West York storm damage linked to straight line winds, possible gustnado

A structure collapse closed the 100 block of South Sumner Street between Andrew Street and Hokes Mill Road in West York. (West York Borough Police Department)

WEST YORK, Pa. (WHTM) – The National Weather Service says Tuesday’s storm damage was caused by straight line winds, but there are places where it appears a gustnado may have formed.

A gustnado is a small, whirlwind that can form on the edges of a strong straight line wind. They do not connect with any cloud-base rotation and are not tornadoes.

The Weather Service said a gustnado may have formed near West York High School and on South Sumner Street, where the storm caused the partial collapse of the former Big Ugly Warehouse.

Video of the storm near the high school was posted on social media by West York Football.

Straight line winds can produce more damage than weak tornadoes and can cover a broader area, the Weather Service said.

The winds in York County had an estimated peak wind speed of 80 mph.

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