Two tornadoes hit the Carson and Compton area Thursday morning, causing damage to businesses and leaving debris strewn around.
The National Weather Service confirmed that a brief EF0 tornado occurred near the border of the two cities. Later Thursday night, NWS confirms a second EF0 tornado occurred about 13 minutes later, just a few miles east of the first tornado.
“Based on broadcast media video, there was minor damage to buildings, vehicle damage from debris, and tree damage,” the agency tweeted.
Damage caused by the weather event suggested that the incident had peak winds of 75 mph, according to a preliminary storm report from the NWS.
Around 8:55 a.m., the Los Angeles County Fire Department was called to 169th and Walnut streets for a downed tree amid what was previously described as a strong weather cell went through the area.
Aerial video from Sky5 showed other damage, including pieces of torn-off roofs and debris blown around.
The L.A. County Department of Public Works also responded to the scene to clear any downed trees and assess the damage.
Residents and workers reported they felt buildings shake and they thought there was a low-flying plane overhead. The tornado knocked out power to businesses along Avalon Boulevard.
A plumbing and appliance distribution company in the area ended up with a large hole in its roof. Warehouse manager Garrett Simmons said his workers had to shelter in place as debris started flying.
“A big piece of metal flew on by, and some stuff started blowing in the warehouse, so I turned around and walked back and the ceiling started peeling back,” Simmons said, adding that the ordeal lasted only about a minute.
Adam McCallister, who works nearby, said he had never seen anything like it before.
“It just kind of came in, dropped on us and then just disappeared,” he detailed.
In Compton, dark storm clouds loomed while debris floated in the air, video posted by Twitter user @Aldough__ showed.
The second tornado on Thursday morning developed near the interaction of Greenleaf Boulevard and Santa Fe Avenue in Compton. Estimated wind speeds reached 65 miles per hour.
The tornado “produced a very narrow path of damage including a downed power line, tarps town from a nursery, minor roof damage to a home, download small tree limbs and siding damage to a couple of homes,” said NWS.
An EF1 tornado touched down in Montebello on March 22 during another powerful storm. A month later, businesses were still suffering because of the damage caused then.
Thursday’s event occurred during a late-season rainstorm that has once again pummeled the Southland.
The storms Wednesday night into Thursday morning brought heavy rainfall, snow and even isolated reports of lightning.
Coastal and valley areas faced the possibility of 0.5 to 1 inch of rain, while 1 to 2 inches was expected in mountain and foothill areas, according to the National Weather Service.