IOW storm was tornado, NWS confirms

Published 5:05 pm Monday, April 18, 2011

WINDSOR—The National Weather Service has confirmed that an EF-2 tornado, with winds between 111 to 135 miles per hour, touched down in Isle of Wight County Saturday evening.

Meteorologist Dan Proch said the Weather Service received confirmation of the tornado when it sent survey teams out Monday. He said more data on the wind speed would be available in the next few days.

“We should be able to pinpoint (the wind speed) better than that,” Proch said. “We should have a narrower gap.”

The storm touched down at about 7:15, according to witnesses and left 25 homes damaged and four others destroyed and other damaged property in its wake. There were no injuries or fatalities.

“It looked like hell,” said James Cobb, owner of two homes on West Blackwater Road. Cobb and his family were busy clearing away debris from his property Monday afternoon.

A larger house he believes was built in the late 1800s lost a portion of its tin roof, which he said littered the yard after the storm. He estimated the roof damage between $6,000 and $7,000. A smaller house next door lost a bay window in its kitchen.

The storm also clobbered three barns on Cobb’s property. He said the barns were probably destroyed.