Preliminary reports on the tornado that struck Randolph County last week from the National Weather Service in Birmingham were posted on their web page over the weekend.
The tornado, which originated in Chilton and Coosa counties, has been rated an EF2 with estimated peak winds at 115 mph, a 13.94-mile path length and approximately 800 yards in width. The warning for those counties was issued at 9:01 p.m. and expired at 9:21 p.m.
The tornado then moved into Randolph County with a warning being issued at 9:59 p.m. and entered the county in the Motley community near the Clay County line. There was major damage to homes in that area, and it destroyed the County Line Fire Department building and trucks. The tornado was rated an EF2 with estimated peak winds at 125 mph. The tornado stayed on the ground for 27.3 miles and had a path of over 1,000 yards in width, causing major damage in the Corinth and Rock Stand communities.
The NWS provided this summary of the tornado's path:
This tornado formed in southeast Clay County along Hodge Creek Road southwest of the Sikesville community. It moved northeastward through the Sikesville community to County Line Road and intensified to an EF2 tornado. One residence suffered roof damage and most exterior walls collapsed on another structure.
The tornado continued to snap and uproot numerous trees as it moved into southwest Randolph County, paralleling Randolph County Road 836 and crossing Highway 77 and the Tallapoosa River. Several homes sustained significant roof damage or removal as the tornado crossed Randolph County Road 43 near the Forester Chapel community. Roof damage and downed trees continued as it crossed Randolph County Road 33 and Randolph County Road 26 near the Level Road community, and as it crossed Highway 431 north of Roanoke near the Rock Stand community.
More roof damage to residences and a mobile home occurred near Randolph County Road 61, and exterior walls collapsed on a 100-year-old cabin. As the tornado approached the Wehadkee community, an agricultural building suffered significant structural damage. Tree damage appeared to continue up to the Georgia state line.
First responders rushed to the damaged areas and rescued several people who were trapped in their homes. The warning for the county was eventually cancelled at 10:31 p.m. and the storm lifted briefly before entering Heard County, Ga.