154 homes damaged in Port Orange, FL by Tornado

By: WOFL Fox 35 Orlando
By: WOFL Fox 35 Orlando

A suspected tornado damaged a total of 154 homes Friday, according to estimates by the Volusia County Property Appraiser's office and Port Orange building officials. Three subdivisions -- Laurelwood Estates, Lighthouse Pointe, and Brandy Hills – took the brunt of the severe storms.

Officials said 60 homes sustained major damages, including three that were destroyed and are uninhabitable. Another 43 houses had minor damage, and 48 more have minimal damage.

Trees were uprooted, roofs and siding were ripped from homes and debris was strewn across roads and yards. One person was injured due to flying glass,

The Red Cross is providing residents and rescue workers with food, water, tarps, rakes, and clean-up kits. Port Orange Fire-Rescue is assisting residents with putting tarps on roofs and public works employees are continuing to remove debris.

Police guarded the entrances to both subdivisions to prevent looting Friday night, and are continuing to limit access to the neighborhoods. Residents are being asked to show proof of identification upon entry.

Officials are working this weekend to determine a total dollar amount for the damages, and the Small Business Administration will be visiting on Monday to determine if uninsured residents will be eligible for low interest loans in order to make home repairs.

Port Orange officials are also encouraging residents to make sure contractors who are licensed and insured. Visit MyFlorida.com or contact the city.

In addition to the possible tornado, three to four water spouts are believed to have moved onshore in the Ormond Beach-Daytona Beach area. Officers with the Daytona Beach Police Department first spotted funnel cloud formations in the weather system which moved southeast across the city after slamming Flagler County.

Around 6:12 p.m. Friday, Volusia County Fire Rescue reported treating a man who had been struck by lightning. The 52-year-old was hit near 192 Grenada Avenue in Daytona Beach and transported to a nearby hospital. His condition is unknown at this time.

The storm also resulted in a number of power outages throughout Central Florida. At its peak, Progress Energy reported approximately 2,000 were without power in Volusia and Orange counties. Florida Power and Light said an additional 929 were in the dark around the cities of Port Orange and Sanford.

The National Weather Service in Melbourne reports that the storm popped up quickly to the north earlier in the evening. It was caused by a "sea-breeze merger" when winds coming off both coasts met and caused the storm's rotation.

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