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Weather service confirms 3 EF1 tornadoes touched down in Arkansas

By John Moritz

This article was originally published March 14, 2016 at 7:16 a.m. Updated March 14, 2016 at 5:41 p.m.

a-severe-storm-toppled-a-tree-in-wye

A severe storm toppled a tree in Wye.

5:40 p.m. UPDATE

The National Weather Service has confirmed a third EF1 tornado touched down in Arkansas on Sunday, this one in Chicot County.

The weather's service Jackson, Miss., office said about 5:20 p.m. Monday that damage in Dermott was from an EF1 tornado touching down during the Sunday night storms.

Read Tuesday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

5:15 p.m. UPDATE

Gov. Asa Hutchinson has declared three more counties as disaster areas after storms last week that caused flooding throughout the state.

Columbia, Prairie and Scott counties bring the total number of counties declared as disaster areas to 16.

The other 13 counties are: Arkansas, Ashley, Bradley, Calhoun, Chicot, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Jefferson, Lincoln, Monroe, Ouachita and Phillips.

Read Tuesday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

1:45 p.m. UPDATE

Damage to the buildings and boat docks at the Mountain Harbor Resort and Spa in Montgomery County on Sunday was caused by a tornado, the National Weather Service said Monday.

The tornado was rated an EF1 on the 0 to 5 enhanced Fujita scale, meaning a maximum wind speed of between 86 and 110 mph, according to the weather service.

The tornado touched down around 4:45 p.m. and traveled about 1.7 miles and into Lake Ouachita, according to the weather service.

Read Tuesday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

1:18 p.m. UPDATE

A tornado with wind speeds of up to 110 mph touched down along a 4.4-mile path in Scott County on Sunday afternoon, the National Weather Service confirmed Monday.

The weather service rated the tornado an EF-1 along the 0 to 5 enhanced Fujita scale.

The tornado uprooted trees and damaged several buildings after touching down just before 4 p.m. southwest of Waldron, according to a notice from the weather service. No injuries were reported.

Earlier

Meteorologists with the National Weather Service were fanning out over parts of Arkansas Monday to investigate and determine the strength of several tornadoes that were reported to have touched down during Sunday's storms.

Michael Brown, a meteorologist with the weather service in North Little Rock, said the office will investigate any damage left behind, determine if a tornado caused it and, if so, rate the tornado's strength.

Investigators were sent to locations near Grady in Lincoln County, Winfield in Scott County and Mount Ida in Montgomery County, Brown said.

The tornado that was reported to have touched down near Mount Ida damaged boat docks at the Mountain Harbor Spring Resort, according to online reports posted with the weather service. The resort said on Facebook that three docks sustained major damage.

That same tornado moved northeast and was later reported to be crossing Interstate 40 near Mayflower, Brown said.

Social media footage of a tornado funnel near Grady all but confirmed the official presence of a touch down there, Brown said.

In Wye, winds toppled trees along a section of Arkansas 300, where just down the road a stand of flowering dogwood trees appeared untouched in an open field.

A section of metal roof was blown off the Wye United Methodist Church and crews were seen traversing the area assessing damage and clearing the roads of fallen trees.

Arkansas Department of Correction spokesman Solomon Graves says a prison at Malvern had windows broken by hail and a prison at Dermott has roof damage from high winds and a prison guard sprained an ankle during the storm.

A list of reported damage with the weather service's Storm Prediction Center shows that trees and power lines were knocked down across a swath of south and central Arkansas.

The most property damage, however, came from golf-ball sized hail that damaged cars in some areas, Brown said.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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