Tornadoes in Arizona? In October? It’s a rare combination, but it happened early Wednesday in the Flagstaff area as several twisters touched down, causing some significant damage.
The most significant tornado hit the town of Bellemont, west of Flagstaff. The Arizona Daily Sun reported several dozen homes and businesses damaged and a freight train blown off the tracks, but no major injuries.
“The hammering that northern Arizona is getting right now is exceptional,” National Weather Service meteorologist Ken Waters in Phoenix told the Associated Press. “It’s not uncommon this time of year to have one or two tornado reports or a warning, but this is quite an outbreak.”
Here are a couple videos posted to YouTube that show the damage in Bellemont; one is a TV news report, the second an amateur video (note the tremendous amount of hail that accompanied the storm):
And here’s a gallery of tornado damage photos from the Arizona Daily Sun.