The National Weather Service has completed their survey and confirmed a tornado at Fort Stewart this past Wednesday, February 3rd.
The tornado first touched down at 5 PM and lasted until either 5:10 PM or 5:12 PM. The first tornado warning on the storm was issued at 5:10 PM. According to this data either most, or the entire life of the tornado was NOT under a tornado warning from the National Weather Service. Fort Stewart personnel, however, did a great job alerting and warning those on base of the twister.
The tornado had max winds estimated between 105-110 mph and was on the ground for 5.7 miles. Thankfully no injuries or fatalities were reported.
The tornado began near Gate 7 of the Fort Stewart Base Complex, likely near EF-0 strength. The tornado moved northeast at approximately 35 mph through the center of the base. Much of the damage throughout the base was EF-0 to high-end EF-1.
The most significant damage started at the Taylors Creek Golf Course, then stretched east-northeast through a small neighborhood to Diamond Elementary School. Several large pine trees were uprooted and/or snapped throughout the golf course and neighborhood area.
Approximately 6 to 10 homes were heavily damaged in this neighborhood due to large pine trees falling on them. One home had nearly 75 percent of the roof removed, but the roof was not strapped down to the walls, which kept the strength rating to EF-1 and not EF-2.
Three cars were rolled over or moved approximately 20 feet in the parking lot of Diamond Elementary School. The school had roof damage on one corner of the gymnasium.
As the tornado continued to move northeast it snapped many trees and downed power lines along Hero Road…near Eisenhower Village. After this point the tornado continued northeast into a heavily wooded area with sporadic snapped trees and downed limbs until lifting near Highway 144. The tornado lasted approximately 10 to 12 minutes before dissipating at Highway 144.
Total damage reported along the path of the tornado included approximately 42 homes, 150 to 200 vehicles, and 8 unit facilities within or near the Fort Stewart Area
– WSAV Meteorologist Matt Devitt