Tornado slams into Palmetto

jtate@bradenton.comJuly 9, 2013 

— Five mobile homes in Tropic Isles RV Park were heavily damaged by a tornado that touched down around 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in Palmetto.

Residents John and Nancy Kadlick were watching television when the storm rambled through their home on the 2800 block of 28th Avenue West and Edessa Drive in Palmetto.

“I saw it swirling around (while I was) in the house,” said Nancy Kadlick, who said she dreamt two nights before about a tornado touching down in the neighborhood.

The damage to the Kadlicks' home in the 55-plus community was so severe it caused the couple and two of their next-door neighbors to find another place to stay.

The Kadlicks' home sustained heavy damage to the roof and a side wall.

“It had a little crackling sound, then I looked up, and the roof was gone,” said John Kadlick. He said the storm lasted about 30 seconds. Other homes sustained roof and wall damages on the west side.

One person had slight injuries but refused treatment because they were so minor, said Scott Tyler, Palmetto Police public information officer. Tyler said the entire community was without electricity Tuesday after a power line was knocked down by the tornado. The Red Cross was on scene Tuesday evening assisting residents.

“I don’t know how long it will be before the power is restored,” said Tyler. “I know they are working quickly to fix it.”

Many residents said they were shocked to see the funnel cloud form on a clear day. Cathy Dobson said she was on her screened lanai talking on the phone with her boyfriend as the funnel cloud formed. She said it was one of the most frightening things she ever witnessed.

“When I looked up all this metal was coming at me. I ran into the bathroom. I was scared to death.” said Dobson, who was grateful her home escaped damage.

Large pieces of aluminum littered the streets as neighbors came out to access the damage and compare accounts.

Shelia Schilling was among the dozens of residents outside at the time of the tornado and captured the act of God on her iPhone. “It came down and started forming,” said Schilling, who went to her neighbors’ home to warn her.

Resident Hugh Ann Cason-Kelly said the tornado did not make a roaring sound because it never touched the ground. She said she saw it bounce from one home to the next tearing metal as it touched.

“It wasn’t a roar that you hear because it never got permanently on the ground, but the pressure changed and the animals started acting up,” Cason-Kelly. “You didn’t know where it was going next.”

Janey Tate, city of Bradenton and Palmetto reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7041. You can follow her on Twitter at Janey_Tate.

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