Tornado flips cars, damages homes in coastal Florida city


A tornado touched down in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, on Saturday as a powerful storm system brought intense rain and powerful winds to the state, overturning cars, damaging homes and snapping tree branches.

The National Weather Service in Miami said the tornado hit late Saturday afternoon with winds of 100 mph (160 kph) near Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center and headed northeast toward the coast.

Storm damage forced authorities in the coastal city to close major roadways in the city as workers cleared debris and inspected wreckage. Images from the scene showed cars flipped over on top of each other, cracked tree limbs resting on vehicles and homes, as well as other debris littering streets.

The Palm Beach Gardens Police Department has not reported any major injuries or fatalities. A spokeswoman for the city said officials have deactivated emergency protocols and were working through lingering issues Sunday.

The National Weather Service had placed a large stretch of central Florida under a tornado watch on Saturday afternoon as thunderstorms were cutting across the state.

Saturday night also witnessed a strong tornado in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida where it was able to topple cars with debris turned up on the roads.

In a confirmation about the twister, the National Weather Service office in Miami said a survey of damage was underway.

The National Weather Service office in Tallahassee said: “Yet another round or two of severe weather and heavy rainfall is expected over the weekend,” adding that “still some uncertainty in placement and timing, but the ceiling for this event may be a bit higher than Thursday’s event.”

In a tweet by the Palm Beach Gardens Police Department tweeted there was damage along a highway in the area and roads were blocked.

As a result of Thursday’s disastrous tornadoes, Florida reported damages in more than a dozen counties including Liberty County, where a tornado tore the town of Hosford Thursday afternoon.

According to the storm prediction on Saturday, there is a Level 2 of 5 slight risks for severe storms for parts of the Florida Panhandle and southern Georgia, including Tallahassee and Panama City, Florida, and Valdosta, Georgia.—AFP