|First October tornado ever in Wilson hits Monday|
|Tuesday, October 2, 2012|
By JENNIFER HORTON
Wilson County made history on Monday as the first tornado to ever occur here during the month of October was confirmed during a survey Tuesday by the National Weather Service Office in Old Hickory and Wilson County Emergency Management Agency.
Sam Shamburger, meteorologist with the NWS who also went on the storm survey, said the EF-0 tornado that struck the Statesville area was “the first tornado in the (weather service’s) database in October in Wilson County. It’s kind of surprising, but that’s what it says.”
He added that one of his colleagues said, “‘we made history.’”
Wilson County might make history again the first of next week as temperatures may drop into the mid 30s, bringing the first frost to the area.
Fortunately, no one was injured as the line of severe weather moved through on Monday. A tornado warning was issued for southeastern Wilson County – to include the Statesville area – at about 5:45 p.m.
“We came out with Wilson County Emergency Management and saw damage around the Statesville area and found an EF-0 tornado touched down 1 mile southwest of Statesville and ended about 1 mile northwest of town. It was on the ground about 2 miles,” he said.
The survey determined that four sheds were destroyed, and a mobile home on Knight Creek Road was pushed off its foundation and sustained roof damage and broken windows.
Several trees were blown down, Shamburger said, adding surveyors could see debris had been blown from around the home into fields in the Statesville area.
The tornado’s winds were estimated at 85 mph. An EF-0 tornado has wind speeds of 65 to 85 mph. (EF stands for Enhanced Fujita.)
“Luckily, it was a weak one,” he said.
The storm system also produced a second tornado, another EF-0, with this one striking the Grant Community of Smith County where it damaged a mobile home’s undercarriage.
The storm system Monday also brought quite a bit of rain to the Middle Tennessee area. One observer reported 4 inches of rain fell in Lebanon.
The heavy rains caused some flooding in the area, but no serious damage was reported.
The storm system came out of Mexico and moved across Texas this past weekend where it dropped up to 10 inches of rain in some locations. It moved over Tennessee on Monday producing rotation among the clouds in some places.
The transition from warm to cool weather is under way, and Shamburger noted “We are starting to get stronger storm systems.”
Indeed, there is a “Secondary Severe Weather Season” that occurs later in the fall. “We can see severe weather in November and December.”
Temperatures will warm up the next couple of days with highs in the upper 70s to low 80s and lows in the 50s at night.
A strong cold front is to move through Wilson County Friday night bringing about a 40 percent chance of rain Saturday and Sunday, and much cooler temperatures, as well. Shamburger said the high Saturday and Sunday should be in the upper 50s to mid 60s.
Sunday night and Monday night/morning, however, will likely find the low temperature dropping to the middle 30s with some outlying areas close to the freezing mark of 32 degrees. The first of next week, he noted, “may be our first chance for frost.” The first frost of the season normally does not occur until later in October.
“It’s going to be chilly,” Shamburger added.