Why no warning issued with Kent Co. tornado?

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- Meteorologists from the National Weather Service addressed the media late Monday afternoon following Sunday night's EF-1 tornado touchdown in Kent County.

Many residents are wondering why there was no warning or even a watch issued with this storm.

The twister, rated a high-end EF1, had winds of 100-110 miles per hour when it struck at 10:20 p.m. near 64th Street and Burlingame Ave. SW. It was on the ground for 10 minutes and 6.25 miles and was 900-1,200 feet at its widest, according to the NWS. It lifted around 10:30 p.m. near the area of Breton Road and 28th Street SE.

RELATED: EF-1 tornado touchdown confirmed in Kent County

National Weather Service meteorologists say they couldn't detect the twister because it was hidden and rain-wrapped. Meteorologist Daniel Cobb says the tornado also developed behind the radar screen.

He added the twister was also unusual because it was a spin-up tornado, meaning instead of descending towards the ground, like the large funnels you see in the Great Plains, this one started on the ground.

"The time the radar detects the velocity of this one, it's on the ground. It developed right at the base of the ground, and then grew upward, the opposite way it's supposed to happen," he said.

Cobb says the worst damage was from the U.S. 131 and M-6 interchange to 44th Street and Kalamazoo, then it started to weaken. The worst damage was trees snapped in different directions, trees blown into garage doors,and carports ripped off.

Cobb says if this tornado arrived during the day, spotters would have had a better chance of seeing it form.

The last EF-1 to hit Grand Rapids was in 2001. The last tornado was a EF-0 in 2006, at a Caledonia golf course, Cobb said.


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment