|Two teams of national weather service employees surveyed some of the damage from the severe thunderstorms of Sunday, February 13th. Here are summaries of two areas of damage. Images to the right were taken with a digital camera, click on the graphic to get a larger image.
Southern Montgomery County Tornado
A supercell thunderstorm moved across southern Montgomery County and produced an 11.4 mile track, F1 tornado. The tornado began at 3:00 PM just southwest of Ada, and tracked to the northeast. It lifted about a mile west of U.S. Highway 231, southwest of Teasleys Mill at around 3:17 PM. The tornado crossed Montgomery county road 70 several times in the Davis Crossroads area. Some of the most intense damage was a mile or two southwest of Davis Crossroads, where the Ramer manufacturing plant sustained considerable damage. Several homes and mobile homes sustained damage along the path of the tornado, and hundreds of trees were snapped or uprooted. At times, the tornado path was up to 300 yards wide. Click on the map image to view a map showing the damage path.
A Tornado Warning was in effect for Montgomery County from 2:43 PM to 3:45 PM. A tornado watch was issued for Central Alabama, including Montgomery County, at 2:30 PM.
There were two significant events in southern Madison County, one in south central Huntsville and one that extended from the Redstone Arsenal into a residential area. Both events were evaluated as straight-line wind events, or downbursts. Click on the map image to view a map showing the damage path.
The first event began around 7:28 PM and continued for about 4 minutes ending around 7:32 PM. Minor damage occurred just west of Huntsville Park with damage at Joe Davis Stadium and a shopping area known as Stadium Place. Several businesses sustained significant damage including an NTB store where the wind collapsed an exterior wall and threw roofing material across Memorial Parkway. A number of other businesses in the immediate area sustained damage, too.
One person was apparently injured slightly as they sought shelter when the wind struck while eating at one of the restaurants that was damaged.
After crossing Memorial Parkway, the downburst worked its way eastward downing numerous trees and power lines. The wind damage extended up the west side of a ridge running north from Garth Mountain. Significant damage ends near the top of the ridge. Most houses damaged sustained roof damage with shingles removed. One tree fell on a car severely damaging it.
On the Redstone Arsenal, several large buildings just north of the Tennessee River were damaged, at least one severely. A large stand of pine trees was 70 percent destroyed. The downburst proceeded east-northeast damaging several houses just outside of the Arsenal. Damage to the houses was primarily shingle damage.
In both cases, the downbursts probably reached speeds of 75 to 95 miles an hour. An instrumented tower about three-quarters of a mile north of the damage on the Redstone Arsenal recorded wind to 81 mph at the 300 foot level. Surface wind measurements about 3 miles away reached 58 miles an hour.
A Tornado Watch was in effect at the time of these events. A severe Thunderstorm Warning was issued for Madison County at 6:48 PM. A Tornado Warning was issued for Madison County at 7:29 PM.
Two National Weather Service employees surveyed some more wind damage from the severe thunderstorms of Sunday...February 13th. here are summaries of two more areas of damage.
East-Central Montgomery County/Northwest Bullock County F0 Tornado
The same supercell thunderstorm that produced the southern Montgomery County tornado of February 13, also produced a weak (F0) tornado that began in extreme east-central Montgomery County, near Panther. The 3-mile track, F0 tornado, apparently began around 3:30 PM, just west of Panther and crossed County Road 36 moving into northwest Bullock County near the Piney Grove Church, around 3:32 PM. It crossed County Road 37 near the Mt. Zion Church area, and then dissipated around 3:35 PM. There were numerous trees snapped or uprooted along the 100-yard wide track.
A Tornado Warning was in effect for Montgomery County from 2:43 to 3:45 PM. A Severe Thunderstorm Warning was in effect for Bullock County from 3:32 to 4:00 PM, which was upgraded to a Tornado Warning at 3:40 PM. A Tornado Watch was issued for central Alabama, including Montgomery and Bullock counties, at 2:30 PM.
Northwest Bullock County F0 Tornado
The same supercell thunderstorm produced another weak F0 tornado north of Fitzpatrick. This 1-mile track, 50-yard wide tornado crossed county road 7 about 2 miles north of Fitzpatrick. Several trees were uprooted or damaged. Based on radar data, this tornado began around 3:42 PM, and apparently lasted for only 1 minute or less.
A Severe Thunderstorm Warning was in effect for Bullock County from 3:32 to 4:00 PM, which was upgraded to a Tornado Warning at 3:40 PM. A Tornado Watch was issued for central Alabama, including Bullock County, at 2:30 PM.