Storm damage near Prescott caused by tornado

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas
Downed trees and power lines resulting from a severe storm on Sept. 27 have made trails in the area of Groom Creek unsafe and impassable at this time. (Photo courtesy Town of Prescott Valley) By Jennifer Thomas Downed trees and power lines resulting from a severe storm on Sept. 27 have made trails in the area of Groom Creek unsafe and impassable at this time. (Photo courtesy Town of Prescott Valley) By Jennifer Thomas
Storms on Sept. 27 damaged houses and trees about six miles southwest of Prescott near Groom Creek. By Jennifer Thomas Storms on Sept. 27 damaged houses and trees about six miles southwest of Prescott near Groom Creek. By Jennifer Thomas
Downed trees and power lines resulting from a severe storm on Sept. 27 have made trails in the area of Groom Creek unsafe and impassable at this time. By Jennifer Thomas Downed trees and power lines resulting from a severe storm on Sept. 27 have made trails in the area of Groom Creek unsafe and impassable at this time. By Jennifer Thomas
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

PRESCOTT, Ariz. – The National Weather Service in Flagstaff has confirmed storm damage that occurred Saturday afternoon outside of Prescott was caused by a small tornado.

The National Weather Service in Flagstaff assessed storm damage southeast of Prescott and said the likely cause was an EF-0 to EF-1 tornado, which would contain winds of 86 to 110 mph.

Two areas of tornado damage were observed. One area was about six miles southeast of Prescott, east of Senator Highway near Groom Creek. A second area of damage was located approximately two miles south-southwest of Groom Creek along Senator Highway.

Numerous ponderosa pine trees snapped and some were uprooted. NWS officials said trees fell onto homes in the area and other houses sustained damage to siding and roof material. They said three homes were significantly damaged and uninhabitable.

"It is incredible," said resident Greg Olson, who witnessed the tornado move through Groom Creek." A black cloud came from the south moving north and that black cloud literally started to dance with the white cloud and within seconds everything was just blinding from the rain, the lightning and so forth."

Downed trees and power lines forced Prescott National Forest officials to close trails in the area of Groom Creek.

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