NWS: EF1 tornado touched down in Hobe Sound

Posted at 3:23 PM, Jan 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-18 05:39:32-05

The National Weather Service confirmed that an EF-1 tornado touched down Sunday morning near U.S. 1 in Hobe Sound.

"We looked at the trees there and we saw tree damage all the way from tree top level to ground level," said Scott Spratt, a warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

It then moved NE and weakened to an EF0 before lifting over the Intracoastal near SE Palm Street.

There were no injuries, but damage to trees, properties and vehicles along as many as four residential blocks.

"We expected to see more damage to residences here," said Spratt.

The Williams family spent the day repairing their fence along SE Coconut Street.

"it's a temporary stand so that our dogs don't get out," said Sandy Williams. "Gotta keep the neighbors happy."

Jamal McFadden is like a son to the Williams family. He was staying over when he heard the winds this morning. "After hearing a big boom, mom, she told me get away from the window," said McFadden. "So, I hid under a glass table."

Stephen Klisus has lived on SE Coconut Street for 20 years. He's never been through a tornado before.

"We went back to bed and looked back out the front window and this is what we saw," said Klisus. "Didn't expect it to be what it was."

A NWS spokesman said during a media briefing Sunday afternoon that El Niño creates an environment conducive to tornadoes in Florida, including stronger tornadoes than would normally be seen. Due to El Niño patterns, we are likely to see more of these tornado occurrences throughout February and March, he said.

The EF1 tornado touched down east of US1 around 7 a.m. Sunday morning with winds of 90 mph.

#BREAKING: The National Weather Service confirms an EF1 tornado touched down in Hobe Sound just east of U.S. 1 shortly...

Posted by WPTV on Sunday, January 17, 2016