COLON, Mich. — The National Weather Service is set to survey damage to determine if a tornado touched down in Colon after Wednesday's severe storms.
The agency will determine if the damage was caused by straight line winds or if it was actually a tornado.
Mill Race Storage, off E. State Street, had a couple buildings damaged including part of a building's roof torn off and around half a dozen garage doors bent up.
Cleanup at the storage facility began just after 5 a.m. Thursday. Workers could be seen removing what was left of the metal roof to one of the buildings and cleaning up debris.
Many of the belongings inside the damaged units appeared to be untouched.
Debris was strewn throughout the storage facility's property and beyond. It could be seen in the fields across the street and in a neighbor's yard next door.
Employees at a factory next door to the storage facility said the power went out just after 11 p.m. on Wednesday. It came back on about four hours later.
The National Weather Service is expected to survey damage later this morning to determine if the area had straight line winds or if a tornado actually touched down. pic.twitter.com/SBJJy55CCY
— Lauren Kummer (@LaurenKummerTV) July 13, 2023
The National Weather Service (NWS) is expected to survey the damage on Thursday morning. That is when final confirmation will become available on if a tornado actually touched down.
Researchers will make the determination based on the pattern of the destruction. They'll look for a very chaotic path, like fallen trees crisscrossing each other and debris strewn everywhere rather than in a straight line. Trees upturned from the storms will be the biggest indicators. NWS says the bigger the tree, the better as they tell a more clear story than small branches or trunks.
The National Weather Service will use a compass to determine which way each tree was pushed and look for obvious signs of circular motion in the path from the ground and above.
They add tornadoes and microbursts can cause the same amount of damage, so the severity is not always the dead-giveaway some may think it is.
Tornado warnings were issued for the area Wednesday night after rotation was noted in the system.
Microburst damage often looks laid or flattened out. Larger uprooted trees point in the same direction, or a fan shaped dirvergent pattern.
—National Weather Service, How the NWS determins Wind Damage and Tornadoes
FOX 17 will continue to bring updates as they become available.