SPC Stats

Path length: 9.51 miles

Width:  1000 yards

Fatalities:  0

Injuries:  0

Rating:  EF2

County:  Winston, Cullman

A total of 22 tornadoes were confirmed on November 29, 2016.  Over half were in the state of Alabama. This summary looks at a rather large twister with a max width of 1000 yards. It was rated EF2 and moved just under 10 miles from near Arley to Helicon in Winston County and ended 2.41 miles over the Cullman County line.  The NWS survey determined the estimated maximum winds were near 130 mph.  

During the early part of the path, numerous pine trees were snapped and there was minor damge to two homes along County Road 12.  EF2 damage was found along the shores of Smith Lake near Hosanna Highway.  Four homes were “rendered uninhabitable/destroyed.”  The width of 1000 yards occurred as the twister crossed Smith Lake. As it moved along County Road 77/Helicon Road, more tree damage was noted and 10 homes and several sheds/outbuildings were damaged.  A quarter mile stretch of concrete power poles were snapped.

Near Helicon, a fire department training building was destroyed.  Beyond this point and heading into Cullman County, the tornado weakened.  Most of the damage in Cullman County was to trees.  Although, there was significant damage to a barn near County Road 986.

Tornado Path

SPC coordinates:  Start: 34.0699 / -87.2016   End:  34.1604 / -87.0781

Note:  Exact tornado path may not be straight and/or continuous.

Radar and Damage Photos via NWS Birmingham

Velocity (left) and Reflectivity (right) just after it crossed a portion of Smith Lake. Images are from KGWX at 857 pm.
Helicon Volunteer Fire Department training center collapsed.
Destroyed house.
Home damage.
Exterior walls removed at this residence.


Residents of Winston County, Alabama share first hand accounts of the tornado that passed through on November 29, 2016.  From ACES – Fresh from the Field.


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