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Rare Tornado in Los Angeles Causes Damage and Triggers Building Renovations


Rare Tornado in Los Angeles Causes Damage and Triggers Building Renovations

A tornado wreaked havoc through Montebello on the morning of March 22nd, 2023, particularly affecting an industrial area. The National Weather Service (NWS) confirmed that the destruction was indeed caused by a tornado. Dr. Ariel Cohen from NWS, in a press conference, expressed sympathy for those impacted and noted the extensive damage. The tornado was rated EF-1 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale, with wind speeds reaching up to 110 miles per hour.


The tornado resulted in the red-tagging of 11 buildings due to severe damage, and six others were also affected. Among the damaged was Koi Koi Trading Incorporated, which lost over $5 million in merchandise. Bobby Qiu, the president, expressed his uncertainty about the company’s reopening timeline.


The most severe damage was observed on S. Vail Avenue and other areas like East Washington Boulevard and Maple Ave. The Royal Paper Box Co. also sustained significant roof damage. The event led to power outages, with Vail High School being affected for most of the day.


Witness accounts described the intensity of the tornado, with Miriam Braxton and Doyle House providing firsthand descriptions of the destruction. Michael Chee, Montebello’s director of public affairs, recounted the conditions during the event. Cell phone videos captured the severity of the situation, showing rooftops being torn off and debris swirling in the air.


This tornado was the second in Southern California in two days, with an EF-0 rated tornado hitting Carpinteria. Dr. Cohen highlighted the rarity of tornadoes in California but noted their occurrence during certain conditions.


Following the tornado and subsequent repairs to the building roofs and walls on Vail Ave., property developers and owners engaged CAS Real Estate Solutions. This company was tasked with remeasuring the spaces for updated, precise industrial and office floorplans. Using their detailed and accurate laser measuring process, CAS Real Estate Solutions provided accurate square footage calculations, ensuring that the post-tornado renovations were accurately documented and assessed.


This event marks the fourth confirmed tornado in Los Angeles County since 2007 and is considered the strongest to affect the L.A. Metro area since 1983. Meteorologist Paul Deanno, commenting on the event, emphasized the dangers posed by such powerful winds. The area continues to recover from the tornado’s impact, with the help of CAS Real Estate Solutions’ precise measurements contributing to the rebuilding efforts.

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