National Weather Service confirms 3 tornadoes touched down Friday

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National Weather Service investigators confirmed that at least 3 tornadoes hit the News 3 viewing area Friday, including a powerful EF2 in Virginia Beach.

The NWS survey team believes the first touched down around 5:33 pm along White Marsh Rd., a few miles southeast of downtown Suffolk. This was likely an EF1 tornado, with winds of 80-90 mph. Numerous trees were knocked downed or snapped off in its 100-yard-wide path, and one outbuilding was destroyed along it. The debris from that outbuilding was picked up by the storm and damaged a nearby house. They believe the tornado then crossed White Marsh Rd., entered the Great Dismal Swamp and likely dissipated after traveling about one mile in all.

Around 6:10 pm, investigators believe an EF0 tornado touched down on Green Tree Road in Chesapeake then quickly lifted off the ground. It then touched down in Kemp Bridge where a mobile home was destroyed. The tornado strengthened to an EF2, with 120 mph winds, before badly damaging a church on Centerville Road. It weakened to an EF1, with 100-105 mph winds as it traveled on Stumpy Lake and Elbow Road. The 350-yard-wide tornado traveled as a strong EF0 across Landstown High School, Princess Anne, Tidewater Community College, Rosemont and then lifted off the ground near the Light Horse community. In all, the tornado traveled 8 miles through parts of Chesapeake and Virginia Beach.

Around that same time, an EF1 tornado was touching down 1 miles south of Powellsville in Bertie Co., NC. This tornado cut a path nearly 5 miles long and 50 to 100 yards wide. In the sparsely populated area, the tornado’s 80-90 mph winds damaged mainly trees just west of Sally Freeman Rd. Investigators think the tornado tracked east-northeastward, crossing Rt. 42 near Rockpile Rd., where it damaged a mobile home. The tornado continued to Quebec Rd. where it knocked downed numerous trees, damaged some farm building and overturned and destroyed a mobile home before dissipating.