National Weather Service proves 3 tornadoes touched down on LI durin…

This story was reported by James Carbone, Vera Chinese, Michael O’Keeffe and Darwin Yanes. It was written by Chinese.

Three tornadoes touched down on Long Island, the National Weather Service said Sunday, including one with wind speeds of 110 mph, during a powerful Saturday storm that left thousands in the dark, felled trees and tore roofs off buildings.

Those conclusions were based on surveys of damage in Nassau and Suffolk where confirmed or suspected “tornadic activity” took place.

There were no reported injuries but the tornadoes did plenty of damage in short bursts.

Two of the three were EF-0’s, the lowest-level tornadoes, with contained winds of between 65 mph and 85 mph. But the one that hit Shirley and Manorville was an EF-1 — nevertheless considered “ineffective” — with wind speeds of 110 mph, the weather service said.

At one point, it lifted the roof of a two-story multi-family residence in Shirley and tossed it 150 yards to the north.

“The tornado strength likely peaked at this point, the entirety of the EF1 tornadic path to the southwest and northeast of Montauk Highway [was] around 1/4 mile,” the weather service report said.

The tornado, then with slightly lessed winds, nevertheless flipped several small planes at Brookhaven Calabro Airport, sheared off shingles, collapsed fences and took off sections of roofs in homes throughout its three-and-a- half-mile path in eight minutes.

Earlier Sunday, Nelson Vaz, a warning coordination meteorologist for the weather service, visited a Shirley home where the thick trunk of a tree snapped off and rocketed into a home.

“We’ve seen some areas that are pretty intense suggesting that winds are in excess of 80 to 90 miles per hour potentially up to 100 miles per hour. Any time you see a roof lifted off of a house, not something you see here too often, it is indicative of a pretty intense storm,” Vaz said.

A thin tornado in East Islip went 900 yards in two minutes, first traveling down residential streets, then lifting over the sports fields of the John F. Kennedy Elementary School, and coming down again to break several trees and do minor roof damage to several homes.

The winds, possibly as much as 75 mph, then formed into a funnel that briefly touched down again, taking down a rotted tree in Oakdale that toppled onto a home, destroying it, the report said.

The weather service survey in Nassau confirmed evidence of a tornado with wind speeds of about 85 mph started at 2:37 p.m. in Woodmere and was last recorded in Levittown at 2:55 p.m.

In Woodmere, several trees and strength lines were felled, the report said, and from “there, the tornado lifted and skipped in a few locations as it traveled nearly 50 mph to the northeast toward Hempstead, Uniondale and Levittown.”

In Uniondale, it tore off the roof off a two-story building, and cut down a large tree in Levittown that fell into a house, the report said.

Three other tornadoes, including an EF-1, were confirmed in Connecticut.

The weather service put out a harsh thunderstorm alert at 12:25 p.m. on Saturday, warning of high winds.

It issued tornado warnings in both counties at 2:53 p.m. Cellphones and televisions began blaring a tornado alert from the weather service about 3 p.m. Saturday.

John Cristantello from the National Weather Service said there was enough rotation in the winds to put out a tornado warning at that time.

Dominic Ramunni from the National Weather Service said it’s fairly difficult to put a tornado warning when they don’t have ground reports and spotters to gather data. He said when tornadoes are weaker, it’s a little harder to get the warning out in a timely matter.

The storm crisscrossed the Island in a zigzag fact, with some communities contending only with heavy rain and gusty winds while others had uprooted trees and downed strength lines.

PSEG Long Island vowed to have strength restored to “virtually all customers” before Monday. Sunday, the number of outages spiked to more than 1,500, nevertheless way down from 7,779 Saturday night, before coming down again Sunday night.

Denise Flores said Sunday she had heard tornado warnings in the past and would hunker down in her Shirley basement for twisters that never came. Saturday seemed different, she said. A wind gust knocked her to the ground. Just like in the past, Flores retreated to her basement.

She ultimately emerged to find chunks of her neighbor’s roof had damaged her home. The edge of a wooden stake impaled in her bedroom wall.

“I was blessed,” said Flores, 49. “My guardian angel held my house down because those walls are all cracked.”

The wind on Northern Boulevard in Shirley was so intense during the storm it dented William Sutherland’s garage doors.

“I truly had to push them back in from the inside … because they were bowed inside from the wind,” he said Sunday.

The house itself lost a piece of siding, but otherwise was in good shape. “I built this strong,” said Sutherland, a contractor who constructed the home in 2005.

Scott Russell, Southold town supervisor said crews have spent the day surveying the damage in the town, where there were uprooted trees and strength outages.

The biggest issue was a 245-year-old buttonwood tree in Orient that was severely damaged by the storm. Russell said the top portion snapped off. The tree may not die, however, and the town is having it assessed to see if it will survive this injury.

“The community loves it and takes a lot of pride in it,” Russell said. “It is a community landmark.”

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