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Tornado Hits St. Pete Motel

The National Weather Service office in Ruskin confirms that a tornado hit St. Petersburg Saturday evening, causing damage to a local motel and some nearby vehicles, but not injuring anyone.

According to the National Weather Service, what was likely an EF0-ranked tornado (wind gusts between 65 and 85 miles per hour) hit the Rand Motel at 4800 34th Street North in St. Pete around 9 p.m. Saturday night. 

 

10News reports portions of the motel sign were blown out and debris was thrown onto some of the vehicles in the parking lot. In addition, the roof was blown off of the front office and live-in apartment where Rosie Blidar and her husband, the co-owners of the motel, live. 

Rosie says, "Suddenly, I head this terrible noise which I never heard before. I can't describe it. I have no comparison. My first thought was that someone ran into the building. When I came outside, I saw the sky dark. I said 'My God what's going on?' So it was a very bad experience."

No injuries were reported from the tornado, which likely lasted no more than 10 minutes.