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Has the weather changed? Do stronger storms indicate a shift in weather patterns?

By JILL REALE

(WKTV) - It has been a busy summer weather season across Central New York this year with numerous tornadoes, microbursts and even tornadoes.
 
Many people are wondering if the weather is actually getting worse. Adam Colone believes it has. "I don't remember from being young that the weather was like this," he said. " I don't remember tornadoes, I don't remember flooding like there was so it seems a lot worse that it use to be."
 
While the weather has been active over the past few of weeks, it isn't worse than compared to years past. It may seem like the weather is more severe, but according to weather experts, that's just not the case. 
 
"We average 10 tornadoes per year for New York State and one to two a year in our area," said National Weather Service Meteorologist Erik Heden. "So we do get tornadoes in our area and across New York State, it is not an uncommon thing."
 
There have been several years where tornadoes have hit Central NY, including 2011, where there were six confirmed tornadoes, in 1992 there were seven and four tornadoes back in 1988. But then again, some years this area didn't have any tornadoes. Now both social media and technology plays a role in determining weather activity.
 
With today's technology, it is easier to document weather events, whether it is captured on a camera phone or posted to social media. A perfect example of this is the damage in New London and in Remsen from the July 8 storms. 
 
Heden says the National Weather Service surveyed the area because of pictures posted on Facebook. Without those reports, that tornado would have never been confirmed.  
 
"Social media has made us more aware," Heden said. "It is not a bad thing, we are knowing about these things. But with people telling us, it is increasing the statistics."  

So the big question is, 'Are tornadoes the new normal for Central NY,' Heden says it's doubtful.

"Even though this is an increase year with more tornadoes, the weather happends in cycles," he said. "It does not average all the time." 

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