NWS confirms weekend tornado damage in Pine Belt

NWS confirms weekend tornado damage in Pine Belt
Damage is Lamar County after a weekend tornado.

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Crews with the National Weather Service toured portions of the Pine Belt today to survey the damage left by Halloween storms.

Majority of the damage seen in the Hub City was around the Forrest-Lamar County line, and in a place along Edwards Street.

"I was home, I just couldn't believe it happened so fast, it sounded like a little train or something was coming through," said Hattiesburg resident Phillip Jackson.  "I had a whole bunch of people gathered at my house and it just came out of nowhere, man we are lucky, it could have been a lot worse, but thank heavens the tree missed majority of the house."

Crews with the National Weather Service toured the area this morning to take photos of damage and log a damage path.

"The storm spawned what we are going to classify as an EF-0 tornado, with max winds of 85 mph, and it tracked just shy of five miles through Forrest and Lamar Counties," said Steve Wilkinson, Jackson National Weather Service Warning Coordination Meteorologist.

"The bulk of damage was trees down, and some of those trees struck a house or two, but no damage was anywhere near as significant as the Feb. 2013 tornado in Hattiesburg," said Wilkinson.

Wilkinson said the path that he plotted today lined up with what was visible on radar, and showed visible rotation and that is what prompted the multiple warnings in the area.

"We took the warning for granted, we hear them all the time but we never thought it would happen like that," said Jackson.

The crew surveyed damage in Marion County and determined the storm spawned into an EF-1 tornado with max winds of 95 mph, width of 200 yards and a path length of 1.7 miles. The most significant damage was roof damage to homes caused by the storm.