The National Weather Service in Shreveport sent a damage survey crew to Angelina County today (5/21) to confirm eyewitness reports of a tornado. Thursday afternoon residents near Hudson reported scattered damage from a possible tornado.  Some residents in the area posted pictures of a funnel-shaped cloud onto social media.  Oncor reported that a few hundred customers were also without power for a few hours due to the damage from the storm.

National Weather Service via FB
National Weather Service via FB

The Angelina County Emergency Management Office contacted the National Weather Service on several occasions to relay the information they were receiving from persons near Hudson, however, at first, officials with the NWS said the storm system was 'too weak' to produce a tornado.  However, after more photographic evidence and eyewitness reports, a survey crew was sent today to assess the situation.

Here are the findings of today's survey:

The tornado touched down about 5 miles west of Hudson at 3:25 pm on May 20.  It stayed on the ground for approximately 2.6 miles before lifting at 3:31 pm.  Top winds of the tornado were estimated to be 100 mph which translates to an EF1 category tornado on the Enhanced Fujita Scale. The tornado was estimated to be 75 yards wide.

According to the NWS narrative of Thursday's tornado, it began along Old Bonner Road and tracked north-northwest for at least an estimated 2.5 miles through rural areas of northwestern Angelina county. The bulk of damage was observed in the area along Old Bonner Road with damage mainly confined to scores of trees either uprooted, having
trunks snapped, or losing large branches. One outbuilding did receive minor damage on the outskirts of the tornado.  The survey crew noted that tornadic damage extended as far as the eye could see south of the south boundary of the property on Old Bonner Road, however access to survey farther south was unavailable via road networks.

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The next downstream location was across Blackburn Switch Road where a narrow swath of EF-0 tree damage was observed. This was judged the ending point due to lack of access farther north. The survey crew assumed the tornado tracked across a private road to a hunting camp, however lack of access did not give the survey team an
opportunity to confirm this assumption.

Thankfully, no injuries, other than some frayed nerves were reported with the storm. A tornado warning was never issued for the area.


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