EF1 tornado causes damage after touching down near Belville

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BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY)–The National Weather Service has confirmed that an EF1 tornado hit parts of Belville and Leland on Monday night. The tornado formed in an outer band of Hurricane Isaias, snapping approximately 100 trees and damaging homes.

We spoke with residents in the community that say they heard the typical sound of tornado passing by, not leaving them with much time to shelter.

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“I grabbed my phone and it said emergency alert and literally in that moment I heard the freight train sound of a tornado,”says resident Heidi Guyer.

The EF1 tornado had maximum winds estimated at 104 miles per hour as it moved through multiple communities. One neighbor says the tree damage from the tornado was far more serious than Hurricane Florence back in 2018.

“As far as the damage to the trees it was worse than Florence here last night,”said Harold Matthews. “Most of the severe damage here was caused by the two tornadoes last night.”

The fast moving storms gave residents very little time to prepare. They said they received the weather alert one minute and had to find shelter seconds later.

“We took shelter just my son and I were here,”says Guyer. “We ran to the center of the house and got in the closet and then it was gone as quick as it started.”

The NWS also confirmed two other tornadoes touched down in Brunswick County on Monday night.