does tennessee get tornadoes

If you’re wondering, does Tennessee get tornadoes, and this is so important for you to know, then you’re in luck as we have details here. Well, tornadoes are a part of life in Tennessee. 

They’re not uncommon, but they can be dangerous.

If you live in the state, you should know how to prepare for them and what they look like when they happen.

Yes, Tennessee does get tornadoes and they are very common in Tennessee because it’s one of the most tornado-prone states in the US. The state has seen an average of about 8 tornadoes yearly since 1950, which is more than any other state.

Does Tennessee Get Tornadoes?

tennessee get tornadoes

Are there tornadoes in Tennessee? Yes. Tornadoes can be very dangerous and destructive storms

They are formed when strong winds and air pressure create a rotating column of air, which can cause powerful winds, heavy rain, and hail. 

These winds can reach speeds of over 200 miles per hour, and they can cause significant damage to buildings, vehicles, and other structures. In some cases, tornadoes can even be fatal. 

In fact, there are parts of the United States that are much less likely to experience tornadoes than others. 

Between the years 1950-2011, there were over 1,000 reported tornadoes in the state of Tennessee.

So, When Do Tornadoes Occur In Tennessee?

when tornadoes occur

Tornado season runs from July through May with peak activity occurring during the late spring and early summer months (May/June). 

Tornadoes can happen anywhere at any time so it is important to be prepared when severe weather strikes your area.

The best way to stay safe during a tornado event is by avoiding contact with windows or metal objects if you are indoors.

Also, take cover under sturdy furniture, or lock yourself inside a small room such as a closet or bathroom.

Tip: If you cannot protect yourself from flying debris then move away from windows until after the storm has passed, but do not leave until authorities say it's safe again.

Different Types Of Tornadoes In Tennessee

There are different types of tornadoes that occur in Tennessee. The supercell tornado is the most common type of tornado, and they tend to be large and violent.

The landspout tornadoes are weak and short-lived, with wind speeds up to 80 mph (130 km/h). 

landspout tornado

They typically form in clouds that touch land first before progressing into an actual funnel cloud.

These can be very dangerous if they hit a populated area or cause heavy damage because there’s no warning sign before their appearance.

Tip: Stay away from areas where these storms have recently been spotted because extreme weather like that can cause serious damage if you get caught in its path.

How Often Does Tennesse Get Tornadoes?

It is difficult to say exactly how often Tennessee gets tornadoes, as the frequency can vary from year to year. 

However, Tennessee is located in the southeastern United States, which is known for its high frequency of tornadoes. 

On average, the state experiences around 35 tornadoes per year, making it one of the most tornado-prone states in the country.

tornado funnel

How Do People In Tennessee Cope With These Tornadoes?

The people of Tennessee are no strangers to tornadoes, and as a result, they have developed various ways of coping with these storms. 

One of the most important things that people in Tennessee do to prepare for tornadoes is to have a plan in place for what to do in the event of a storm. 

This often includes having a designated safe room in their home where they can take shelter, as well as having emergency supplies on hand such as food, water, and first aid supplies. 

The most dangerous type of tornado is a strong tornado with winds up to 200 mph. 

Strong tornadoes can cause extensive damage. Especially when they occur in rural areas far from the center of the population.

What Part Of Tennessee Does Not Get Tornadoes?

what part of tennessee no tornado

It is difficult to say which specific parts of Tennessee do not get tornadoes, as tornadoes can occur anywhere in the state. 

While some areas may be more susceptible to tornadoes than others, it is important to remember that tornadoes can happen anywhere, at any time. 

The best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from tornadoes is to be aware of the weather in your area and to have a plan in place for what to do if a tornado occurs. 

This might include having a designated safe room in your home, staying informed about weather conditions, and being prepared to evacuate if necessary.

Cities In Tennessee Not Prone To Tornadoes

Though there are no cities in Tennessee that are completely immune to tornadoes. Tornadoes can occur anywhere in the state. 

However, some cities in Tennessee may be less prone to tornadoes than others, due to their location and other factors.

