Long-lived supercell thunderstorms
May 8, 2009


On May 8, 2009, a long-lived supercell thunderstorm moved across the northern Cumberland Plateau and northeast Tennessee. A storm survey determined that two EF2 tornadoes touched down from this supercell storm in Scott county (pictures of damage) and Claiborne county (pictures of damage), with an EF1 tornado from this same supercell storm touching down later in Grainger and Hancock counties. As this supercell storm moved through Hawkins county, many pictures were taken of wall, funnel, and shelf clouds associated with this storm. Another brief EF0 tornado touchdown was reported near Gray in Washington county of northeast Tennessee.

That same evening, an EF0 tornado occurred in McMinn county around 5:03 PM EDT from a different supercell, while another long-lived supercell moved across southwest Virginia and produced an EF2 tornado in Wise county around 9:45 PM EDT (pictures of damage) and an EF0 and EF2 tornado in Russell county around 10:25 PM EDT (pictures of damage).

A total of eight seperate tornado tracks have been confirmed with this event. While only three supercell storms produced tornadoes during this event, the total number of tornado tracks they produced made this event the largest tornadic outbreak in the Morristown County Warning Area since the Super Outbreak of April 1974.
PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN
840 PM EDT SAT MAY 9 2009 

...EF2 TORNADO DAMAGE CONFIRMED IN SCOTT COUNTY...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MORRISTOWN HAS COMPLETED AN ASSESSMENT OF THE DAMAGE 
THAT OCCURRED IN SCOTT COUNTY TENNESSEE ON FRIDAY AFTERNOON. IT HAS BEEN DETERMINED 
THAT AN EF2 TORNADO WITH MAXIMUM WIND SPEEDS OF 135 MILES AN HOUR...OCCURRED AROUND 
FIVE MILES SOUTHEAST OF HUNTSVILLE TENNESSEE. 

THE TORNADO INITIALLY TOUCHED DOWN JUST WEST OF THE FAIRVIEW COMMUNITY...WITH A 
MAXIMUM WIND SPEED OF 90 MPH (EF-1) AND A WIDTH OF 100 YARDS. THE TORNADO CONTINUED 
IN AN EAST PATH AND INCREASED IN SIZE AND INTENSITY TO AN EF-2 WITH A MAXIMUM WIND 
SPEED AT 135 MPH AND A WIDTH OF 200 YARDS. SEVERAL LARGE HARDWOOD TREES WERE SNAPPED 
OFF NEAR AT TRUNK LEVEL AND A FREE STANDING CELL PHONE TOWER WAS COLLAPSED AND 
TWISTED BY THE WINDS. EXTENSIVE DAMAGE OCCURRED IN A CONCENTRATED PATH AT LEAST 80 
YARDS IN LENGTH AT THE 135 MPH EF2 LEVEL. 

THE TORNADO CONTINUED ITS EAST MOVEMENT AND FINALLY WEAKENED TO AN EF-1 WITH A 
MAXIMUM WIND SPEED OF 100 MPH...AS IT DISSIPATED AT THE FOOTHILL OF GRAY MOUNTAIN. 
AT LEAST SEVEN HOMES SUFFERED MINOR TO MODERATE WIND DAMAGE ALONG THE 4.5 MILE 
PATH OF THE TORNADO.
KMRX radar image at 5:54 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across Scott county on May 8, 2009
KMRX radar image at 5:54 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across Scott county on May 8, 2009.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN
848 PM EDT SAT MAY 9 2009

...EF2 TORNADO DAMAGE CONFIRMED IN CLAIBORNE COUNTY...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MORRISTOWN HAS COMPLETED AN ASSESSMENT OF THE DAMAGE 
THAT OCCURRED IN SOUTHWEST CLAIBORNE COUNTY TENNESSEE ON FRIDAY AFTERNOON. IT HAS 
BEEN DETERMINED THAT AN EF2 TORNADO WITH MAXIMUM WIND SPEEDS OF 110 MILES AN HOUR...
OCCURRED AROUND FIVE MILES SOUTHWEST OF TAZEWELL TENNESSEE. 

THE TORNADO INITIALLY TOUCHED DOWN ALONG COLE ROAD AND QUICKLY PRODUCED 110 MPH 
WINDS. THE TORNADO LIFTED THE ROOF OFF OF A HOME ALONG COLE ROAD...MOVED EAST 
ACROSS THE ROAD AND DESTROYED TWO LARGE WOOD BARNS...CARRYING THE DEBRIS UP TO A 
HALF OF A MILE AWAY. SEVERAL TREES WERE ALSO SNAPPED OFF AT MID LEVEL. THE TORNADO 
CONTINUED IN A 2.2 MILE PATH AND FINALLY DISSIPATED NEAR NEELY ROAD. 
KMRX radar image at 6:50 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across southern Claiborne county on May 8, 2009
KMRX radar image at 6:50 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across southern Claiborne county on May 8, 2009.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN
434 PM EDT MON MAY 11 2009 

...GRAINGER/HANCOCK COUNTY TORNADO SURVEY COMPLETE -- RATED EF1...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MORRISTOWN COMPLETED A SURVEY TODAY 
OF A TORNADO PATH FROM FRIDAY EVENING NEAR THE GRAINGER/HANCOCK COUNTY 
LINE. BELOW IS THE INFORMATION ON THE TORNADO PATH. 

