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Friday's Wilmington area storm included a tornado

Delaware Public Media

The National Weather Service confirms Friday’s severe weather in and around Wilmington did spawn the state’s third tornado in a week.

This EF-1 tornado started around 5:40 pm near the Ashland Nature Center – just east of the intersection of Brackenville and Barley Mill Roads. It traveled east nearly four miles, lifting after 11 minutes before reaching Rockland and Concord Pike.

The tornado’s maximum estimated wind speed was 105 miles per hour and maximum width was 50 yards.

The National Weather Service says the area also saw a straight-line wind event just south of the tornado that affected Greenville and Wilmington.

It also started around 5:40 pm east of Hoopes Reservoir and traveled east four and a half miles over nearly 20 minutes.  It had maximum winds of 95 miles per hour and a maximun width of 1800 yards.  Significant damage ended near the Delaware Art Museum, but there was additional damage as far east as Haynes Park.

Credit City of Wilmington
Haynes Park saw significant damage to trees during Friday's storm.

The two events damaged homes, uprooted trees and brought down power lines.  Delmarva Power says they caused over 14,000 customers to lose power Friday. Just over 1100 were still waiting for it to be restored at of 10 p.m, Monday.

The tornado was the third last week in the First State – joining two EF-1 tornados during last Tuesday’s tropical storm. One caused damage in the Sandtown area of Kent County while the other cut a 29 mile path of destruction from Dover to Middletown.


Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.
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