Meteorologist: Microburst, Not Tornado Caused Damage in York

Jul 16, 2014

The National Weather Service says that it was a microburst, not a tornado, that caused some significant damage in and around the town of York in far southwestern Maine early yesterday evening.

Meteorologist John Cannon of the National Weather Service office in Gray says a survey team determined that the microburst occurred at about 5:15 yesterday afternoon, with estimated maximum winds of from 70 to 80 miles per hour.

Cannon says in a microburst, winds fan out near the surface in a straight line rather than rotating, as they do in a tornado.

"A microburst is usually defined by the size of the area that it affects," Cannon says. "As far as time goes, it can be just a few seconds to several minutes that you could have intense winds with a microburst."

Cannon says a survey will be done tomorrow in Somerset County near Madison and points east. He says a tornado is suspected to have occurred there but that hasn't yet been confirmed.