Tornadoes and severe storms swept across three states late Thursday, leaving at least one person dead and three injured outside Greensboro, N.C., according to the Associated Press.
"Earlier in the day, an apparent tornado also wrecked a shopping area in Mississippi and strong winds flipped a mobile home in Alabama," the AP reported. "In south-central Tennessee, at least four homes and a few barns were damaged."
This is just the latest spate of killer tornadoes in the United States this year.
The 814 reported tornadoes to date is far ahead of the total typically seen by this time of year. It's been July by the time this many tornadoes have typically been recorded, according to the Storm Prediction Center.
The U.S. has already been hit by 64% of the tornadoes expected in a typical year, according to the 10-year average. The year is only about 34% through, and we've only just entered the typical tornado season. 2008 has been unusual because the winter produced so many damaging storms.
However, the preliminary count used to make these comparisons is somewhat inflated. Experts expect the final count to be somewhat lower, given that the same storm can be reported several times, and so over-counted.
Still, this could be a harbinger of things to come. Some scientists have warned that global warming will create conditions that make violent tornadoes more frequent.
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