Weak tornado hits near Morrow

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Tee, Sep 1, 2005.

  1. Tee

    Tee Team OGF

    I am real lucky. This happened about 1/8th of a mile away from my house. I was home with my daughter.....

    From this mornings Cincinnati Enquirer

    Thursday, September 1, 2005

    Weak tornado hits near Morrow

    Spawned by Katrina, it damages 3 houses

    SALEM TWP. - A weak tornado - a remnant of hurricane Katrina - moved through a small section of Warren County Tuesday night, causing damage to three houses and downing several trees.

    No injuries were reported.

    Although it was on the ground less than five minutes near Morrow in Salem Township, the tornado was enough to shake up residents.

    "My wife usually handles things. When she called and told me to come home I thought it must have been pretty bad," said William Smith, whose glass-enclosed back patio was destroyed.

    "It lifted the roof up and folded some of the walls in and set the roof back on top of it," said the 37-year-old father of three.

    But it could have been worse. The family wasn't home when the tornado came through. Smith was working his second-shift job as an aircraft mechanic. His wife, Linda, had made an unplanned trip to the Morrow Library with the couple's children, ages 1, 4 and 7.

    "That's what insurance is for, right?" William said. "The house can go, but ... I just feel we're lucky no one got hurt."

    The Emergency Management Agency said tornado warning sirens didn't sound because the tornado was too sudden and too brief.

    "It was an F-0 tornado. The weakest," said Frank Young, director of the Warren County Emergency Management Agency. An F-5 is the strongest.

    "Those (F-0 tornadoes) are very hard to see. The winds are either a precursor to a growing tornado or they peter out," he said.

    "In our county, if we've got a good indication we've got a tornado on the ground, we'd activate our sirens. But that lasted (too) briefly."

    The tornado touched down around 5:50 p.m. on Gheils Carroll Road, near the intersection of Morrow-Woodville Road, about two miles southeast of Morrow. It traveled northwest to First Street in downtown Morrow, then skipped back into the air, passing over the life squad and fire station. It touched down on the other side of a Little Miami River tributary, where it did more damage to trees and crops along Morrow-Rossburg Road, Young said.

    Young said he knew it was a tornado when he saw the damage.

    "Straight-line winds will lay everything in one direction. With tornadic winds, trees are lying in various directions. Last night when we went out there to take a look, it was very plain it was an F-0 tornado," Young said.

    According to the National Weather Service, the tornado traveled a total of about two miles and its path was 300 to 400 yards wide at the widest point.

    Damage estimates have not been finalized.

    Smith said his insurance company gave him a figure of $25,000 to $30,000.

    The National Weather Service said Katrina spawned a storm system that led to some minor high water in areas, but no major flooding or other weather-related damage, said Myron Padgett of the Wilmington office.

    Warren County usually sees about one F-0 tornado every two years, Young said.

    The last severe tornado was in 1999. The F-4 tornado devastated parts of Montgomery and Blue Ash in Hamilton County before traveling north into southern Warren County.

    That tornado took four lives and caused $125 million in damage.

    Straight-line winds in 2003 downed a Paramount's Kings Island large sign near Interstate 71 and did $4 million damage.