NWS: 90 mph Wind, but Not Tornado, Caused NH Damage

Published 07/05 2014 08:14PM

Updated 07/05 2014 08:30PM

GRAFTON, N.H. - The National Weather Service in Gray, Maine says straight line winds, and not a tornado, caused serious damage in Central New Hampshire Thursday night.

Based on a survey conducted Saturday, forecasters say winds averaged 55-65 mph along a 7 mile stretch of Grafton around 8:20 p.m. In a few spots, localized downbursts produced winds closer to 90 mph.

Thousands of trees were downed along the path of the storm, which runs from the Kinsman Highway to Prescott Hill Road, across Route 4, and onto Meadow Road.

Minor roof and window damage was also reported in the area.

The weather service also found evidence of a gustnado in two areas, one along Prescott Hill Road and another near Meadow Road. A gustnado is essentially low level rotation, or a turning of straight line winds in the lowest levels of the atmosphere. That can sometimes be the result of local terrain.

Unlike a gustnado, a tornado is made of rotation that extends from the ground all the way to the cloud above.

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