Observatoire français des tornades et orages violents

Case Study of the Paris Tornado (France) in September 10, 1896


  • Auteur(s) : Pierre MAHIEU, Emmanuel WESOLEK (KERAUNOS)
  • Date : Octobre 2011


Each tornado presents a threat for goods and people. But the threat is much more serious when a tornado hits a urban or periurban area. The strong population density which is observed nowadays in great cities tends to increase the potential of damage caused by a tornado when it hits them.

In France, tornadoes periodically hit areas with strong population density. Nevertheless, those which hit major cities are not common. On the basis of the KERAUNOS French tornadoes database, which counts 513 tornado cases to date, only 20 tornadoes hit significant agglomerations, i.e. 4% of French tornadoes. The number of strictly urban tornadoes, i.e. which formed and dissipated in an urban environment, are even more uncommon: the Paris tornado of September 10th, 1896, is the only French case in this category.


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