A far reaching outer band of Hurricane Sandy produced scattered showers, some of which moved across the island and produced a tornado in Sandy’s parish. The tornado damaged homes and businesses, blowing in doors and windows, knocking over walls and ripping up a section of roofing. Squally showers are in the forecast until Sandy pulls further away from the island. Hurricane Sandy has top winds of 75mph, and although Sandy is expected to pass more than 300miles away from Bermuda, its extreme outer bands may produce tropical storm force winds, downpours, and tornadoes.
The Bermuda Weather Service today investigated the damage and determined that it was indeed a tornado and that it was an F1 tornado on the Fujita Scale. An F1 tornado has winds between 73 and 112mph and produces minor damage. Tornadoes are not uncommon in tropical cyclones, especially to the right of the track. Tornadoes are not unheard of in Bermuda including ones that formed in Hurricanes. To understand why Bermuda sees so few tornadoes, think of Bermuda as a small target, and a tornado as an even smaller projectile – its gonna be hard for one to hit Bermuda.
Tropical storm conditions are possible tonight and tropical storm warnings are in effect. Remember, tornadoes are always possible in tropical cyclones and so the threat for more will be there until Hurricane Sandy pulls away sometime around Monday evening.
UPDATE – To see news articles and pictures of tornado damage:
Tornado’s Flurry of Destruction
Tornado Hits Somerset, Sandy causes flight cancellations
The rating for this tornado was officially an F0 on the Fujita scale, indicating winds less than 73mph. See the NOAA Post-Season storm report on Hurricane Sandy.