Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Birmingham, AL

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NOUS44 KBMX 210417

Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Birmingham AL
1117 PM CDT Tue Mar 20 2018


.TORNADO #1 Blount Mountain Tornado
(Blount and St. Clair Counties)...

Rating:                 EF-1
Estimated Peak Wind:    90 mph
Path Length (Statute):  6.43 miles
Path Width (Maximum):   1000 yards
Fatalities:             0
Injuries:               0

Start Date:             Mar 19 2018
Start Time:             7:50 PM CDT
Start Location:         3.4 miles SSW Highland Lake / Blount County/ AL
Start Lat/Lon:          33.8515/-86.4152

End Date:               Mar 19 2018
End Time:               7:56 PM CDT
End Location:           3.1 NW Ashville / St. Clair County/ AL
End Lat/Lon:            33.8539/-86.3042

The tornado began near Jones Chapel Loop Road with minor tree damage. The
tornado then moved eats and crossed Daylily Road where dozens of trees were
blown down. The tornado crossed Blount Mountain along Walker Gap Road and
crossed Crawford Cove Road near Highway 11. Trees in this area were mainly
uprooted with only a few snapped off. The tornado continued eastbound and
eventually lifted near the Interstate 59 Rest Area just south of the Ashville
Exit. The majority of the damage was due to trees falling on structures and
power lines. The tornado damage path was 6.43 miles long and was 1000 yards wide
at its widest point.

.TORNADO #2 Ashville/Southside Tornado
(St. Clair, Etowah, and Calhoun Counties) ...

Rating:                 EF-2
Estimated Peak Wind:    120 mph
Path Length (Statute):  15.73 miles
Path Width (Maximum):   1760 yards
Fatalities:             0
Injuries:               1

Start Date:             Mar 19 2018
Start Time:             8:02 PM CDT
Start Location:         1.53 NE Ashville / St. Clair County / AL
Start Lat/Lon:          33.8552/-86.2398

End Date:               Mar 19 2018
End Time:               8:21 PM CDT
End Location:           6.66 NE Ohatchee / Calhoun County / AL
End Lat/Lon:            33.8806/-85.9688

The tornado touched down just northeast of Ashville along Highway 411. The tornado
continued east northeast and caused tree damage. The tornado appeared to intensify as
it approached the Coosa River where structural damage became evident. One house was
moved off its foundation with a complete loss of roofing materials. Stands of trees
were snapped off near their bases, including both hardwoods and softwoods. The tornado
then crossed Neely Henry Lake where the tornado was at its widest point and moved into
Etowah County. The tornado crossed Highway 77 near Leota Road where numerous trees were
either snapped off or uprooted and several structures were damaged by falling trees. The
tornado continued east where it narrowed and further intensified toward Green Valley Road.
The most intense damage was observed here where several structures suffered complete loss
of roofing material and exterior walls. As the tornado entered Calhoun County, it narrowed
and weakened and lifted shortly thereafter. The tornado damage path was 15.73 miles long
and was 1760 yards wide at its widest point.

.TORNADO #3 Jacksonville Tornado
(Calhoun and Cleburne Counties)...

Rating:                 EF-3
Estimated Peak Wind:    140 mph
Path Length (Statute):  34.29 miles
Path Width (Maximum):   1900 yards
Fatalities:             0
Injuries:               4

Start Date:             Mar 19 2018
Start Time:             8:23 PM CDT
Start Location:         2.48 NW Wellington / Calhoun County / AL
Start Lat/Lon:          33.8453/-85.9472

End Date:               Mar 19 2018
End Time:               9:10 PM CDT
End Location:           2.81 miles NE Muscadine / Cleburne County / AL
End Lat/Lon:            33.7943/-85.3665

The storm survey for Tornado #3 has not been completed. Areas near Fruithurst and Muscadine
will be examined on Wednesday. It appears the tornado does cross the county and the path
information is estimated to the state line. This information may be adjusted.

The tornado first touched down west of US Highway 431 north of Wellington, where it rapidly
intensified and widened. It snapped and uprooted numerous trees along US Highway 431. Several
homes were damaged by the falling trees. The tornado proceeded eastward across Websters Road and
Broughton Road with scattered tree damage. As the tornado crossed Old Sulpher Spring Road, two
homes were damaged with scores of trees snapped or uprooted. At Angel Station Road, the tornado
filled the valley from one side to the other and caused extensive tree and home damage. An electrical
transmission tower line was toppled at this point, but it was believed that flying debris compromised
the structure. The tornado continued eastward and destroyed the sanctuary at West Point Baptist Church.
Additional structures were severely damaged at the church. The tornado entered the City of Jacksonville
where it gained strength into the EF3 category, with winds around 140 mph. It removed most of the roof
and the top floor of two buildings in an apartment complex. The tornado affected the entire campus of
Jacksonville State University. Several buildings sustained significant damage. The most intense winds
remained north of the campus however, mowing down trees and causing direct damage to homes. As the tornado
crossed Highway 21, it caused caused major damage to the coliseum. It then moved into a highly populated
zone, where scores of homes suffered major damage and rendered many uninhabitable. The tornado maintained
its strength as it crossed Choccolocco Mountain, with winds funneled up the valleys mowing down trees. It
caused major damage to a number of homes on the mountainside. Damaged continued all the way up to just
south of the peak of the mountain, then descended the eastern slopes into Nances Creek.

The tornado is believed to have continued across Cleburne County, producing damage near Fruithurst and
Muscadine before crossing the Georgia State Line. The estimated path length to the Georgia State Line
is 34.29 miles and was 1900 yards wide at its widest point.

EF Scale: The Enhanced Fujita Scale classifies
tornadoes into the following categories.

EF0...Weak......65 to 85 mph
EF1...Weak......86 to 110 mph
EF2...Strong....111 to 135 mph
EF3...Strong....136 to 165 mph
EF4...Violent...166 to 200 mph
EF5...Violent...>200 mph

The information in this statement is preliminary and subject to
change pending final review of the events and publication in NWS
Storm Data.

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