SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) - The National Weather Service office out of New Orleans has completed damage surveys on five tornadoes that touched down in South Mississippi Saturday.
Three of those five tornadoes touched down in Jackson County and were all rated EF-1 on the Enhanced Fujita scale, which rates tornadoes from 0-5. Two more touched down in Harrison and Pearl River counties and rated EF-0.
The only safe way to determine the strength of a tornado is to assess the damage. National Weather Service employees look at how well buildings are made, how sturdy trees are, and how large cars are that are damaged and estimate how strong the winds had to be to cause that type of damage.
The first tornado touched down in St. Martin just south of Lemoyne Boulevard and tracked northeast, ending at the intersection of I-10 and MS Highway 609. Several cars were turned over with windows blown out at Lemoyne Shopping Plaza. The shopping plaza sustained roof and window damage.
National Weather Service officials rated the tornado an EF-1 with estimated winds around 105 mph.
Another tornado touched down near Vancleave where several trees were snapped, and a shed was damaged. It was rated an EF-1 with winds estimated at 95 mph.
The third and final tornado touched down near Wade and was rated an EF-1 with winds estimated around 95 mph. Several trees were snapped in the area.
Another tornado touched down in Long Beach in Harrison county. What started as a waterspout, crossed through the Long Beach Marina, removing the roof off an outbuilding and toppling two sail boats. The waterspout crossed onto land, becoming a tornado and dissipated behind St. Thomas Catholic Church. National Weather Service officials determined the damage was caused by an EF-0 with winds of 75 mph.
The tornado that touched down in Pearl River county near Carriere was rated an EF-0 with estimated winds around 75 mph. Minor damage was done to the Carriere Quick stop on Highway 11.