Tornado Tears Through Hocking County Town

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LAURELVILLE (WOUB) — Residents of one Hocking County village are still picking up the pieces after a tornado tore through town as part of a string of severe weather on Memorial Day.

A National Weather Service map of areas in Ohio where circulations, potentially producing tornadoes, impacted parts of our region. Tornadoes did not necessarily occur in every indicated area, but multiple tornadoes have occurred May 27 and 28, 2019.

An EF2 tornado was confirmed in Laurelville, and according to the National Weather Service, that type of tornado can pack winds between 111 mph and 135 mph.

The speed and power of the damaging winds left residents astonished.

“I used to have a large barn here, a big barn, and we have no idea where any of it is. The posts were 20-feet-long, but we can’t find any of them,” said Dave Winland. “Pretty awesome power.”

Winland said he’s never experienced a storm like the one he saw on Monday, and almost as soon as the storm came in, it had disappeared, along with his property.

“Before I knew it, I mean, I could hear it coming from over the hills,” Winland said. “After just a few minutes, it was all gone. It was just that fast.”

Deanna Dyer, a resident of one of the hardest hit streets, Union Road, saw the second story of her home destroyed in no time.

“Instantly,” Dyer said.

Hocking County 911 director Sandy Wintermute said there were 20 calls from the area about the storm, beginning about 1:18 a.m. There have been no injuries reported. 

Hocking County wasn’t the only part of the region to see tornadic activity. Another tornado was reported in Vinton County Monday night, along with the beginnings of a weak EF1 tornado near Muskingum County. At least 8 tornadoes were confirmed in the state as of Tuesday.