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Luzerne County F2 Tornado - December 1st, 2006

A National Weather Service Storm Survey Team found a 15-mile tornado track across Luzerne County. Preliminary indications are that the tornado touched down near Hobbie in Hollenback Township late Friday afternoon December 1st around 5 PM. It then tracked east-northeast into Dorrance, before continuing into Wright Township and Fairview Heights. Click on the map to see the path of the tornado.

Map of the Luzerne County Tornado track. Click for a Preliminary findings show a continuous 15-mile track length with an average width of 150 yards. The preliminary tornado rating is an F2 on the Fujita Scale of tornado intensity. Wind speeds in an F2 tornado range from 113 to 157 mph and cause considerable damage.

The majority of damage along the path has been preliminarily rated at F1 intensity. Numerous trees were uprooted and snapped along the entire length of the path. In Dorrance, the roof of a fire department was partially peeled off. Shingle and minor roof damage was common all along the path. Most of the major damage was caused by trees falling through homes. Two trailer homes, along with a construction trailer, were completely destroyed by fallen trees. Over 100 homes sustained minor damage.

As the tornado crossed Route 309 in Fairview Heights, the intensity briefly strengthened to F2. A roof was completely torn off of a well-constructed home and thrown 150 feet into a neighboring yard. Also near Fairview Heights, Crestwood High School suffered minor damage. The surface of the roof was lifted off, a large dumpster was tossed, and several air-conditioning units were blown off of the roof and have not been found.

The tornado tracked further northeast and caused F1 damage. At Mr. Z`s Supermarket, a 9000 pound air-conditioning unit was lifted from its base and tipped. At the same location, a 2500 pound air-conditioner was blown off the roof and landed approximately 20 feet from its initial location.

These findings are preliminary and will be updated throughout the weekend as more information is gathered.

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Page last modified: December 2, 2006.
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