Officials conferenced this morning at Manzanita City Hall to discuss clean-up efforts from Friday’s tornado and coordinate preparations for more severe weather forecast this afternoon.
By Ann Powers
City Manager Jerry Taylor emphasized the best thing people can do is stay inside and stay away.
Officials said Friday’s tornado came ashore at 8:18 a.m and headed northeast toward U.S. Highway 101. It left 128 structures damaged and destroyed one-third of the city’s trees.
“The tornado continued to the northeast to the intersection of Laneda Avenue and 3rd Street, where the most severe damage occurred,” reported National Weather Service (NWS) staff in Portland. “This is also where the tornado reached its maximum width of 700 feet. The tornado weakened as it continued northeast and dissipated near the intersection of Division Street and Fir Street.”
Tillamook People’s Utility District officials said nearly 3,000 PUD customers were without power. Crews worked up until midnight last night, and were back at it by 6 a.m today, restoring electricity.
Approximately 1,800 Manzinata customers were affected, and 1,000 customers in Bayside Gardens and Necarney City lost service.
A second tornado was also reported in Oceanside on Friday at 9:09 a.m. Fortunately, like the Manzanita twister, there were no reported injuries or deaths.
NWS has issued another severe weather warning through 8 p.m. tonight for communities lining the Pacific Northwest coast. Nehalem Bay Fire & District Chief Perry Sherbaugh said crews are on stand-by to take action if and when disaster strikes.
Some reports indicated the storm may blow over coastal communities, but Manzanita Mayor Gary Bullard said people should still take every precaution necessary to ensure their safety.
“Don’t be too optimistic,” Bullard warned. “The worse may be yet to come.”
The Emergency Volunteer Corp of Nehalem Bay (EVCNB) has about 30 volunteers on hand for assistance, and the Red Cross of American has set up an emergency shelter at the North Coast Recreation District, at 36155 9th St. in Nehalem.
“That speaks to our community,” said EVCNB Director Linda Kozlowski. “They came through with force.”
Check back with the Tillamook Headlight Herald and the North Coast Citizen websites and Facebook pages for more information as it becomes available.