Map 265 comes from another blog, the Arkansas Extreme Weather Blog. Tornado season is coming up (April, May, and June are the months with the most tornados) so I wanted to feature a map that showed the states in the U.S where they are most common. Kansas, of Wizard of Oz fame, has the most tornados at 14 per 10,000 square miles. Mississippi, somewhat surprisingly, is second at 12. Alabama (11), South Carolina (10), Illinois (10), and Iowa (10) are next. Maryland, hardly in tornado alley, is another surprise with 8 tornados per 10,000 square miles.
If you want to avoid tornados the best states for you are West Virginia, the states of New England, and the ones out West. The West Coast may deal with earthquakes and drought (in California at least) but at least tornados are rarer there!
While I’m on the topic of tornados, it is always a good time to prepare yourself and your family for one, even if you live in a safer state. Make a plan with your family so everyone knows what to do if sirens go off. Everyone should know where to go in the house, the safest room in the basement or on the ground floor if there is no basement. This room should have a small amount of supplies and a radio in case you have to be there for a few hours. It does not take much to be prepared!
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Map 266 shows all 68 teams in this year’s NCAA basketball tournament, which concludes this weekend.
It might look like the East half of the country has very heavy representation in the tournament, because it does. That’s not unusual, however. The tournament map looks similar every year. The population in the East is larger and the density of big universities is as well. The biggest schools belong to the major conferences and have much better odds to make the tournament of 68. Smaller schools usually need to win their conferences just to make it in and even then they might be a very low seed and face the toughest seeds early on. You don’t have to be a big school to succeed in the tournament, of course. Loyola University Chicago has proven that this year, making the final four as an eleventh seed, but these Cinderella stories don’t happen every year and the worst seed to ever win the championship was Villanova in 1985, which won as an eighth seed. Villanova happens to be the winner of the bracket I filled out this year, although they’re a one seed now.
On a local level, my alma mater, the Minnesota Golden Gophers, had a horrendous season this year and did not make the tournament. The entire Big Ten struggled, actually, only earning four bids of the 68. Did your favorite team make it in? How did they do? Let me know in the comments below!
Until next time,
Bonus Map Link: Another Severe Weather Map