Tornado in Clinton leaves damaged homes, cars and trees: ‘I saw rotating clouds, debris going in a circle’
Residents in Clinton are still cleaning up after a tornado touched down in a small section of town, downing trees, smashing windows and lifting siding and roofing off houses.
The National Weather Service confirmed Thursday evening it was a tornado. Neighbors in three separate parts of the neighborhood told MassLive they saw cloud rotation before seeking shelter.
David Trinque lives on Beech Street and was working at his job about a mile away at Jabil when he said he saw the storm sweep into the neighborhood from a window at the health care manufacturing facility.
“I saw rotating clouds, debris going in a circle,” Trinque said.
His wife Diane was home and said she looked out the window to see the tree in front of their house bending sideways. The tree later came crashing down, blocking the street. Hours later crews were still clearing the debris to reopen the road.
Behind the Trinque’s home, a pergola had lifted from their pool area, crashed through a fence and landed upside down. The siding was ripped off a portion of their home and the pool house had broken windows.
Throughout the neighborhood, there were similar scenes with trees down as crews worked to cut and remove them. Residents gathered outside to survey the damage and share what they saw. In addition to public safety and cleanup crews, insurance vehicles were seen driving through the neighborhood.
The National Weather Service had issued a tornado warning for Clinton at the time the damage occurred. Residents reported seeing a fast-moving storm with large drops of rain coming down sideways for just a minute or two. Moments earlier it had been sunny.
Storm damage was also observed on California Court, less than a mile southwest of the neighborhood, as well as some isolated tree damage between the two areas.
Clinton Police Chief Brian Coyne says the town was lucky.
“There were no injuries,” Coyne said. “We had some property damage, a tree on a house, some damaged vehicles. We’re very, very lucky.”
Coyne said he and a representative from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency were out assessing the damage.
The area where the storm hit is a tightly compact residential neighborhood off Water Street.
“A few streets over, hardly a leaf turned,” Coyne said.