Tornado wreaks havoc on Jacksonville-area neighborhood

NEAR JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (WSVN) — A tornado ripped through a Florida neighborhood, Thursday, uprooting trees and destroying dozens of buildings.

According to the National Weather Service, the twister traveled four miles before it lost steam. Security footage from one of the homes near Jacksonville where the storm hit captured the violent rains and winds of up to 100 mph.

Area residents said the EF-1 tornado left them in suspense. “We started hearing, like, ‘snap, cracle, pop,’ and the trees start falling,” said a man.

“I put my kids in the laundry room to be safe,” said Nicole Pokines.

“I saw the rain start swirling, and I saw it go completely horizontal, and then it started turning green,” said witness Marc Crutchfield.

Crutchfield then saw the twister heading toward his house, and he jumped into action to protect his wife. “As it was hitting, I laid her down and I checked back at the front door again, and I saw the rain stop and then reverse in the other direction,” he said.

Surveillance video showed the storm striking a parking lot in a matter of seconds. On the upper left corner, a trucking container is seen being lifted and then flipped on its side.

“It sounded like a train coming through our yard. The building started shaking,” said a woman who lives in the neighborhood.

In all, eight containers were damaged. Eventually, some of the containers were turned upright.

“It’s insane, it’s scary,” said the woman.

No one was hurt.

American Red Cross volunteers visited the area on Friday to distribute water, food and cleanup kits. They’re also helping storm victims with short-term housing.

Copyright 2018 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.