On a rare occasion when I attended school, sometimes we had to crawl under our desks and put our hands over our head. I think it was for a nuclear bomb attack. We didn't have any procedure for a tornado though. Like it would do any good anyway. A small wooden desk...Oh please.

The warnings seem almost ubiquitous today in this world of Doppler Radar and instant communication, but the word "tornado" actually used to be banned in weather forecasts.

Before the 1950s, there were no warnings that a tornado was about to occur.

"That's when the warning system we have now was just being developed," said Bob Henson of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research.

"Most Americans never got a tornado warning," he said.

But what about radar?

"There was no radar," he said.