Tornado damages 36 homes, 2 businesses in Washington town
The National Weather Service says 36 homes and two businesses were damaged when a tornado touched down in Battle Ground, Wash. on Thursday morning.
The tornado, with a rating of EF1, produced wind speeds up to 104 MPH and touched down in at least two spots along its two-mile long path.
No injuries were reported. No roofs were lifted, but small trees were uprooted or snapped.
According to Ted Buehner, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Seattle, the tornado isn’t a surprise. It occurred at about the right time and place for a Washington tornado.
“We average between 1-2 tornadoes per year,” Buehner said. “There’s some years we don’t get any, and there’s some years we get far more. In fact, in 1997, we had a record 14 tornadoes. And 12 of those occurred on three separate days.
“They are all over the state. The bulk of them have occurred where people exist,” he added. “A lot of them are along the I-5 corridor from Portland up through Bellingham, and east of the Cascades along I-82 and I-90.”
The reason why they happen there is quite obvious, Buehner said.
“We have the reports of (tornadoes) where people are because that is where they are spotted,” he said. “We don’t know where other tornado events occurred because people didn’t know what they were looking at or were there to see it. We have very few reported in our mountainous areas.”
Buehner said that tornadoes often happen during the changing of the seasons, such as during spring or fall.
We've had multiple reports of a tornado in Battle Ground, WA. We're sending a team out in a bit to do a damage assessment.
— NWS Portland (@NWSPortland) December 10, 2015
Several people reported seeing the tornado.
— Joel Defferding (@defferding) December 10, 2015
Tornado in Battle Ground today. Man… I'm missing all the excitement up here.
Posted by Melody Gibbs on Thursday, December 10, 2015