4 p.m. on the day after Mother's Day in 1953. It touched down north of the town of Lorena and began moving north-northeast toward Waco.

On a radar at Texas A&M University, the tornadic storm developed a hook-shaped echo. At nearly a third of a mile wide, the massive F5 tornado crossed Waco on a path that ran almost south to north, killing 114 persons and injuring 597. It destroyed around 600 homes and other buildings and damaged over 1,000 businesses and 2,000 vehicles. Some of the survivors had to wait up to 14 hours for rescue.

10 Deadliest Tornadoes in Texas

Below, you can see the 10 deadliest tornadoes in Texas history. The storms below produced large and very destructive funnels that destroyed homes and businesses and killed hundreds. All the information comes from weather.gov with links to various articles and YouTube videos going into more detail about the storm that moved through that area at that time.

These are the 10 Deadliest Tornadoes to Have Struck Texas Since 1900

Tornadoes are nothing new to us in East Texas or throughout the state of Texas. Being on the bottom end of Tornado Alley means we've seen some powerful tornadoes strike in our state.

Gallery Credit: YouTube, dissolve.com, newspapers.com

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