Tornado Myths Unraveled

Tornado Myths Unraveled

With the latest Massachusetts cyclone comes yet another grim reminder of the deadly perils of twister season. You might want to ask yourself: are you really as savvy about tornadoes as you should be?

There are many twister misconceptions, and INSIDE EDITION did some research to help you ensure your safety.

Myth #1: A highway overpass is a good place to take shelter from a tornado.

The overpass theory may be based on famous footage shot by a news crew in Kansas, who hid under a highway bridge as a twister tore through their area. Although the crew lived to tell the tale, it seems that they got lucky.

An overpass actually funnels the tornado through a narrow space, increasing the wind speed. According to the National Weather Service, if you are caught in the open, a ditch is the best place to seek shelter.

Myth #2: The southwest corner of your hiding place is the safest position.

A safety film from the 1950s is largely responsible for promulgating this incorrect advice. Experts now say that this tip is wrong.

"Where you want to be located if a tornado is approaching is in the centermost part of your home, your school, wherever you are. You want as many walls between you and the outside as possible," a Red Cross representative told us.

Myth #3: Opening your windows equalizes pressure and minimizes damage.

"Opening a window, all it really does is delay the time that you have to save your life. It's absolutely not worth worrying about," the expert said.

Myth #4: Tornadoes don't hit cities.

As we learned from the twisters that just tore through Massachusetts, cities are not immune to such storms.