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National Weather Service confirms tornado hit Carroll County

The National Weather Service confirmed on Friday night that a tornado touched down in Carroll County on Friday morning, snapping trees, downing power lines, and damaging property in Westminster and Manchester.

In a news release posted at 9:25 p.m., the NWS said an EF-1 tornado with an estimated wind speed of 90 mph, a maximum width of 100 yards and a path length of 10.3 miles touched down between 8:03 and 8:14 a.m.

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While there was scattered tree damage across southwestern Carroll County, the first noted damage consistent with a tornado was in the Avondale Ridge community just west of Md. 31, southwest of Westminster, the weather service said.

Clusters of snapped and uprooted trees were noted, the release said, and from there, the tornado caused damage as it traveled northeast through downtown Westminster, roughly paralleling Ridge Road and Union Street, where, again, trees were uprooted and snapped, some damaging cars, roads and homes. Roofing was blown off and shingle and siding damage was evident.

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The tornado continued up Hahn Road along Sunshine Way, according to the release. There, more snapped and uprooted trees were seen, as was residential fencing damage, a large recreational vehicle that was blown over and, at the National Guard recruiting office, a small military trailer was blown over. Damage was also observed along Lucabaugh Mill Road, about 250 yards west of Md. 27, where most of the tree were heavily damaged or downed and there was an eyewitness report, as well as a video posted to social media, of a small tornado.

The tornado lifted northeast of Westminster and no damage was noted for about 4 miles until it neared Manchester. According to the release, numerous large trees were uprooted and snapped along Fort Schoolhouse Road, from Albert Rill Road to the northeast, about 400 yards, a home had a section crushed by a large falling tree. As the tornado traveled northeast along Park Avenue, tree damage became more scattered.

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