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National Weather Service confirms EF1 tornado in Iredell and Alexander

Witnesses described seeing tornado on Tuesday afternoon
Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 3:10 PM EDT
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IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) - A survey crew with the National Weather Service was on the ground in Iredell and Alexander counties today surveying damage from Tuesday’s strong storms. Their conclusion was that an EF1 tornado with a maximum wind of 110 miles-an-hour did pass through the area, traveling a distance of five miles.

“The NWS survey found the path of an EF1 tornado that developed in western Iredell County along Massey Deal Road, just west of Old Mountain Road. The tornado tracked NNW, crossing Miracle Farm Road and Lindsey Farm Road before crossing into Alexander County near Smith Farm Road south of Stony Point. The tornado appeared to lift near Lentz Road just west of Highway 64. Damage was almost entirely limited to uprooted hardwoods and snapped softwoods, with the most significant damage being a stand of pine trees on Waugh Farm Road that were snapped as high as 20 feet above the ground. A couple of homes did receive very minor structural damage,” the survey found.

Trees and power lines came down and there was heavy rain. Many neighbors say they spotted the tornado.

A meteorologist from the National Weather Service summed it up in one word on Wednesday exclaiming “Wow” when she saw the tops of tall trees twisted off behind a house off Massey Deal Road.

“What I’m able to do is take a picture of the damage and correlate that damage with a wind speed,” the meteorologist from the National Weather Service said.

That’s what determined that it was a tornado. On the other side of the street there was damage to the panels of a fence surrounding a swimming pool in a backyard. A short distance away on Miracle Farm Road, clean up was taking place at the Wicker’s log home.

“This morning to view al the damage we’re still kind of mouths agape, absorbing it all. The sun is shining which makes a huge difference in any day,” said Danny Wicker, the homeowner, and a well-known local musician.

He’s thankful that no one was hurt and that the damage wasn’t worse. There were lots of trees are down, but the log cabin didn’t have any structural damage. And Danny is thankful that his crew got the tarp on the roof just minutes before another deluge of rainfall hit just after 7 p.m. Tuesday night.

“In general we’re not down in the dumps or anything, we’re trying to stay positive,” Wicker added.

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