A tornado with 90 mph winds touched down in the Monkton area Friday afternoon, the National Weather Service confirmed Sunday.
The tornado caused no injuries or significant property damage, but did snap dozens of tree trunks, weather service meteorologists said.
The area was placed under a tornado warning Friday afternoon based on meteorologists’ interpretation of radar as severe storms passed through the region. Afterwards, the meteorologists surveyed the damage to determine whether a tornado occurred, and, if so, estimate its intensity.
They found what appeared to be tornado damage along a 3-mile path, as wide as 150 yards across, in northeastern Baltimore County.
Using radar data and observations from the survey, they determined the tornado touched down at 3:19 p.m. along Corbett Road, just south of Big Gunpowder Falls and between Monkton Farms Drive and Falls Road.
It moved northeast from there, dissipating about four minutes later in the area of Shepperd and Troyer roads, just south of Mount Joy A.M.E. Church.
Residents described “sudden, chaotic” winds as severe thunderstorms passed through, the weather service said.
It caused what meteorologists called “intermittent damage mainly to softwood trees.” The only property damage found included blown-in screens and a torn-off playground slide on one property near the end of the tornado path. Steel barns on the property “sustained no notable damage,” the weather service said.
Based on the extent of the damage, the meteorologists rated the tornado as an EF-1 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale. That is the second on a six-step scale of tornado intensity, just above an EF-0.
Meteorologists found other storm damage around northeastern Baltimore County and into northwestern Harford County, but said they determined it was caused by severe straight-line winds, not a tornado.
Maryland typically sees about 10 tornadoes a year, according to the weather service’s Storm Prediction Center.
In November, two EF-1 tornadoes touched down in Maryland, one of them killing two workers at an Amazon warehouse in Southeast Baltimore.