Tornado Alley is typically considered to encompass mainly the Great Plains states and surrounding areas. However an analysis by analytics firm CoreLogic shows that tornado risk actually extends across most of the eastern half of the U.S. Of the top 10 states with the highest number of tornado touchdowns between 1980 and 2009, only three actually fell within Tornado Alley. At least 26 states have an area with extreme tornado risk.
Estimated property damage within the Tornado Alley states from 2000-2011 was approximately $2.5 billion, while in comparison, 16 states located outside of Tornado Alley totaled nearly $15.5 billion in property damage. Those states range from Illinois and Ohio to Mississippi and Alabama, extending as far north as parts of Minnesota and as far south as Florida.
At least 11 states have significant areas facing extreme hail risk, and almost every state east of the Rocky Mountains has some area facing a moderate or higher level of hail risk. The area of highest hail risk includes states as far east as Georgia and the Carolinas. Hail storms in the Tornado Alley region caused approximately $4.3 billion in property damage and nearly $1 billion in crop damage between 2000-2011.
The 16 states with the next highest amounts of hail damage outside of Tornado Alley revealed about $3.2 billion in property damage and $400 million in crop damage over the same time period. Those states span as far west as New Mexico and as far east as South Carolina and Georgia.