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Tornado touches down in Taylor County

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The EF-1 tornado caused property damage in the Cave Road area

By Zac Oakes

 

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Local farmer Rod Phillips and his wife were in an equipment building on their property on Cave Road around 6 p.m. Saturday evening when the winds began to pick up outside.

Phillips said they were finishing feeding their dogs when they heard the winds begin to gain strength and they began to feel the building shake.

The two lay down on the floor of the building, hoping to remain safe as the storm passed through. The worst part of the storm probably only lasted about 45 seconds, Phillips said.

“But it feels like an eternity when you’re laying inside there with it coming through,” he added.

The storm that came through was possibly an EF-1 tornado, according to Taylor County Emergency Preparedness Coordinator Ronnie Dooley. Dooley visited the property on Monday to survey the damage, and said that it looked like a tornado had touched down.

The National Weather Service did confirm that it was a tornado during a visit on Monday.

Dooley said that the tornado went on a three-mile path in the area with winds in excess of 100 miles per hour. 

The National Weather Service had already confirmed three tornadoes in Kentucky as of Monday morning. One was in Ohio County, another in Muhlenberg County and the other occurred in Meade County. An EF-1 tornado is classified as having winds from 86 to 110 miles per hour.

The equipment building that Phillips and his wife were in sustained a considerable amount of damage. One of the large doors on the building was completely blown inside the building, and several other doors were damaged.

The storm also blew a large hole on the opposite side of the building, and Phillips said that he thinks the large hole turned out to be a good thing.

“The way the pressure was in there, it was just filled with air,” Phillips said. “When that hole opened up, a lot of that pressure left. I think if that pressure had stayed in there, it may have taken the roof off. It felt like that was what was going to happen.”

After waiting out the heavy winds, Phillips said that he got up and began to look around and survey the damage, but shortly thereafter, the electricity went out.

“I got up to check on everything,” he said. “I checked on my wife to make sure that she was alright, then checked on my dogs, and made sure that everything else was alright.”

Three barns on the same property, less than a quarter-mile up the road from the equipment building where Phillips was, sustained the majority of the damage. The barns were completely on the ground after the storm passed through.

Phillips’ house, which sits between the barns and equipment building, barely sustained any damage in the storm, although Phillips said that in the immediate aftermath he was worried the house would be destroyed.

“I was almost sure the house was going to be damaged right after it hit,” he said. “With the way that it hit the barn, I knew it had to come by the house, so I was worried it got hit.”

There was very minor damage to the garage and straw from the nearby barn covered the house, which was the extent of the damage to the house, according to Phillips.

His was not the only property damaged due to the storm. He said he heard there were other properties near the Cave Road area that had sustained damage from Saturday evening’s storms as well.

Overall, Phillips said that he was thankful that nobody was harmed during the storm.