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56. Tornadoes

    Tornadoes are storms with very strong turning winds and dark clouds. These winds are perhaps the strongest on earth. They reach speeds of 300 miles per hour. The dark clouds are shaped like a funnel--wide at the top and narrow at the bottom. The winds are strongest in the center of the funnel.

    Tornadoes are especially common in the United States, but only in certain parts. They occur mainly in the central states.

    A hot afternoon in the spring is the most likely time for a tornado. Clouds become dark. There is thunder, lightning, and rain. A cloud forms a funnel and begins to twist. The funnel moves faster and faster. The faster the winds, the louder the noise. Tornadoes always move in a northeastern direction. They never last longer than eight hours.

    A tornado's path is narrow, but within that narrow path a tornado can destroy everything. It can smash buildings and rip up trees. Tornadoes can kill people as well.

    The worst tornado swept through the states of Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana in 1925, killing 689 people. Modern weather equipment now makes it possible to warn people of tornadoes. People have a much better chance of protecting themselves. But nothing can stop tornadoes from destroying everything in their path.



1. What is one of the main features of tornadoes?
a. Blizard
b. Dark clouds
c. Sun

2. What speed can tornado winds reach?
a. Two hundred miles per hour
b. Three hundred miles per hour
c. Five hundred miles per hour

3. Where do tornadoes occur in the USA?
a. In the South
b. In the West
c. In the center of the country

4. When do tornadoes occur in the USA?
a. Autumn
b. Summer
c. Spring

5. How long does the longest tornado last?
a. 15 hours
b. 7 hours
c. 8 hours

6. How can people stop tornado?
a. With special equipment
b. With own power
c. It’s impossible.

7. What is the synonym for the word ‘twist’ (paragraph 3)?
a. Begin
b. Curl
c. Grow
d. Blow

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