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Weak Tornado in Washington State

You read the headline right — a weak and brief tornado was confirmed in Thurston County, WA, on Friday afternoon according to preliminary data from the local National Weather Service.

The quick touchdown happened just minutes before 2 PM PT to the southeast of Grand Mound, which is along the I-5 corridor south of Olympia.  The NWS in Seattle determined that this was a tornado based on videos taken by people in the area, and did not do a storm survey.  Both media as well as the radar at the time this occurred were used to make this evaluation.

Because there was no damage or injuries from this storm, the team ranked it an EF-U, which means the peak winds were unknown.  This is a preliminary rating, and there would need to be confirmed damage to rate it on the Enhanced Fujita Scale.

The tornado was estimated to have a width of less than 50 feet with a path of under 100 feet, being on the ground for less than one minute.

Tornadoes rarely happen in the Evergreen State, as they are one of numerous states out west that average less than 5 per year.

You can read the full report here from the National Weather Service:

About the author
Meredith is a Certified Broadcast Meteorologist as designated by the American Meteorological Society.  She was born and raised in Cleveland but has worked from coast to coast covering almost every type of weather.  Meredith is a weather, space, and STEM journalist and has been live out in the field during destructive tropical storms on the Gulf Coast of Florida, raging wildfires in Southern Cali... Load Morefornia, and covered the wreckage from tornadoes in the Great Plains. In 2009, she reported on the damaging hail storm during the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and in 2017, the historic California winter storms that produced record rain totals and devastating flash flooding.  Prior to joining WeatherNation, Meredith worked at KEYT/KKFX in Santa Barbara, CA, KOTA-TV in Rapid City, SD, WWSB-TV in Sarasota, FL, and began her career as an intern at WGN-TV in Chicago.  She was Santa Barbara's "Favorite Weathercaster of the Year" in 2016 and the Community Partner of the Year in 2017 for her volunteer work with Make-A-Wish Tri-Counties and awarded with the 2018 Valparaiso University Alumni Association First Decade Achievement Award. Meredith is the current chair of the American Meteorological Society's Station Scientist Committee, which focuses on raising greater awareness & outreach when it comes to science education for viewers.  She's also an accomplished journalist, producing weather and science stories including rocket launches at Vandenberg Air Force Base and the new GOES-16 satellite and it's impacts on weather forecasting.  Meredith was personally invited by NASA's Johnson Space Center to interview astronauts on the International Space Station and was the only meteorologist in the nation to do an exclusive report accompanying the GOES-West satellite from Colorado to Florida, reporting on and covering it's launch in 2018.  Meredith's also worked on features that took her paragliding along the coast, white water rafting in Northern California, learning to surf in the Pacific Ocean, and how to be an aerial photographer while flying a single engine plane! Say hi on Facebook, Twitter, & LinkedIn!

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