Newberry Co. man says he fled funnel cloud that tore the roof from his home

Newberry Co. man says he fled funnel cloud that tore the roof from his home

NEWBERRY COUNTY, SC (WIS) - All day Monday, the clank of ladders, the pops of nail guns, and the buzz of a table saw echoed across a green, grassy field off Highway 39 near Chappells, as – little by little – Mennonites and Methodists, neighbors and strangers, made a dent on a battered home.

They've gathered a day after a confirmed EF-1 tornado paid a rural corner of Newberry County a visit. Stan O'Bannon drove an hour and a half from Harwell, GA to help.

"I think it went down and took some trees out and then come up and took a storage building and then took the side of the house roof off and a lot of damage there. Then, it carried that debris into the woods, which was pretty severe," O'Bannon said.

The homeowner he was helping told WIS he saw a huge funnel cloud on the horizon Sunday night before he and his two children safely evacuated.

"Wind speeds here were more likely to be in sort of the 80 to 90 mile an hour range, based on the type of damage that was done to the trees and the roof and the buildings," said Leonard Vaughan, a hydrologist with the National Weather Service in Columbia.

Vaughan and the National Weather Service toured the damage Monday and concluded Tropical Depression Nate was likely to blame.

"Whenever you're on the east side of the storm, yeah, you might not have the strong winds or the heavy rain, but you always have the potential for tornadoes," he said.

Despite the destruction, there were no injuries.

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