How is the EF-scale different from the F-scale?
Mon, 26 Apr 2010 22:53:23 GMT —
Since 2007, the National Weather Service has been using a modified version of the F-scale, called the EF-scale, to classify tornado intensity. People are still scratching their heads, wondering what the difference is between the two. We TMre here to set the record straight.
The F-scale is based on the amount of destruction a tornado causes, whereas the EF-scale relies more on wind-speed to determine a tornado TMs rating.
Let TMs take for example, the three little pigs: A tornado comes along and huffs and puffs at the houses of straw, sticks and bricks. The house of straw crumbles to the ground because, well, it TMs made of straw. Even a wolf could blow that down. Meanwhile, the house of brick sustains limited damage with a few shingles blown off its roof.
Based on this evidence, the F-scale would have classified that particular tornado as an F1, since one home was blown off its foundation. The EF-scale would take into account the stability of the homes, and estimate the peak winds that might cause such damage, likely classifying the tornado that did minimal damage to the brick home as an EF0.
Meteorologist Steve Drillette from the Amarillo National Weather Service office says, I think the EF-scale is not only more accurate, but it TMs easier to assess the tornado damage. We can go out now and have a whole lot of different damage indicators to look for; the degree of damage helps, and we can get a whole lot better assessment of the damage and tornado strength.
Basically, the EF-scale was developed to enhance the rating system that was already in place| hence the new title, the Enhanced Fujita scale. This newer version does not discount the ratings of the past, but simply allows the NWS to make more accurate assessments for the future.