WASHINGTON — The National Weather Service confirmed that a tornado touched down in Howard County Tuesday afternoon.
Matt Elliott, a NWS meteorologist, tells WTOP that the “high-end EF0” tornado touched down at 1:29 p.m. and lifted at 1:48 p.m.
“Anything more than 10 minutes, especially for around here, is a fairly long time for a tornado to last,” Elliott said.
In those nearly 20 minutes, the tornado traveled 12.75 miles, traveling across the western and central portions of the county.
“Most of our tornadoes here are quick spinups, so it is rare for it to have a somewhat long track in terms of 10 miles or so,” Elliott said. “It’s not something that happens very often.”
The tornado had winds of up to 80 mph with a path width of 500 yards.
According to the NWS, the initial touchdown occurred near the intersection of Old Annapolis Road and St. Michaels Road, just southwest of Lisbon. Properties there sustained tree damage with multiple trees snapped, uprooted and topped in multiple directions. A large garage had its doors bowed by the wind and small objects were lifted, the NWS says.
The tornado continued toward the southeast, passing through the areas of Glenwood and Glenelg, before lifting just before Ellicott City in the vicinity of Manor Lane and Carroll Mill Road.
Elliott says the tornado caused mainly tree damage and very little structural damage.
The Howard County Public School System says in a statement that there will be no summer school at Howard High School on Wednesday due to a power outage. Classes at Oakland Mills High School and the Applications and Research Lab will open on time.
Seven other county school buildings — Glenelg High School, Marriotts Ridge High School, West Friendship Elementary School, Manor Woods Elementary School, Triadelphia Ridge Elementary School, Swansfield Elementary School and Rockburn Elementary School — were also without power, the school system says, and camps at locations without power were canceled.