July 29, 2009 Severe Thunderstorms
Tornado Confirmed Near Tunhannock In Wyoming County
The information in this statement is preliminary and subject to
change pending final review of the event(s) and publication in NWS
- Location...Tunhannock In Wyoming County Pennsylvania
- Estimated Time...1:18 PM
- Maximum EF-Scale Rating...EF-0
- Estimated Maximum Wind Speed...75 mph
- Maximum Path Width...45 yards
- Path Length...262 yards
- Beginning Lat/Lon...41.51114/-75.95732
- Ending Lat/Lon...41.512500/-75.955263
The National Weather service in Binghamton, NY has confirmed a
tornado near Tunhannock in Wyoming County Pennsylvania on 7/29/2009.
The tornado first touched down behind a house on Jurista Hill
road. The first signs of damage were to the top quarter of a pine
tree which was twisted and bent over the tree itself. Continuing
on a northeasterly direction, one large tree was uprooted with
one smaller tree snapped. Another large tree was uprooted along
with a 8 foot by 16 foot wooden shed rolled over for 30 yards.
More tree branches were broken before the tornado moved toward a
corn field, doing more damage to a barn. After minor damage to
small areas of the corn field, more trees were snapped and
uprooted before the tornado lifted. The overall pattern of the
damage was convergent, with the two largest trees uprooted
pointing in different directions. This is suggestive of damage due
to a tornado and not straight line winds.
It should be noted that the ground was very wet due to heavy
rain, and this is why winds were estimated at the lower end of
the EF scale. In addition the tornado passed right next to a two
story house with only a small section of the metal roof showing
signs of uplifting.
Below are images from the storm survey. Click on an image for a larger view.
Large tree down on shed next to house. This occurred on a farm on Jurista Hill road near Tunhannock, PA.
This image shows the path that the wooden shed took through some trees. This occurred on a farm on Jurista Hill road near Tunhannock, PA.
Shows the marks produced by the shed as it rolled. This occurred on a farm on Jurista Hill road near Tunhannock, PA.
EMA Director Gene Dziak stands next to a downed tree. View is toward the northeast. This occurred on a farm on Jurista Hill road near Tunhannock, PA.
This is a panoramic view of most of the damage at the farm. The view is looking from approximately southwest (left) to northwest (right).
- Location...Tunkhannock In Wyoming County Pennsylvania
- Estimated Time...1:22 PM
- Maximum EF-Scale Rating...EF-0
- Estimated Maximum Wind Speed...65 mph
- Maximum Path Width...65 yards
- Yards Path Length...442 yards
- Beginning Lat/Lon...41.523170/-75.948492
- Ending Lat/Lon...41.525596/-75.945192
The second confirmed touchdown of the tornado was at the Skyhaven
Airport in Tunhannock. The first signs of damage were to a metal
roof which was peeled away from a farm outbuilding. Pieces of this
metal roof were moved in a northeasterly direction for over 400
yards. Limited damage to trees, mainly consisting of downed
branches, most of which were small. It was difficult to determine the
direction of the debris given that the debris was mainly the metal
roof. Toward the edge of the airport, corn stalks were blown
toward the northeast. Meanwhile on the other side of a grove of
pine trees, pieces of the metal roof were blown back toward the
west and southwest. These pieces of metal were not blown through
the trees and instead were blown back toward them. The tornado
continued northeast to the edge of the runway before lifting up.
Pieces of the metal roof were deposited in an adjacent
field, with one single piece of the roof ending up toward the
emergency operations center, 1.21 miles from the building from
which it was peeled.
The compelling evidence in the determination of a tornado versus
straight line winds were the eyewitness accounts of 4 different
people, 2 of which were pilots. In addition, the placement and
orientation of the metal roof on the opposite side of the groove
of pine trees with no evidence of it going through them. Lastly
the debris of the metal roof was found more than a mile from farm
outbuilding, suggesting it had remained aloft for awhile.
Part of roof off cow barn.
Roof debris from cow barn in tree and on ground about This just over a quarter of a mile away from the barn.
Other side of cow barn.
The National Weather Service Binghamton extends their appreciation to the Wyoming County Emergency Management Agency
for their help in conducting the storm survey.
- EF0...Wind Speeds 65 To 85 mph.
- EF1...Wind Speeds 86 To 110 mph.
- EF2...Wind Speeds 111 To 135 mph.
- EF3...Wind Speeds 136 To 165 mph.
- EF4...Wind Speeds 166 To 200 mph.
- EF5...Wind Speeds Greater than 200 mph.