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Tornado Touch Down Confirmed In NY

A file photo of a tornado.
A file photo of a tornado. Photo Credit: NOAA.gov

A tornado touched down in the Hudson Valley region during a round of isolated, severe thunderstorms earlier this week.

The National Weather Service in New York announced on Saturday morning, July 16 that a storm survey conducted in eastern Ulster County found that damage that occurred west of Kingston on Wednesday, July 13 was the result of both a macroburst (straight line winds) as well as an EF-1 tornado.

An EF-1 is the second weakest of the six levels of tornadoes on the Enhanced Fujita scale.

Affected communities where there was widespread wind damage were Kingston, Hurley, Marbletown and the hills just to the north and west of the Esopus Creek. 

The storm also produced large hail which stripped leaves off of trees, the weather service said.

Peak winds topped out at 90 miles per hour during the tornado, which had a path length of a half-mile and width of 300 yards.

According to the survey summary:

"A tornado touched down near Hurley Avenue (Route 29) between Davis Street and Hillside Drive. 

"The tornado moved southeast to just west of the NY State Thruway crossing a subdivision where it uprooted and snapped trees, displaced a car canopy and removed some shingles from a house. 

"Many homes were damaged by fallen trees. Aerial photos showed a swath of downed trees from a second vortex which moved along the northeast edge of the subdivision."

Ulster County Executive Patrick Ryan declared a state of emergency after the storm, and tens of thousands lost power.

The EF scale classifies tornadoes into six categories:

  • EF0 - Weak, winds of 65 to 85 mph
  • EF1 - Weak, winds of 86 to 110 mph
  • EF2 - Strong, winds of 111 to 135 mph
  • EF3 - Strong, winds of 136 to 165 mph
  • EF4 - Violent, winds. of 166 to 200 mph
  • EF5 - Violent, winds of more than 200 mph

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