3 tornadoes confirmed in Southeast Michigan during Saturday night storms: What we know

4th tornado also confirmed in Port Austin

Tornado damage July 25, 2021 in Armada, Mich.
Tornado damage July 25, 2021 in Armada, Mich. (nummerge/WDIV Pins)

At least three tornadoes touched down in Southeast Michigan on Saturday night, causing serious damage damage and triggering multiple tornado warnings.

Severe storms rolled through the area on Saturday evening (July 24), knocking out power to more than 120,000 homes, mostly in Oakland and Macomb counties. Tornado warnings were issued for both counties, and the National Weather Service said on Sunday that tornadoes did touch down.

Here’s what we know about the confirmed twisters:

Armada (Macomb County)

The National Weather Service reported Sunday that spotters confirmed an EF-1 tornado touched down across Northern Macomb County, near the city of Armada. NWS said the damage observed was consistent with 105 mph peak winds.

The last tornado confirmed in Macomb County was an EF-0 twister near Ray Township in 2014.

NWS said the tornado touched down near 34 Mile and Armada Ridge Road. Severe large trees were uprooted and a handful of homes sustained severe damage.

“It happened so fast and it was over and all the damage happened in 10 minutes. The pictures were one thing, but actually being here and seeing the street littered with debris and everything that happened and came along with that. The downed trees, it was awful,” Armada resident Justin Sebra said.

The city of Armada has declared a State of Emergency following the damage from the EF-1 tornado.

The National Weather Service confirmed that two separate tornadoes passed through Armada in Macomb County and White Lake in Oakland County.
The National Weather Service confirmed that two separate tornadoes passed through Armada in Macomb County and White Lake in Oakland County.

White Lake (Oakland County)

NWS confirmed another EF-1 tornado touched down in White Lake on Saturday night, near the intersection of Teggerdine Road and Pontiac Lake Road.

The last tornado to impact Oakland County was an EF-1 in Rochester Hills back in 2014.

Like in Armada, several trees were uprooted or snapped but not as much property damage was sustained in White Lake. One person sustained minor injuries.

More: Residents deal with aftermath of tornadoes in Armada, White Lake

Clay Township (Genesee County)

Another EF-1 tornado was confirmed over Clayton Township, with damage consistent with 100 mph peak winds. The last tornado event in Genesee County was in 2019.

NWS said the path extended from just northeast of Calkins and North McKinley Road, just west of Elms Road, between Corunna and Calkins Road. Three garages along Calkins Road and Morrish Road were severely damaged.

Minor structural damage to nearby homes, including the loss of roofing and siding, was reported, along with tree and crop damage.

Port Austin

A confirmed waterspout touched down in Port Austin on Saturday around 4:30 p.m. It was reportedly moving at 45 miles per hour. Weather Spotters confirmed it was moving onshore.

The National Weather Service said it had the potential to damage homes and vehicles.

Tornadic waterspouts are tornadoes that form over water, or move from land to water. They have the same characteristics as a land tornado. They are associated with severe thunderstorms, and are often accompanied by high winds and seas, large hail, and frequent dangerous lightning.

UPDATE: NWS confirmed this as a EF-0 tornado.

Waterspout spotted off Port Austin.
Waterspout spotted off Port Austin.

About the Author:

Ken Haddad is the digital special projects manager for WDIV / ClickOnDetroit.com. He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters. He's been with WDIV since 2013.