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A Tornado May Have Touched Down In New Orleans' Carrollton, Broadmoor And Algiers Point Neighborhoods

TORNADO_NOLA_5.20
Patrick Madden
/
WWNO
Damage in the Uptown neighborhood of New Orleans from what may have been tornado on May 12, 2021.

Meteorologists will soon determine whether a tornado touched down in New Orleans early Wednesday morning. The storm caused damage in the Carrollton, Broadmoor and Algiers Point neighborhoods.

There have been no reports of injuries, according to a press release from the city.

National Weather Service (NWS) forecaster Kevin Gilmore told New Orleans Public Radio's Diane Mack they will need to survey the damage on the ground and then rate the possible tornado on what's called an Enhanced Fujita Scale from 0 to 5.

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Patrick Madden
A fallen tree limb on a car in Uptown, New Orleans after a possible tornado swept through the neighborhood on May 12, 2021.

NWS coordination meteorologist Lauren Nash is touring the damage across the city, assessing damage to trees and homes in order to determine wind speed. During a morning press conference, she said she expected to have an answer this afternoon regarding whether it was a tornado.

“It could have been multiple small tornados or one long thunderstorm path,” she said. “We just don’t know yet.”

About 4,000 homes and businesses were without power as of 1 p.m., according to Entergy. That was down from 10,000 earlier in the morning.

Photos on social media show damaged cars from fallen power lines and down trees. A flash flood watch has been in effect for most of southern Louisiana since 4:43 a.m. and will remain in effect until 6 p.m. Neutral ground parking is allowed until 6 p.m.

There's "no indication" that we're seeing more frequent tornadoes in the New Orleans region, but with social media and technology, "we have more reports of tornadoes,” Gilmore said. He added that tornadoes are not "uncommon" in the spring when there is frequently severe weather.

This story has been updated throughout

Support for the Coastal Desk comes from the Greater New Orleans Foundation, the Walton Family Foundation, and local listeners.

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