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Maryland weather: Tornado sweeps through Annapolis area, chance of flooding continues as Tropical Depression Ida moves through region

A tornado swept through the Annapolis area Wednesday afternoon, leaving a trail of damage, as the remnants of Tropical Depression Ida continued to move across Maryland and areas of the region remained under risk of flooding.

The tornado in Anne Arundel County was confirmed via radar, according to the National Weather Service.

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Video captured in various locations in and around Annapolis showed a dark funnel cloud moving through the area, with the apparent tornado appearing to send debris flying into the sky. Images emerged from the area of tree limbs and power lines down on a roadway. The storm caused widespread damage, even blowing the roof off the South River High School football stadium and ripping the roof off a home in Edgewater.

Several videos from social media capturing a tornado in the area.

“There are reports of substantial damage and trees down from Central Avenue in Edgewater to West Street in Annapolis,” Gov. Larry Hogan said in a tweet. “As of now, no injuries are associated with the storm.”

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Chris Strong, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s Baltimore/Washington forecast office, said efforts to determine the strength of the Annapolis tornado “will take some time this week, given the extent of the damage.”

The sort of damage observed in Annapolis, with roofs torn from some homes and power lines topped, can require wind speeds of 100 to 140 mph, according to National Weather Service indicators of tornado damage. That could indicate a tornado as strong as EF-3 on the Enhanced Fujita scale, which ranges from 0 to 5.

The powerful storms came after a band of heavy rain dumped inches in parts of the Baltimore area Wednesday morning, and as forecasters expect more showers and potentially dangerous storms to hit the state into the evening. Another tornado was confirmed to have touched down in Charles County, but National Weather Service forecasters did not immediately have more information on when and where Wednesday afternoon.

Here’s what you need to know:

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Advisories, watches and warnings

Parts of Harford, Carroll, Frederick and Baltimore counties are under flood or flash flood warnings as of Wednesday evening. Up to 4 inches of rain had fallen in those areas as of 3:30 p.m., and National Weather Service forecasters warned of up to 3 inches more.

Meanwhile, an earlier tornado watch and flash flood watch for the majority of the region has been canceled.

Meteorologists also issued a coastal flood advisory through 6 a.m. Thursday for the shoreline of southern Baltimore County and Baltimore, where they warned that water flooded Thames Street and covered at various points the promenade along the Inner Harbor.

Anne Arundel County, meanwhile, is under a coastal flood watch through Thursday morning, with the water level in the Severn River near Annapolis already reportedly high, according to the weather service’s Middle Atlantic River Forecast Center.

Storm damage, resources

Reports detailing the extent of the tornado’s damage were just starting to emerge Wednesday afternoon, as the weather service reported incidents of flooding in other parts of the state.

After the tornado cut a path from Edgewater to Annapolis, Hogan said, state officials were monitoring its aftermath closely. With more bands of the tropical depression imminent, he urged residents to seriously consider tornado threats.

“We are working with Anne Arundel County and City of Annapolis officials to assess the damage and determine what further resources are needed on the ground,” Hogan said in a tweet.

In Annapolis, county emergency management reported the tornado downed trees and wires, and damaged buildings through the Riva, Woodland Beach and Annapolis areas, according to the weather service.

The National Weather Service reported that at least six swift water rescues were needed in Frederick County, where at least 20 roads were closed because of flooding in the northern part of the county.

Authorities in Frederick County had to perform a high water rescue involving a school bus, bring ten students and the driver to safety, the weather service said.

As of approximately 5 p.m. Wednesday, Baltimore Gas & Electric reported 131 power outages, with approximately 5,302 customers impacted.

Early Wednesday morning, flooding at a Montgomery County apartment complex left a 19-year-old man dead, as authorities continued into the afternoon to locate residents who were unaccounted for.

Looking ahead

Meteorologists wrote those storms should progressively clear out overnight, however they’ll be backed up by strong winds blowing into northern Maryland, with gusts up to 50 mph expected in some places, and 20 to 30 mph gusts in most.

A high of about 80 degrees Wednesday is expected to drop to 61 overnight, when forecasters predict another 1 to 2 inches of rain will fall in the Baltimore area

The storms should depart the area by 8 a.m. Thursday.

“In large, it should be out by sunrise Thursday,” said Connor Belak, a meteorologist in the weather service’s Sterling, Virginia, office.

Thursday afternoon should be partly sunny with a chance of rain, a high temperature near 78 and 14-16 mph winds with gusts as high as 29 mph.

The forecast from Friday to Sunday calls for sunny skies and highs ranging from 78 to 82 degrees. Labor Day should be mostly sunny with scattered showers and a high near 83.

Baltimore Sun reporters Phil Davis and Scott Dance contributed to this article.

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