EF2 Tornado Hits Downtown Atlanta Friday Night

Radar image of the storm with an F2 tornado over Atlanta, Georgia Friday night.

MAR 14 2008 9:30 PM Atlanta, Ga — An EF2 Tornado hit downtown Atlanta — damaging the CNN Center, Centennial Olympic Park, the Omni Hotel, Georgia World Congress Center, the Georgia Dome, Phillips Arena, Fulton Cotton Mill Lofts (pancake collapse damage) and homes and businesses.

No deaths reported, but 15 injuries have been reported.

Video coverage of the Alabama, Mississippi State state game while the tornado struck.

Announcers:  “We’re hearing some rumbling behind us … the building is rocking a bit … the top of the Georgia Dome is actually moving … It definitely sounded like a locomotive … debris in the air.” Some other clueless commentator said the word “earthquake” at one point and continued in a riled up discourse, concluding that the rumbling was thunder.

Video from Southeastern Conference Tournament Friday at Georgia Dome aftermath.

Television coverage of the Southeastern Conference tournament between  Mississippi State and the University of Alabama showed overhead light standards shaking and recorded a strange rustling noise as the tornado hit outside. Players and fans froze in their tracks as they knew something was wrong overhead. Debris can be seen flying through the air.

The extent of the damage throughout downtown Atlanta is being revealed during the daylight of Saturday morning. Roof collapses and fascia damage are evident throughout the area. Many high rise windows are blown out.

Local citizens are reporting there was no tornado watch and the lead time for the tornado warning was 5 to 10 minutes.

Regarding EF2 scale: The enhanced Fujita scale has replaced the original Fujita scale since February 1, 2007.