BURLINGTON, N.C. — An EF1 tornado tore through the southwest side of Burlington Thursday, leaving a narrow, but destructive scene in its wake.
Neighborhoods in the Springwood area, just north of I-40, saw a clear path where the tornado struck with winds howling near 100 miles per hour, according to the National Weather Service.
"Tt’s strange because it hit and missed stuff!' Ingle Park resident Cindy Sparks said, "My backyard I had a ‘fridgerator flipped upside down. 150 pound smoker, flipped it upside down! My hot tub is sitting there with the lid on it, hardly rattled."
Dozens of homes could be seen in need of roof or siding repair in the Springwood neighborhoods near Ethan's Way. Multiple contracted repair crews bustled on rooftops to start what will surely be multiple days of cleanup work, one roofer estimated.
An example of the wind's force could be found at Springwood Presbyterian Church. The church's 50-year-old pavilion was toppled, wooden stilts snapped clean from their concrete bases. The pavilion fell away from the church, settling against a large tree. Springwood Presbyterian officials are thankful no one was hurt.
"We know the weight of this structure is nothing to a tornado," Pastor Marybeth Asher-Lawson said, "It could easily have picked it up and slung it through someone's home across the street. The fact that the tree grabbed a hold of it and it didn't move after that, to me, is just a huge reminder of how God stands between us and the powers of evil."
"And for that, we're very grateful." Asher-Lawson continued.