The National Weather Service in Wilmington confirmed an EF-1 tornado touched down in Beavercreek Tuesday evening, which injured two people, damaged vehicles and real estate.
The two people injured suffered non-life threatening injuries, Beavercreek police Capt. Eric Grile said, noting each one was in a vehicle when the twister hit the popular shopping area on Indian Ripple Road during rush hour.
The preliminary NWS report indicates maximum wind speeds reached 105 mph. The width of the tornado was 70 yards. It was on the ground for only one minute and traveled a half mile.
“This statement is preliminary and subject to change pending final review of the event(s)…. Additional details including EF-scale rating, estimated maximum wind speed and path information has yet to be determined,” according to the NWS.
The NWS says as many as 22 cars suffered damage in the parking lot of the Greene Crossing Shopping Plaza, and damage to nearby structures was consistent with damage from a tornado with winds over 100 mph.
Grile said 25 to 30 vehicles in the parking lot and 20 to 30 homes in the area behind the shopping center were damaged. Fewer than five homes were seriously damaged, he said.
“We’re very fortunate no one was injured, on the highway or in the residential areas,” Grile said.
Two eyewitnesses reported seeing a funnel cloud touch down at 5:17 p.m. Their reports came to us moments after Beavercreek police began fielding calls about toppled vehicles and damage to buildings at the Greene Crossing, including Waffle House, Sake Japanese Steak House & Sushi Bar, Kmart and FitWorks.
Damage also was reported across the street at The Greene.
Jordan Dreischarf, of Springboro, said the funnel cloud touched down for at least 10 seconds at 5:17 p.m. “It picked up trucks and damaged Waffle House,” he said.
Michael Carrico, who said he lives on East Stroop Road across from the shopping center, reported seeing the funnel cloud on the ground for several seconds.
Vickie Saylor, who works at the nearby Kmart, said about 10 cars were overturned in the parking lot of the Japanese restaurant. Another rolled on its top and was left leaning against the restaurant’s window.
Motorist Matthew Castanias said he was driving south on Interstate 675 from U.S. 35 when rain began to fall just south of the overpass. As he crossed under the overpass, a straight line wind moved his car over from right to left within his lane, but he quickly regained control.
At that point traffic slowed to “a crawl” for about a half mile, he said.
The Kmart parking lot was taped off and evacuated immediately following the storm. Police worked with vehicle owners throughout the evening to have them removed from lot. The last of the vehicles was gone by 11 p.m.
Thank you for reading the Dayton Daily News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to exclusive deals and newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Dayton Daily News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.