Residents shared scary moments and photos of the storm as it passed over the major metropolitan area. A truck driver shared a video of the tornado damage after she took a “direct hit,” Weather Nation reported. WSB-TV reported the tornado touched down in the area of MLK Jr. Dr. and Fairburn Rd. in the Adamsville area.
The Weather Channel shared radar images which confirmed a tornado touchdown just before 10:30 a.m.
A tornado watch remains in effect for the Atlanta metro area until 4 p.m., the National Weather Service reported. A flash flood warning has also been issued.
Here’s what you need to know:
Meteorologists Said the Tornado Could Have Caused Substantial Damage in Atlanta
Meteorologist Matthew Cappucci emphasized that Atlanta residents were fortunate that the tornado did not cause major damage. Locals shared photos of the tornado and wrote about terrifying moments during the touchdown.
“Super scary a.m. in #Atlanta. #Tornado touched down 3 miles from my house!” Kimberly Krautter wrote on Twitter.
Rob DiRienzo of Fox 5 Atlanta shared a photo of the skyline with foreboding skies.
“Dark clouds are hanging over midtown Atlanta with tornado warning in effect until 11:15 a.m.,” he wrote on Twitter.
He later shared a video of the damage.
“In South Fulton, the storm sent large sheets of metal and roofing flying. Tree limbs and debris are covering this street,” he wrote.
Christian Jennings of WSB-TV shared a photo of heavy rainfall from Roswell during the tornado watch.
“Still pouring here in Roswell. Stay with @wsbtv all day today. We’re still under a tornado watch for most of metro Atlanta,” she wrote.
“I want to stress just how lucky downtown #Atlanta was moments ago. They won’t always be so lucky,” Cappucci wrote on Twitter. “It appears the tornado made it as far east as where the Perimeter meets I-20. Tornadoes can – and do – hit major metropolitan areas. There’s no protective bubble over cities.”
He issued a warning to residents with radar, which showed “confirmed tornado, potentially significant, moving towards Atlanta.” He marked a debris field from the tornado on the radar, and wrote “Downtown Atlanta in immediate path. Seek shelter now!”
“Breaking: a #tornado is moving directly for downtown #Atlanta,” he wrote on Twitter. “If you are in the city, seek shelter now! If you know someone in the metro, call them now and tell them to head underground. This tornado is lofting debris and is on the ground.”
Others chimed in with their experience of the tornado touchdown.
“When I was fixing breakfast, I noticed that the rain had stopped, then the lightning started getting very frequent and intense, then a tornado warning was issued for Atlanta,” a person responded on Twitter.
The Weather Channel shared an update after the touchdown was reported, saying that “a few tornados are possible” during the tornado watch until 4 p.m.
“#Tornado watch has been issued until 4pm EDT for parts of Georgia and east-central Alabama. A few tornadoes are possible, along with wind gusts up to 70 mph,” The Weather Channel wrote on Twitter.
The Weather Channel also shared a radar image of the confirmed tornado. The tornado warning effected Douglas and Fulton counties and Atlanta and East Point.
“Tornado warning issued for a portion of the Atlanta metro area until 10:45 a.m. EDT. This is radar confirmed tornado,” The Weather Channel wrote.
The National Weather Service alerts are in effect for Baldwin, Barrow, Bartow, Bibb, Butts, Carroll, Chattahoochee, Cherokee, Clarke, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, Crawford, Dekalb, Douglas, Fayette, Floyd, Forsyth, Fulton, Greene, Gwinnett, Hancock, Haralson, Harris, Heard, Henry, Jasper, Jones, Lamar, Marion, Meriwether, Monroe, Morgan, Muscogee, Newton, Oconee, Oglethorpe, Paulding, Pike, Polk, Putnam, Rockdale, Spalding, Talbot, Taliaferro, Taylor, Troup, Upson, Walton, Warren and Wilkes counties.
The National Weather Service in Peachtree City, Georgia warned a tornado was possible throughout the watch period until 4 p.m., and said thunderstorms with hail up to one inch, frequent lightning and damage-causing winds were likely throughout the day May 3.
“Scattered thunderstorms are likely across much of the area today,” the National Weather Service said in a Hazardous Weather Outlook. “Some could be strong to isolated severe with hail up to one inch, damaging winds, heavy rain, and frequent lightning as the primary threats. A brief tornado is also possible.”
Everything Georgia also shared a video on Twitter from Fulton Industrial, which showed damage from heavy winds following the tornado.
“A tornado touched down in Atlanta this morning. This is from Fulton Industrial..,” the outlet wrote on Twitter.
A Tornado Hit Atlanta in 2008, Causing Major Damage & Multiple Deaths
The 2021 tornado was not the first time a tornado touchdown was reported in Atlanta. A tornado with 130-mph winds swept through Atlanta the night of March 15, 2008, causing damage to homes, businesses and other buildings, including several iconic buildings.
There were at least a dozen tornados that touched down that weekend, including one that formed in the middle of the city’s downtown tourism district. WSBTV reported that tornado was a first in Atlanta’s recorded history.
WSBTV reported the tornado was categorized as an EF-2 tornado. The 200-yard-wide tornado “cut a 6-mile path through downtown,” moving along the Atlanta skyline for 12 minutes and causing extensive damage to the Georgia World Congress Center, the Westin Peachtree Plaza and the Equitable Building.
At least two people were killed in the storms, and tens of thousands of people were left without power for days, WSBTV reported.
A Tornado Near Yazoo City, Mississippi Was Captured on Photos & Videos Yesterday
The Yazoo City, Mississippi area was hit by a major storm which produced a tornado the evening of Sunday, May 2, WJTV reported. Several storm chasers and locals captured photos and videos of the tornado.
“Crazy close tornado video from drone. I had to make a quick getaway and drone didn’t make it as it got caught in the inflow and I lost connection as tornado was cutting me off from the drone. #mswx #tornado,” Storm Chaser Brian Emfinger wrote on Twitter.
Charles Peek, a storm chaser and field reporter for The Weather Channel also captured footage of the “large, multi-vortex tornado” in Mississippi.
“Large multi-vortex tornado in Yazoo County, MS just south of Yazoo City earlier tonight. Video shows tornado forming and then quickly going to wedge and crossing the road in front of me. @weatherchannel #tornado #mswx @JimCantore @StephanieAbrams,” Peek wrote on Twitter.
“LARGE & STORNG TORNADO INCOMING TO SE side of Yazoo City, MS. @NWSJacksonMS,” wrote Stephen Jones, sharing a photo of the tornado.
“Another image of the Yazoo City tornado that happened earlier,” wrote WxAtlantic. “Absolutely insane.”