JOPLIN, MO.--- Despite having some of the strongest tornadoes on the planet, the United States isn't the only place you'll find twister. On May 7th of this year, a tornado tore through Tsukuba City, about 40 miles North of Tokyo, killing a 14 year old boy. Japanese tornadoes are smaller and short lived, so the warning system is very difficult. It's like Eastern United States tornadoes, not big, not long lived. Friday a 3 person delegation from the Japanese Government came to Joplin to learn how local, state, and federal officials respond to a disaster of this level in the United States.
"Since tornados are not common in Japan, we have come to Joplin to understand more about how to respond to this kind of disaster." Joplin Assistant Public Works Director, Jack Schaller says while a visit from 63000 miles away may come as a surprise, the Nation of Japan and Joplin actually have a lot in common.
"A disaster like this is much like the tsunami in Japan, everyone world wide knows about it. Just as we've gained knowledge of that disaster, they're gaining knowledge of out disaster in Japan," says Schaller.
Much of the discussion focused around the use of tornado sirens and weather radios to warn residents of approaching storms.