3 Tornadoes confirmed in Midlands after severe storms pass
Wed, 27 Apr 2011 17:40:58 GMT —
COLUMBIA (WACH) -- Weather officials are confirming three tornadoes touched down in the Midlands during Thursday morning's severe storms.
The Calhoun County Coroner says a tornado did touch down around 7:30 a.m. near the rural town of Fort Motte, between Wateree and St. Matthews.
Donnie Porth says there have been no reports of injuries, but a path of damage extended for about one mile. Porth says a few farm structures were damaged and officials are working to clear the roads. The National Weather Service later confirmed that report. The tornado was rated an EF-1.
"Not since Hugo, It's been a long time since I've seen something like this," said Fort Motte resident Stanley Jackson.
The second touchdown EF-1 tornado touched down southwest of Millwood in Sumter County. Winds reported with the torando clocked in around 90 mph. The third tornado occured in Sumter County's Shiloh community. That tornado was rated an EF-0.
Other areas saw winds in excess of 60 miles per hour, more possible tornados, damaging winds, heavy rain and hail, along with impressive lightning. Several areas of rotation were indicated on radar moving east at around 50 miles per hour.
Apple-size hail was also indicated on the radar in some areas, but it's unclear whether it was actually reaching the ground.
A viewer in Sumter reports pea size hail, very strong winds and possible damage from a strong storm cell that moved through with the passing of this front.SkyWACH Weather SkyWACH Weather Forecast SkyWACH Radar Current Watches and Warnings
The Sumter County Sheriff's Department is also reporting some damage, but they say a tornado did not touch down.
SCE&G was reporting over 1,500 power outages across the state at one time. Richland and Lexington counties reported the majority of those outages. Click here to find a detailed outage map.
Wach Fox News has crews out hunting for damage in areas that may have seen tornados or damaging winds. If you see storm damage send your pictures and video to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also email email@example.com to report any damage you see.
The storms continued to move through South Carolina into the afternoon. As the day heats up the storms could be more severe as they head toward the coast.
More than 200 deaths have been reported from the same storm system Wednesday that rushed across the nation. Most of the fatalities are being reported from Alabama alone. This has been an historic April for tornadic activity with tornado reports reaching the 600 mark.
Tuscaloosa and the University of Alabama have been rocked by a massive tornado that eyewitnesses estimate was a mile wide. Numerous injuries and fatalities are being reported across the deep south as a result of this system. Several buildings were reported to be taken off their foundations. Birmingham was also hit by a tornado earlier Wednesday.
This is the same system that rocked Texas, Arkansas and Tennessee Tuesday.
Watch videos uploaded to YouTube below to see a tornado as it moves through Tuscaloosa.