National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Parkersburg (Wood County) EF-0 Tornado
December 23, 2015

Estimated Maximum Wind:
70 mph
0 Injuries / 0 fatalities
Damage Path Length:
317 yards
Maximum Path Width:
25 yards 
Approximate Start Point/Time:
39.2474/-81.5966 at 11:25 pm
Approximate End Point/Time:
39.2474/-81.5933 at 11:26 pm


The weather was anything but seasonal during the afternoon and evening of December 23rd, 2015. Temperatures were in the 60s, while dew points were in the 50s. A squall line raced up the Ohio River Valley, well out ahead of the surface cold front. The fast moving showers and thunderstorms reached into the mid Ohio Valley around Parkersburg just before midnight. Wind gusts around 45 mph were common. However, a brief EF0 tornado was declared in Wood County.

The National Weather Service conducted a survey of damage that occured along South Sixth Street in Parkersburg, West Virginia. A few buildings lost portions of their roofs while the roof was completely removed from an old cement block building. The walls of this building also collapsed. Other damage included several trees blown downand a few larger limbs down as well. A small camper was also destroyed. Most of the trees that were knocked down had rotten trunks. Twelve local residents had to be housed in local motels. The National Weather Service surevey team estimated the strongest wind gusts around 70 mph.


Damage Survey Maps



Each triangle corresponds to damage seen to the south of Dupont Road in Parkersburg. The majority of the damage occured along 6th street. Click to enlarge. A wider image of the location of the damage in relation to Parkersburg is seen in the image above. Click to enlarge.


Radar Data  

This is an image of the 0.5 degree reflectivity and velocity data from KRLX at 11:23 pm. The red dot marks the location of damage from the surveyed tornado. Click to enlarge. Wider image of the 0.5 degree reflectivity and velocity data from KRLX at 11:23 pm. The surveyed tornado was embedded in a squall line that moved through the Ohio Valley. Click to enlarge.


Storm Damage Images 

Collapsed walls of building on 6th street. Click to enlarge.

Scattered roofing pieces along 6th street. Click to enlarge.


Roof damage to small housing unit. Click to enlarge.

Part of roof from building on Helen Ave and 6th St.




Official NWS Damage Survey Information Statement: