EF-1 tornado touches down in Douglas

A homeowner looks at a downed tree on his property on Kings Highway on Monday afternoon. The National Weather Service confirmed that an EF-1 tornado with 90 mph winds touched down along N. Summers Circle, snapping and uprooting trees in the area. Trees fell on at least 10 homes in the area, according to a county official.

The National Weather Service confirmed that an EF-1 tornado touched down in Douglas County late Monday morning as storms ripped through the area leaving a path of downed trees and power lines.

The tornado touched down along North Summers Circle off Kings Highway. The National Weather Service said the tornado packed winds as high as 90 mph.

Trees fell on at least 10 homes in the area where the tornado touched down, according to a National Weather Service survey. County spokesman Rick Martin said the tornado intensified as it crossed Kings Highway and moved along Plum Crest Road, Cherry Dale Drive, Orchard Road and Apple Valley Road. He said the tornado continued east, crossing Apple Way Court and Yeager Road and Greenwood Drive before “lifting as it approached Dorsett Shoals Road.”

“We were extremely busy,” Douglas County Fire Chief Roderick Jolivette said. “We are encouraging people to stay home.”

Martin also reported that a downed tree on Orchard Road resulted in a dog’s death.

There was one confirmed death as a result of the storms that hit the county Monday.

At around 10:36 a.m., firefighters received a call that a tree had fallen on a car on Campbellton Street between Woodrow Avenue and Spring Street in downtown Douglasville about six miles north of where the tornado touched down, according to Martin.

The driver was later identified as Scot Hudson, 60, of Hudson’s Hickory House.

“When firefighters arrived at the scene, they discovered the driver was trapped inside the vehicle with power lines and a tree on the vehicle,” Martin said. “Firefighters had to extricate the driver.”

Jolivette said the driver was responsive when he was first removed from the car.

“He was talking,” Jolivette said. “This is a big blow to our county. Our firefighters knew him well.”

Jolivette said that grief counselors were called to the fire department’s headquarters, which is located next to Hudson’s Hickory House, to “talk to our guys.”

“It was really tough for them,” Jolivette said.

A county official interrupted the Board of Commissioners’ meeting Monday morning to let citizens know about the inclement weather.

Emergency dispatchers received numerous reports of damage from the weather that swept through the area.

Martin said there was also flooding in some parts of Douglasville. The county was under a Flash Flood Warning for much of the day Monday.

By mid-morning, the Douglas County Parks and Recreation Department closed all county parks.

“I’ve received calls from across the state asking how things were,” Jolivette said. “Our response team was quick in getting out there.”

Martin said Douglas County E-911 dispatchers received numerous reports of damage.

A list of some of those reports provided by Martin are:

• Tree reported down at 5945 Liberty Road, tree reported on lines and a house.

• Tree reported down on Yeager Road/Greenwood Drive.

• Tree reported down on Skyview Drive/Mt. Vernon Road

• Power lines and trees reported down on N. Summers Circle/Kings Highway

• Tree reported down on 4978 Kings Highway

• Tree reported down 6043 Orchard Road with a report of one dog deceased.

• Tree and power lines reported down at 8486 Campbellton St.

• Power lines on Orchard Road/Kings Highway.

• Flooding at 3545 Miller St. in Douglasville.