Strongest tornado since 1983 strikes Los Angeles County, California

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Monday, March 27, 2023

A map of Montebello within Los Angeles County and the county within California.
Image: Ixnayonthetimmay.

On Wednesday, a tornado hit Los Angeles County, California, US, inflicting, according to the National Weather Service, minor injuries on a person and damaging at least 17 buildings.

The National Weather Service estimated the tornado's peak winds reached 110 miles per hour (177 kilometers per hour), classifying it as EF-1; touching down in Montebello, it was the county's most severe tornado since 1983.

The National Weather Service noted the tornado, shifting into Los Angeles, battered vehicles, destroyed skylights, crushed a building's roof, cleft a utility pole, and tore a pine tree's foot-wide trunk from its roots.

On Tuesday, an EF-0 tornado damaged 25 mobile homes in Carpinteria, California, in Santa Barbara County and, according to National Weather Service employees, inflicted minor damage to trees in a nearby cemetery.

Tornadoes are uncommon in California — average annual estimates for the state range from fewer than 10 to 11 — and, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported, rarely build strength or attain longevity.

According to CNN, recent months saw flooding and at least 12 atmospheric rivers bring flooding and hurricane-force winds to California. On Tuesday, a San Francisco-area storm killed at least five people, while downing over 700 trees and limbs, as well as power lines; the city noted it received reports of high-rise buildings shedding glass and other debris.