Tornadoes Do Not “Touch Down”

Here is a weather-writing pro tip and public-service announcement that I sporadically post on social media, reproduced here for more indelible digital posterity.

Tornadoes do not “touch down.”

Saying tornadoes “touch down” is literally wrong, and bad science. At the time of tornado genesis, the air actually is rising, not moving downward.

Instead, use any of these easier, briefer, more factually truthful alternatives:

              start

              begin

              form

              develop

              appear

              commence

              initiate

There you have it: more conciseness with greater accuracy, a resounding win-win in writing!



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