Derecho Was Term Coined by Physicist in Late 1800s Created by kblakeslee on 6/12/2013 5:45:00 PM
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) _ With a massive line of storms poised to rumble through the Midwest meteorologists were throwing the word ``derecho'' around like a football. Experts defined a derecho as a line of long-lived, powerful storms with winds of 60-100 mph.
But where does the word come from?
Marc Dahmer of the National Weather Service in Indianapolis says the term was coined in 1888 by a physics professor at the University of Iowa who studied a storm system that had passed through Iowa 11 years before.
The name Dr. Gustavus Hinrichs invented for the violent storms came from the Spanish word for ``direct'' or ``straight ahead.'' The weather service says the word ``tornado'' is believed to derive from the Spanish word ``tornar,'' which means ``to turn.''