National Weather Service investigating possible northern Maine tornado

Posted July 14, 2014, at 8:55 a.m.
Last modified July 14, 2014, at 2:26 p.m.

FORT KENT, Maine — Staff from the National Weather Services office in Caribou are heading to the Fort Kent area this morning to investigate a possible tornado that may have touched down early Sunday evening.

A video shot by Wallagrass resident Denise Corriveau from her home shows what appears to be a funnel cloud moving slowly near the Rt. 11 corridor south toward Fort Kent.

“We will be going out this morning to investigate to see if was a tornado,” Paul Fitzsimmons, meteorologist with the NWS in Caribou said Monday morning.

Experts will look for any damage caused and at the patterns of the damages, he said.

“We will look to see if the damage indicates rotating winds and how strong those winds were,” Fitzsimmons said.

Based on radar imagery taken at 8,000-feet elevation, if there was a tornado, it was “not particularly impressive” and certainly not of the “supercell” variety associated with twisters in the midwest, according to Fitzsimmons.

“There was some weak rotation on the radar,” he said. “But what makes it tricky is it was far from the radar at the lowest elevation we can scan.”

On Monday Corriveau said she and her husband noticed the winds picking up around 6 p.m. Sunday and when her husband heard a noise, she said they looked outside toward the north.

“We saw pretty much what you see on the video,” Denise Corriveau said. “It all happened so quick and I ran for my cellphone to video it.”

If the weather crew does designate the cloud as a tornado, Fitzsimmons said, it would be a “low end” tornado.

“We don’t get them often up here,” he said. “But it is not unheard of either.”

 

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