Cleanup continues in Delaware after record-breaking tornado

MIDDLETOWN, Delaware (WPVI) -- A massive cleanup is underway in Delaware after a record-breaking tornado hit Tuesday during Tropical Storm Isaias.

The tornado had a track of 29.2 miles through Kent County and north to Middletown in New Castle County and lasted for half an hour.

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The National Weather Service says a tornado that touched down in Delaware during Tuesday's storms was a record-breaker.

It's the longest track for a tornado in Delaware since the National Weather Service began tracking in the 1950s, the previous record was a 13-mile tornado in 1988.

In Middletown, the twister ripped off roofs and uprooted trees on South Ingram Court. One neighbor lost the entire side of his house, which is now condemned.

In Bear, residents along Cypress Way and Amberwood Drive sheltered in their basements while the tornado tore up their houses. One woman says it is costing her more than $12,000 just to remove the trees from her backyard.

"Just trying to get them to safety was my number one and then we didn't know what was going on until we came outside," said Jessica Walker.

On Friday, officials spent the day surveying damage across New Castle County. County Executive Matt Meyer said the storm was particularly devastating considering the hard financial times brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.

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Wind gusts up to 70 miles an hour snapped dozens of trees, scattered siding and shingles throughout the street and left some homeowners without a roof over their heads Tuesday.

"We tell you to stay home and half of your home is ripped off or your roof is ripped off, but we're going to stick together as a community, we're making sure everyone is taken care of," he said.

In Smyrna, the owners of Cedar Lane Farm, which houses thoroughbred racehorses say the damage will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to rebuild and the family is asking for help with supplies.

"It's devastating. It's devastating. This is my family's whole livelihood," said Lisa Cordrey, the owners' daughter.

The tornado was 200 yards wide and had wind speeds of 105mph.
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