Some believe one of the effects of global warming is an increase in extreme, violent weather events in the form of tornadoes and thunderstorms. In 2004, there were more tornadoes reported in the United States than since records have been kept. In Kansas alone, there were 124 reported tornadoes. According to NOAA's Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma, nationwide, there were 1,555 tornadoes recorded from January through September 2004. This broke the previous record, set in 1998, by more than 130 tornadoes. One positive development in tornado research is that improvements in technology now allow meteorologists to spot more rapidly rotational patterns in thunderstorms and issue tornado warnings to the public before a destructive funnel forms.
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