The National Weather Service in Jackson is sending a team to assess damage from Tuesday storms in Oktibbeha and Clay counties to officially determine whether they produced a tornado.
A severe thunderstorm front that rolled through the Golden Triangle starting at about 1:30 p.m. felled trees and caused some damage in the area, according to county emergency management directors. That included two trees that fell on the Mississippi State University campus, Oktibbeha EMA Director Kristen Campanella said.
One of those trees fell behind the Chapel of Memories and landed on three vehicles, with limbs damaging two others. The other tree fell next to the Cobb Institute across Hardy Boulevard in front of Middleton Hall. No injuries were reported.
Starkville Police Department reported on social media that a tree fell across South Montgomery Street near Dollar General but that was cleaned up quickly.
NWS also reports damage from fallen trees in northern Oktibbeha, as well as damage across Clay County.
Nicholas Fenner, with NWS, said meteorologists began tracking the rotation of the storm on radar in Oktibbeha County and it picked up around the MSU campus before picking up steam in Clay County and heading into Monroe County toward the Mississippi-Alabama state line.
Clay County EMA Director Torrey Williams reported even though there were no injuries, there is damage to personal property, homes and businesses across the eastern part of the county. There are also some properties in West Point that have damage from the storm.
Williams said the storm traveled in a south to north direction according to the path of damage and reports from radar, and meteorologists reported there was rotation over Clay County.
“Right now we are going over videos from residents and others who were in the area to see if we have a confirmed tornado touchdown in the county,” Williams said. “Right now the damage is consistent with high winds or even a tornado, but we are waiting on the National Weather Service to arrive.”
Some people in Clay County are still without power, but 4-County is working on restoring it, Williams said.
Only minimal damage was reported in Lowndes County, per EMA Director Cindy Lawrence. One tree was reported down across the road right at the Mississippi-Alabama state line, and there were no injuries or tornadoes reported in the county.
The NWS reported the Columbus Air Force Base recording one and a half inches of rain, and there was no data yet for the Golden Triangle Airport.