A warm front moved northward across Central Alabama during the afternoon and early evening hours on September 22, 2006. The combination of abnormally warm afternoon temperatures, a moist tropical-like atmosphere, instability, wind shear and a surface focusing mechanism produced rotating storms and a few tornadoes. Only a few reports of large hail, wind damage or funnel clouds were received outside of Blount County on this day.
National Weather Service meteorologists surveyed the storm damage that affected Blount County. It has been determined that the damage was the result of a three distinct tornadoes. The tornadoes have all been rated as F2 on the Fujita Damage Intensity Scale.
Three people suffered injuries as the tornado hit. All of these people were in Oneonta. At least 51 homes were damaged and 3 were totally destroyed. Numerous other structures sustained damage as the tornadoes touched down. The Blount County Courthouse and Oneonta High School suffered damage. Numerous trees and power lines were blown down along the damage paths.
Special thanks go out to Max Armstrong, Director of the Blount County Emergency Management, and to Bobby Rollins, Deputy State Fire Marshall, for their assistance in conducting the NWS Storm Surveys. Additional recognition goes out to the Birmingham Area Television Media for sending storm related photos and communicating real-time reports.
Tornado Watch Number 789 was in effect from 213 pm CDT until 700 pm CDT.
Tornado or Severe Thunderstorm Warnings were in effect for Blount County from approximately 430 pm until 800 pm.