START TIME... 736 PM EDT FRIDAY MAY 8 2009
START LOCATION... 5.2 MILES NE OF THORN HILL (GRAINGER COUNTY)
36.398N / 83.338W

END TIME... 742 PM EDT
END LOCATION... 3.0 MILES W OF TREADWAY (HANCOCK COUNTY)
36.412N / 83.277W

INTENSITY IN GRAINGER COUNTY EF0 WITH 80 MPH WINDS
INTENSITY IN HANCOCK COUNTY EF1 WITH 90 MPH WINDS
PATH CROSSED COUNTY LINE AT 36.405N / 83.324W

PATH LENGTH... 3.5 MILES TO THE ENE
PATH WIDTH 100 YARDS...WITH PERIPHERAL DAMAGE TO IMMEDIATE
SOUTH OF TORNADO PATH BY REAR-FLANK DOWNDRAFT WINDS.

THE DAMAGE WAS CHARACTERIZED BY NUMEROUS TREES DOWN WITH HEAVY DAMAGE
TO MANY BARNS AND OUTBUILDINGS...WHILE MOST SINGLE FAMILY HOMES WERE
CHARACTERIZED BY ROOF DAMAGE TO THE MAIN STRUCTURE. IT IS THOUGHT THAT 
THE WET CONDITIONS OVER THE PAST FEW WEEKS MAY HAVE INCREASED THE
NUMBER OF UPROOTED TREES DUE TO MOIST SOIL.
KMRX radar image at 7:37 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across Grainger county on May 8, 2009
KMRX radar image at 7:37 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across Grainger county on May 8, 2009.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN
727 PM EDT MON MAY 11 2009 

...MCMINN COUNTY TORNADO SURVEY COMPLETE -- RATED EF0...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MORRISTOWN COMPLETED A SURVEY TODAY 
OF A TORNADO PATH FROM FRIDAY EVENING THAT OCCURRED IN NORTHEAST 
MCMINN COUNTY.

THE TORNADO BRIEFLY TOUCHED DOWN ABOUT TWO MILES NORTHWEST OF ETOWAH TENNESSEE...
AND PRODUCED 80 MPH (EF0) INTENSITY. THE PATH WIDTH OF THE TORNADO WAS 20 YARDS 
AND THE PATH LENGTH WAS 0.1 MILE. THE DAMAGE WAS CHARACTERIZED BY SEVERAL TREES 
DOWN.
KMRX radar image at 5:03 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across McMinn county on May 8, 2009
KMRX radar image at 5:03 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across McMinn county on May 8, 2009.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN
545 PM EDT TUE MAY 12 2009

...EF2 TORNADO DAMAGE CONFIRMED IN WISE COUNTY...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MORRISTOWN HAS COMPLETED AN ASSESSMENT OF THE DAMAGE 
THAT OCCURRED IN NORTHERN WISE COUNTY VIRGINIA AROUND 945 PM EDT FRIDAY EVENING. IT 
HAS BEEN DETERMINED THAT AN EF2 TORNADO WITH MAXIMUM WIND SPEEDS OF 120 MILES AN 
HOUR...OCCURRED AROUND FIVE MILES SOUTHEAST OF POUND VIRGINIA. 

TORNADO DAMAGE WAS OBSERVED ALONG THE PATH OF THE STORM. TWO TRAILERS WERE DESTROYED 
AND ONE TRAILER WAS DAMAGED. SEVERAL OUTBUILDINGS WERE DESTROYED. NUMEROUS TREES...
SOME IN CLUSTERS...WERE DOWNED BY THE HIGH WIND SPEEDS. THE TORNADO MOVED ALONG A 
1.7 MILE PATH THAT AVERAGED AROUND 120 MPH IN WIDTH. 
KMRX radar image at 9:27 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across Wise county on May 8, 2009
KMRX radar image at 9:27 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across Wise county on May 8, 2009.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN
636 PM EDT WED MAY 13 2009

...EF0 AND EF2 TORNADO DAMAGE CONFIRMED IN RUSSELL COUNTY...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MORRISTOWN HAS COMPLETED A DETAILED ASSESSMENT OF THE 
DAMAGE THAT OCCURRED IN SOUTH CENTRAL THROUGH SOUTHEAST RUSSELL COUNTY VIRGINIA FROM 
1025 TO 1030 PM EDT FRIDAY EVENING. IT HAS BEEN DETERMINED THAT INITIALLY...AN EF0 
TORNADO BRIEFLY TOUCHED DOWN ABOUT ONE MILE NORTHWEST OF LEBANON. THE TORNADO HAD A 
PATH LENGTH OF A TENTH OF A MILE AND A PATH WIDTH OF 20 YARDS. MAXIMUM WIND SPEED WAS 
AT 65 MPH. 

ANOTHER TORNADO TOUCHED DOWN ABOUT EIGHT MILES EAST-NORTHEAST OF LEBANON VIRGINIA...
WITH MAXIMUM WIND SPEEDS OF 125 MILES AN HOUR...HIGH END EF2 TORNADO DAMAGE. THE PATH 
LENGTH OF THE TORNADO WAS 1.1 MILES AND MAXIMUM WIDTH WAS 250 YARDS. THE TORNADO 
SNAPPED AND UPROOTED AROUND 100 TREES...COMPLETELY DESTROYED A WELL BUILT WOOD BARN 
AND PRODUCED MODERATE DAMAGE TO A HOME.
KMRX radar image at 10:23 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across Russell county on May 8, 2009
KMRX radar image at 10:23 PM EDT of supercell storm as it moved across Russell county on May 8, 2009.

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