Sunday, April 17, 2011

Tornado Total Now Up To 8

As National Weather Service survey teams continue to assess Saturday's storm damage in Virginia, our official tornado tally rises. As of Tuesday morning, there are now eight confirmed tornadoes in Virginia from Saturday, April 16, with two more suspect areas in Lunenburg County (near Victoria and also around Rehoboth) that have yet to be surveyed. This graphics lists our six strongest tornadoes of the eight from Saturday:
The National Weather Service in Wakefield continued to survey the damage Tuesday in eastern Virginia from Surry through Mathews Counties and into Middlesex County from Saturday's tornadoes. They have now released an upgrade to EF3 (136-165 mph estimated wind speeds) for the tornado that tracked from just south of the Surry Nuclear Power Plant northeast into Mathews County. This tornado was initially surveyed as a strong EF2, pending further investigation, which was completed Tuesday. The NWS survey team estimates this EF3 tornado touched down just south of the Surry Nuclear Power Plant at 6:45 PM and caused a nearly continuous damage path all the way to Southwestern Mathews County at 7:20 PM. This puts the tornado on the ground for approximately 30 miles! The width of the tornado ranged from around 200 yards to as much as a half-mile wide in Gloucester County. More than 200 homes were damaged, with numerous trees either downed or sheared off. Two people were killed as a result of this tornado, with 24 others injured.

The damage farther northeast around Deltaville in Middlesex County was deemed to be from a newly formed tornado rated EF2 (111-135 mph estimated wind speeds) from that same supercell thunderstorm. Surveyors Tuesday estimate an EF2 tornado touched down at 7:25 PM at Fishing Bay in Southeastern Middlesex County, moved northeast through Deltaville, then dissipated at 7:40 PM over the Rappahannock River. This tornado was as wide as a quarter-mile and was on the ground for about 3 miles, damaging 95 homes (in Deltaville) and downing or shearing off numerous trees in the area. No injuries or deaths occurred from this tornado.

The National Weather Service in D.C. confirmed Monday evening an EF-0 tornado 2 miles west of Leesburg, VA in Loudon County at 7:14 PM Saturday. A few trees were uprooted and a street sign post was pulled from the ground and snapped. Several other snapped tree limbs occurred as a result of this tornado.

The National Weather Service in Blacksburg surveyed damage Sunday and confirmed two tornadoes from Saturday.

An EF-0 (85 mph winds) moved through Rockbridge County around 2:03 PM Saturday. The path length was 1.3 miles and the width was around 100 yards. It produced minor damage to a few homes and barns and knocked down several trees.

The other tornado was confirmed in Halifax County. An EF-2 (111-135 mph winds) moved through Virgilina and destroyed numerous homes. There were a few minor injuries, but no fatalities.

Here are some of the tornado touchdowns on our map from Saturday:Here is the Enhanced Fujita Scale for your reference: