Sunday Storm

Tornado confirmed by Weather Service

by Alex McRae

alt

Jeffrey Leo

Murphy Johnson (center) looks at debris scattered by an isolated tornado that caused major damage to his property at 75 Windom Drive in Moreland on Sunday afternoon.

The National Weather Service confirmed Monday morning that a tornado was responsible for damage to the property of Murphy Johnson on Sunday afternoon. Johnson lives at 75 Windom Dr. in Moreland.

"It was definitely a tornado," said Steve Nelson of the National Weather Service's Peachtree City Office. "We could see debris on the radar as high as twenty five hundred to maybe three thousand feet."

Nelson was in Moreland Monday morning to view the damage to Johnson's property and other areas nearby. Nelson said viewing the storm damage in person helped Weather Service officials get a better idea of the storm's track, origin and duration.

Johnson, whose camper and large workshop with rollup doors were destroyed by the storm, said "it only lasted about thirty seconds, but was long enough."

Coweta County Emergency Management Director Jay Jones inspected the scene shortly after the storm struck. He met National Weather Service officials there Monday morning and said that to his knowledge, no major damage was suffered elsewhere in the county during Sunday's storm.

"It just kind of came up out of nowhere and it was gone," Jones said. A county-wide system of emergency storm sirens will soon be in operation and will do a much better job of warning residents when dangerous storms approach, according to Jones. The new system will be connected to the National Weather Service office and as soon as a tornado warning area has been identified on NWS radar, all the sirens within the warning area will be automatically triggered.

"Whenever storms are in the area people need to listen to their weather radios and be alert," Jones said. "We're getting more storms and tornados in this Moreland area in the past few years and we want to make sure everyone stays safe."

Monday Morning, Murphy Johnson and his wife Jean watched as neighbors came by to help clear debris and offer other aid and assistance.

"You look at this and you realize how lucky we were," Johnson said. On Monday morning Johnson inspected the property and found parts of his shop as well as furniture, appliances and even the water tank from the family's 11,000-pound camper tossed around like toys. Many items were over a hundred yards away and other items had sailed so far they still haven't been spotted.

"I guess there's no telling how long we'll be picking up stuff," Johnson said. He mentioned that several rolls of coins were lost in the storm and he had picked up lots of loose change while walking the property Monday.

"My seven-year old grandson is gonna have fun looking for that money," Johnson said.

Long time friend and neighbor Lee Hand dropped by, observed the wreckage and visited with Johnson for a while. The men talked about the old barn on Johnson's property that was untouched by the storm. As he left, Hand shook Johnson 's Hand and offered "any kind of help you need."



More Local

Emergency departments holding gas line rupture drill Tuesday

Starting at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Coweta County and Newnan emergency departments will be holding a drill to practice responding to a gas line rupt ... Read More


CSX rail maintenance closes Senoia street

CSX Railroad has reported to Coweta County officials that Seavy Street in Senoia is closed at the crossing for maintenance. The closure is e ... Read More


10 Things to Know for Today

Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today: 1. SOME 130,000 SYRIANS REACH TURKEY ... Read More


Hopeful journey to Colorado

Seizure patient seeking medical marijuana option

In early March, the Georgia medical marijuana bill was gaining steam and giving local families hope for prescriptive treatments for seizures ... Read More


Last chance to see two performers

The Coweta County Fair continues through Saturday, but Monday is the last chance to see two of the featured midway performers. Comedy hypnot ... Read More

Industrial Park expanding along I-85

Motorists on Interstate 85 southbound between Ga. Hwy. 154 and Bullsboro Drive have likely noticed the clearing alongside the interstate, ju ... Read More