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November tornadoes might become more common in Connecticut as the climate changes

Severe Weather
AP Photo/Orlin Wagner/AP
A storm cloud moves over Silver Lake, Kan., Thursday, May 18, 2017. The National Weather Service says several tornadoes have touched down briefly in mostly rural areas of Kansas as a severe storm system stretched from Oklahoma into south-central Kansas.

Saturday's four tornadoes in Connecticut were unusual — especially for this time of the year.

The National Weather Service has not recorded a tornado in the state in November since at least 1950. That's how far back the weather service's database goes.

Meteorologist Garett Argianas says this could be the sort of weather scientists would expect to see more of in the spring and fall because of climate change.

"We are seeing longer tornado seasons. That would be in line with what we are seeing here, seeing the first confirmed November tornadoes in the period of record across Connecticut," Argianas said. "So with warmer weather and more moisture around, we are more likely to see more of these tornado events on the fringes of the warmer weather season."

Argianas says we may see more tornadoes at times of the year we are not used to in the future.

Argianas says the latest data shows that climate change does not impact tornado frequency.

The weather radar in the region was updated over the last decade, allowing meteorologists to see debris lofted into the air. That allows meteorologists to see more tornadoes than in the past.

The National Weather Service says a twister with a 6 mile path started in Plainfield, and crossed the state line into Rhode Island.

It moved a heavy, red trailer about 50 feet. Another tornado started in Stonington, before continuing into Rhode Island, destroying sheds and throwing several trampolines around.

One of the trampolines ended up hanging from a power line about 20 feet off the ground.

Other weather service storm reports said in Branford, another tornado toppled light tower generators at a school.

In Cheshire, an SUV and RV were crushed, according to the weather service.

The tornadoes were classified as EF-0 or EF-1, on the low end of tornado wind speed and damage.

Read some of the National Weather Service reports on the twisters in Stonington, Branford, and Cheshire.

Matt Dwyer is a producer for Where We Live and a reporter and midday host for Connecticut Public's news department.

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