Weather Service: Winds, not tornado appeared to cause Boardman’s damage

An investigator with the National Weather Service in Cleveland toured the damaged areas on Monday

Damage at Sweeney Buick GMC in Boardman.
Damage at Sweeney Buick GMC in Boardman.


BOARDMAN, Ohio (WKBN) – A storm that rolled through Boardman on Sunday night was not a tornado, according to the National Weather Service, but it did cause quite a mess.

The storm brought a tree down through the roof of a home on Shorehaven Drive and scattered debris between Market Street and Glenwood Avenue.

Leigh Carrabia said she was watching TV with her mom when the storm hit.

“A big flash of lighting and it sounded like a train was coming through the house. I’ve never heard anything that loud in my entire life,” she said, recalling the moment when the house started shaking.

Just two door away, another big tree fell on Chuck Rudge’s house just as he and his daughter were looking out an upstairs bedroom window at the storm. The tree sliced through the roof and landed on the bed just a few feet from where both of them were standing, but no one was hurt.

An investigator with the National Weather Service’s office in Cleveland toured those damaged areas Monday afternoon with Boardman’s fire chief.

The two stopped at several locations, including the Sweeney Buick GMC dealership, which was also heavily damaged by the storm.

“The pressure that caused all the damage, you can see, was pretty intense,” said Doug Sweeney, president of Sweeney Dealerships.

The high winds ripped apart the sign out front. The roof was caved in on Sweeney Buick while the roof was blown off next to Ethan Allen.

Despite the damage, both businesses were open for business on Monday.

Boardman’s fire chief said the early assessment is that the damage was caused by straight-line winds — in a manner that would be consistent with a microburst. The National Weather Service’s investigator also believes that the amount of damage to the car dealership indicates winds during the storm reached between 95 and 100 miles an hour.

The National Weather Service said a report may be released later as new details become available.

In Columbiana County, the National Weather Service confirmed that an EF1 tornado touched down in Calcutta. 

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