8 hurt; 10 homes destroyed in Florence tornado

  • Posted: Thursday, July 4, 2013 12:01 a.m.
Windy Hill Fire Department firefighter Noah Hendricks walks to his engine amid a demolished mobile home Tuesday after a tornado hit the Rosewood Mobile Home Park.

A tornado destroyed at least nine homes and damaged eight others at a mobile home park in Florence County on Tuesday night.

At least seven people were hurt but none of the injuries were life threatening, mostly involving cuts and bruises, the emergency medical services director said.

Three people were trapped in one of the homes for a time, said Kristy Hughes with the county emergency management division.

There were no deaths among the 42 people who lived in the mobile home park.

Sheriff’s Capt. Mike Nunn says nine homes are being evaluated for possible damage.

The National Weather Service surveyed the damage Wednesday and determined it was caused by a tornado with winds up to 105 mph. The storm was about 90 yards wide and had a 3-mile-long damage path.

Underground power served the mobile home park, Hughes said, but many of the homes were moved off their foundations. An electrician was going to review each home to determine if it was safe to restore power.

The American Red Cross set up a shelter at Wilson High School for those affected by the storm.

Hughes said there was a large wreck on Interstate 95 in Florence County about the same time involving five tractor-trailer rigs that shut down the highway for a time.

The storm was isolated, but was embedded in the much larger system that has brought rains and flooding to the area for several days, said Rick Kreitner with the National Weather Service Office in Wilmington, N.C.

“It’s been like a conveyer belt of moisture, mainly causing flooding,” he said. “This is an air mass that is unstable and it doesn’t take much to create a thunderstorm.”

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