NWS: EF2 tornado hit Saluda, Newberry Counties with wind gusts u - FOX Carolina 21

NWS: EF2 tornado hit Saluda, Newberry Counties with wind gusts up to 115 mph

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Downed tree in Newberry County (May 24, 2017/FOX Carolina) Downed tree in Newberry County (May 24, 2017/FOX Carolina)
Prosperity damage (FOX Carolina) Prosperity damage (FOX Carolina)
Prosperity damage (FOX Carolina) Prosperity damage (FOX Carolina)

The National Weather Service confirmed Thursday that a tornado touched down in Newberry County Wednesday afternoon.

Meteorologists said an EF 2 tornado hit northern parts of Saluda and Newberry Counties.

The Prosperity area saw the most damage. Witnesses reported that a tornado came through the area.

Rebecca Ammons was home when the storm hit. It ripped off her roof and caused damage to her family's property.

"I honestly thought for sure we were going to die," explained Ammons. "Or that the fire department was going to have to pull us out."

PHOTOS: Possible tornado damage in Newberry County

Sheriff Foster said the storm caused damage to about 5 miles of Newberry County.

"It's an area that is prone to tornadoes," Foster said

On Thursday, the National Weather Service released new details in confirming that a tornado had touched down in the Upstate on Wednesday.

According to NWS, the EF2 tornado produced winds up to 115 mph, spanning 12 miles in path length and 250 yards in width. NWS officials said it started at 3:04 p.m. about 10 miles northeast of Saluda near Denny Highway and the Saluda River, and concluded at 3:20 p.m., about 3 miles east of Prosperity.

The NWS said the tornado produced EF-0 and EF-1 damage along most of its path, however a small area of EF-2 wind damage with winds up to 115 mph was reported near Stoney Hill Road and Fire Tower Road as well as Macedonia Church Road and Cy Schumpert Road.

Numerous trees were either snapped or uprooted along the tornado's path of damage, several on homes and vehicles, per NWS. They also said several masonry outbuildings had their walls blown out at the storm's strongest points, and that small outbuildings were moved as much as 20 yards. A few large hardwood trees were splintered with the tops thrown as far as 30 yards.

Foster issued a warning to residents on Thursday, advising that anyone seeking information about damaged properties should have identification and will likely be in uniform.

Foster said residents should request proper identification before providing any information or allowing the person onto properties or inside homes.

While there have been no reports of scams after this storm, Foster said scam artists "will sometimes use such tragedy to gain access to personal information and to residences so that they can steal items from the property."

Sheriff Foster also encouraged residents to thoroughly vet any company being considered for clean up or repairs before hiring them. He also also advised to never pay in advance for the work. 

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