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Tornados tear through mid-state killing six

Posted on Tuesday, March 5, 2024 at 1:32 pm

DUANE SHERRILL – Editor

Middle Tennesseans are coming to the aid of their neighbors in Hendersonville and Clarksville after strong tornados killed six and heavily damaged several neighborhoods during the unusual December outbreak this past Saturday.

According to NWS Nashville, the EF-3 tornado in Clarksville, which killed three and injured 62 people, tracked for 43 miles across Montgomery, Todd and Logan Counties and was on the ground for over an hour and packed winds at its peak of around 150 miles per hour. The National Weather Service, which is still doing surveys of the hard-hit areas released a preliminary report concerning the Clarksville element of the storm.

“This major EF-3 tornado first touched down on Fort Campbell just north of the Sabre Airfield with mostly minor tree damage,” NWS investigators revealed, noting it quickly turned into a monster. “It quickly intensified as crossed Walnut Grove Road and destroyed a building next to a church.”

The report said the tornado then went through a heavily wooded neighborhood south of Britton Springs Road where dozens of mobile and manufactured homes were destroyed.

The tornado intensified to EF-3 as it crossed Highway 41 and struck several commercial businesses, including a vacant fast food restaurant and strip mall where only the interior remained. It had enough force to destroy four two-story brick and vinyl homes on Henry Place Blvd. and inflict roof damage on West Creek Elementary. The tornado then crossed Interstate 24.

In total, according to the early survey, nearly 1,000 homes were impacted by the tornado, including 114 homes destroyed and 268 homes with major damage, with 3 people killed and 62 injured.

Along with Clarksville, impacted counties include Cheatham, Davidson, Dickson, Gibson, Montgomery, Robertson, Stewart, Sumner, Trousdale, Weakley, and Wilson counties.

More than 17,000 homes and businesses were still without power Monday across the Volunteer State, the unseasonably warm temperatures that fueled the tornadic outbreak replaced by lows in the 20s. Local providers estimate it may take days to restore power while residents of Clarksville may be without power for weeks. Schools will be closed in Sumner and Montgomery counties through Tuesday at least.

In the Madison part of the storm, where winds were estimated at around 125 mph. three people were killed when a mobile home was blown off its foundation, claiming the trailer-resident, his neighbor and a 2-year-child.

The Marion Tribune – December 14, 2023