City #1: Memphis


Memphis is not located in a tornado alley. 

Tornadoes are extremely rare, and Memphis has a low risk of them.

Memphis is not in the path of any major tornado paths, such as Tornado Alley or Hurricane Alley (i.e the region where hurricanes most often form).

City #2: Chattanooga

Chattanooga is not in a tornado zone. It’s in a flood zone, but not a tornado zone. 

Chattanooga is also in a seismic zone and an earthquake zone, but it’s unlikely that any of those will cause you any trouble either.

City #3: Knoxville

Knoxville is in a valley that makes it harder to get tornadoes. The city is surrounded by hills and mountains, which create a barrier against the wind.


City #4: Morristown

Morristown is a small town located in the eastern part of Tennessee, with a population of about 16,000. 

There are no tornadoes in Morristown, and there have only been four recorded tornado touchdowns since 1950. 

The town was named after Henry Morristown after his wife Margaret’s family moved from New Jersey to Tennessee in 1778.

Note: The region's rich history is based on its role as one of America's most important coffee-producing areas when it was first settled by Europeans in 1794.

City #5: Cleveland

Cleveland, Tennessee, is the county seat of Bradley County, Tennessee, and is located in the Southeastern section of the state. 

The city is named after General William Tecumseh Sherman’s hometown in Ohio. 

Cleveland was founded in 1815 by John Bell and James Patton.

These two were granted a charter for a village on land that now makes up part of downtown Cleveland along with land surrounding it.


City #6: Johnson City

Johnson City is in the eastern part of the state, located in a valley surrounded by mountains. 

The city’s elevation is about 1,200 feet above sea level, making it one of the highest cities in Tennessee.

The climate around Johnson City has been described as humid subtropical with mild winters and hot summers. 

The average annual temperature is 64°F (18°C). 

This temperature is ideal for growing crops during summer months when temperatures rise above 90 degrees F (32°C).

City #7: Kingsport

Kingsport is a city in Sullivan County, Tennessee, United States. The population was 65,847 at the 2010 census.

It is the county seat of Sullivan County. The city is named for William Kingsport, a railroad executive.

Tips To Stay Safe During Tornadoes In Tennessee

tips to stay safe

Tornadoes are a threat to everyone, but they are especially dangerous to people living in tornado-prone areas. 

There is no way to prevent tornadoes, but there are some things you can do to keep yourself safe during a storm. 

If you’re living in or visiting the Volunteer State, here’s what you can do to stay safe:

Be Prepared

Have an emergency plan and an evacuation route planned out in advance of any severe weather, including thunderstorms or tornadoes

This will help you know where you should go if there’s an emergency and where not to go!

Check The Forecast

check weather forecast

When severe weather threatens your area, check with local TV stations for updated information about when and where it will occur. Also, check for how severe it might be.

Listen To Local Media 

Check your local news stations, weather forecast websites, and social media pages to get up-to-date information about the potential for tornadoes in your area. 

Try watching TV or the radio for information during an emergency.

Also, check social media platforms like Twitter or Facebook for updates from local law enforcement agencies.

Tip: Don't forget to as well check meteorologists at universities who track these things every day.

Don’t Panic

The fact remains that tornadoes can appear anywhere and at any time. 

So, even if today isn’t a particularly bad day for storms, don’t let yourself get too comfortable because tomorrow could be another story entirely. 

emergency evacuation plan

This is true especially if you live near an area prone to heavy rainfall.

It’s always better to be safe than sorry when it comes down to dealing with severe weather conditions like this one.

Tip: Always keep yourself informed about any upcoming events so that when those big drops start falling out of nowhere you'll be able to handle them.


We hope you’ve learned a lot on – does Tennessee get tornadoes and about the cities in Tennessee that are unlikely to experience tornadoes. 

As we mentioned before, tornados are a rare occurrence. However, they are not uncommon in Tennessee.

Tornadoes can occur anywhere and at any time so everyone should be prepared for high winds and severe weather.