The National Weather Service in Tallahassee still isn’t sure what kind of storm hit Bay County. They are still collecting data to determine if it was a tornado or straight-line winds.

PANAMA CITY — Bay County was ravaged by a storm that destroyed trailers and brought down power lines around 4 p.m. on Thursday.


The National Weather Service in Tallahassee still isn’t sure what kind of storm hit Bay County. They are still collecting data to determine if it was a tornado or straight-line winds.


One of the more notable damaged areas yesterday was on Harrison Avenue and 6th Street. Panama City Police Department had to block and reroute traffic to keep drivers away from all the debris.


Several portables and trailers that were placed to hold construction workers were destroyed. According to city manager of Panama City Mark McQueen, construction workers vacated the trailers 5 to 7 minutes before the Bay Alert was issued.


Caitlin Lawrence, city of Panama City spokeswoman, gave credit to company Door to Door Services for the help they provided.


“Door to Door Services helped clean up the big debris free of charge,” Lawrence said.


According to county officials, multiple areas were damaged due to the storm. Trees and power lines were knocked down, a power pole on Palo Alto Avenue was down and an 800 AMP Power Box from 112 East 3rd Court was thrown in the water.


A traffic light at Clarence Street and Hutchison Boulevard was knocked to the ground due to the storm.


There were reports from the Bay County Emergency Operations Center that a rotation was reported. Bay County Sheriff’s Office reported a water spout by Hathaway Bridge and at SR 79 and Front Beach Road.


Gulf Power responded quickly to the power lines being down. They expected it would take four hours to fix the power lines and get residents’ power back on, but some residents were reporting power was back on within an hour after the storm hit.


Public works right-of-way crews were at Harrison cleaning up the debris as soon as possible. The fire department helped with the power lines that were knocked to the ground.


According to the NWS, the wind gusts were reported to have reached as high as 69 mph by Tyndall Air Force Base. Two miles north of Magnolia Beach, that also had trees and power lines knocked down, saw wind gusts as high as 60 mph.