TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 5 - TORNADOES SPAWNED BY HURRICANE DAVID


Strong thunderstorms sometimes spawn tornadoes. So it's actually possible for tornadoes to form during a tropical storm or hurricane, since they're nothing more than lots of heavy thunderstorms. And that's exactly what happened in our area on this date in 1979, with the remnants of once-Hurricane David.

David began its destructive path in the Caribbean a week earlier with 150-mph winds. But by the time it reached us, David was merely a fast-moving tropical storm with maximum winds around 50 mph and 1 to 3 inches of rain.

But it was David's thunderstorms that produced 4 tornadoes in this area. One tornado travelled 3 miles through New Castle county, ripping several homes apart. In Pennsylvania, tornadoes touched down in Chester and Berks counties, while a weak twister struck Cape May County in New Jersey. All told, the tornadoes caused 1 fatality, 10 injuries, and several million dollars in property damage.

So even though we don't usually associate the two, history has demonstrated that hurricanes can spawn tornadoes.

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