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National Weather Service Investigating Possible Tornado At Mall



Alex Lloyd Gross- Photo-Delaware Valley News.com You can see the trees snapped in half. The fact that horizontal wires are still intact could help the NWS determine what came through the mall.

by Alex Lloyd Gross

It could have been a small tornado, or a funnel cloud that caused the damage at Philadelphia Mills ( Formerly Franklin Mills ) Mall.  What ever it was, it  was not just a few trees blown over.  Shortly after 10:30 AM August 4 2020, what sounded like a train came over the old Wal-Mart  and the old Path Mark stores, located on the grounds of the mall. Part of the roof blew off  and it took some air conditioner units with it.

Both buildings are vacant and there were no injuries.  The old Wal-Mart building is being renovated into a storage area. Workers were inside when they heard the wind. Not only was the roof torn up from both buildings, there was a large debris field. It is how the debris fell and where it landed which is going to tell investigators what happened.

Alex Lloyd Gross- Photo-Delaware Valley News.com The debris field of tree branches lays across Knights Road.

 

A swath of trees were heavily damaged. They were not uprooted, but they were snapped in the middle.  Large branches were covering the travel lanes of Knights Road in both directions, making it impassable.  There was no loss of power to the mall area. Several streets around the mall , on Medford Road did lose power. As investigators with the National Weather Service gather their evidence they will make their determination as to what caused the damage. Those findings will be made public within a few days.

Dawn Altstatt photo-Special to Delaware valley News.com The roof and materials sits in the parking lot.

 

The actual mall was not damaged. The mall was open and continues to be open  and was not affected by this incident.   It is not uncommon that a hurricane or funnel clouds form from hurricanes or tropical storms. This happened during Tropical Storm Isias as it came through the area.

 

 

 

 

 


Alex Lloyd Gross
Alex Lloyd Gross has the reputation for aggressive news coverage. With over 40 years experience including working at The News Gleaner, and had his work published in books and magazines that span the entire globe. With a strong background in emergency service related topics, he can bring forth a perspective that others cannot.
A contributor to Starfile Photo Agency for 20 years, Alex has been given access to and has photographed luminaries of both stage and screen.
He now shares his talent with you.

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3 Responses “National Weather Service Investigating Possible Tornado At Mall”

  1. Mandy
    August 5, 2020 at 8:46 am

    At just the mall? It swept down Medford Road in Parkwood and the head toward Dunksferry Road. It took down large trees, roof blew away, there was a trampoline left in the middle of the road upside down, some people had their decks and awnings collapse in their back yards. There was a tornado 100%. Every tree along Academy Road across from Decatur School were knocked down in the road. We seen it blow by, the neighbors heard it coming they said, sounded like a freight train coming toward us Is how they described it. They ran for the basement. We still have homes without power.

  2. William Proctor
    August 6, 2020 at 6:30 am

    I was one of the workers in the old Wal-Mart. It was a surprise. Lasted about 10 seconds. Ripped 3 exhausts off the roof. And destroyed 6 RTU systems. Pipes were thrown threw the roof like spears. Alot of damage done in short time

  3. Deb
    August 7, 2020 at 5:36 am

    Most insurance won’t pay for tornado claims that are an act of God. Just sayin for all the people that had their roofs blown off.

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