Milwaukee-area tornado first reported twister in more than 2 decades
October is usually when the fall severe weather season gets underway
A strong October cold front triggered severe thunderstorms and Tornado Warnings from Wisconsin to Georgia Wednesday as damaging winds brought down trees and cut power to thousands.
More than half a dozen Tornado Warnings were issued in and around southeast Wisconsin, which included Milwaukee.
Residents reported sightings of several twisters to the National Weather Service office, who said they have confirmed at least four of the tornadoes.
The NWS believes many of the tornadoes were short-lived and likely ranked on the low end of the Enhanced Fujita Scale.
One of the tornadoes impacted Milwaukee County with 75 mph winds and was ranked an EF-0.
The tornado is believed to be the first twister to impact the county in 22 years and caused a path of damage for about three miles.
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The NWS said they did not receive reports of injuries, and most of the damage seemed to be to trees and roofs.
During the height of the storms, PowerOutage.US reported more than 23,000 customers were without electricity.
About three hours after the last warning in Wisconsin, the NWS office in Nashville issued Tornado Warnings for a line of storms in the southwest part of the metro.
Doppler radar indicated the potential for tornadoes as the line moved through central Tennessee.
The NWS received reports of large tree branches down but did not receive any reports of confirmed tornadoes.
The severe storms knock out power to more than 20,000 customers in the Volunteer State and winds gusted to more than 60 mph.
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The severe weather occurred during the start of what is considered to be the fall severe weather season in the U.S.
The combination of plenty of moisture, clash of air masses and a strong jet stream can produce severe weather.
2022 quiet severe weather season
Despite the recent reports of severe weather, the year is on track to finish well below what is typically seen during an average year.
Through October 11, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration data shows just over 1,000 twisters are thought to have occurred.
By this date, an average year would stand at around 1,191 and end the year just shy of 1,400 tornadoes.
The FOX Forecast Center said a quick end to spring severe weather season and a lack of tropical impacts, other than Hurricane Ian, are some of the reasons why the year is running significantly below the fiftieth percentile.
Last year was similarly slow for reported tornadoes, but a significant fall season and a deadly tornado outbreak in December caused 2021 to finish near average.