Palm Beach Tornado: Wind flips cars and damages homes in coastal Florida city

·2-min read

A powerful tornado overturned cars, damaged homes and snapped tree branches in Florida as an intense storm system brought rain and strong winds to the US state over the weekend.

The tornado hit late on Saturday afternoon with winds of 100mph near Palm Beach Gardens Medical Centre, in Palm Beach, and headed northeast towards the coast, according to the National Weather Service.

Authorities in the coastal city were forced to close major roads as workers cleared debris and inspected wreckage due to the storm damage.

Pictures from the scene show cars flipped over on top of each other, cracked tree limbs resting on vehicles and homes, as well as other debris littering streets.

The Palm Beach Gardens Police Department did not report any major injuries or deaths.

Officials have deactivated emergency protocols and worked through lingering issues on Sunday, a spokeswoman for the city said.

The National Weather Service placed a large area of central Florida under a tornado watch on Saturday afternoon as thunderstorms were cutting across the state.

Elsewhere in the US, a state of emergency was declared in the city of Virginia Beach on Sunday after a tornado swept through the area and damaged dozens of homes, downed trees and caused gas leaks.

Read more from US news:
Celebs pack out White House Correspondents' dinner
Back To The Future star Michael J Fox: 'I'm not going to be 80'

It was unclear how many homes had been damaged, but city officials estimated between 50 and 100 after the storm touched down at around 6pm on Sunday.

City manager Patrick Duhaney declared a state of emergency on Sunday night, though there were no immediate reports of injuries.

Virginia Natural Gas responded to several homes with gas leaks, while Dominion Energy reported just under 1,000 outages early on Monday.