Pell City - Ragland F-3 Tornado - St. Clair County
January 10, 1975 


F-3
Estimated Maximum Wind:
162-209 mph (from the original F-Scale)
Injuries/Fatalities:
60 Injuries / 1 Fatality
Damage Path Length:
18.8 miles
Maximum Path Width:
150 yards
Approximate Start Point/Time:
33.5503/-86.3197 at 414 pm
Approximate End Point/Time:
33.7676/-86.1232
Notes:
None

This tornado was one of at least 13 tornadoes that touched down across Alabama on this date. Five of the tornadoes were rated as F2 or higher. The National Weather Service surveyed the damage area from the violent tornado which touched down in St. Clair County. Here is the storm summary of the damage area from Robert M. Ferry, Meteorologist-In-Charge, WSFO Birmingham:

"Friday afternoon January 10, 1975, a tornado moved northeastward acorss the center of downtown Pell City, Alabama, and stopped the First National Bank Clock at 4:11 pm.  Many buildings, mostly homes, were heavily damaged by large trees (some 5 to 6 feet in diameter near the trunk) uprooted and falling across them.  Seven mobile homes were completely destroyed in a small trailer park (Smith's) which is about one mile northeast of Pell City.  The Red Cross reported that 33 people were taken to the hospital for treatment where only three were admitted-those, not too serious.  There were no injuries in the trailer park becausd residents had taken shelter in a nearby brick building.  None of the trailers had tie-downs.

Around 4:25 pm, apprarently the same tornado that struck Pell City hit the small town of Ragland, which is around 15 miles to the northeast.  The Ragland High School sustained  extensive damage to its prefabricated (flat) roof and windows.  Several homes were damaged while one mobile home and a cement block building were completely destroyed.  One man was killed inside the poorly constructed cement block building.  There was very little observable damage to trees and other builidings within a reasonable distance to the block building.  No other injuries were reported in Ragland."

In total along the path, at least 54 homes were destroyed and 307 homes were damaged. 15 trailers were destroyed and 27 businesses were damaged or destroyed. One person was killed at a service station.

 

 


View Pell City (St. Clair) 10 Jan 1975 in a larger map
 

Storm Survey Pictures 

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Newspaper Clipping

 
 


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