Tornado or not tornado: That was the question today after the National Weather Service issued a tornado watch for much of Eastern Massachusetts about 1:45 p.m. But in the end, said meteorologist Eleanor Vallier-Talbot, the twisters never came.
A severe weather warning coinciding with the tornado watch also expired shortly before 9 p.m. and tornadoes are unlikely to touch down in Massachusetts “at least through tonight," Vallier-Talbot said from the National Weather Service in Taunton.
Meteorologists will keep a close eye on the skies tomorrow, she said, when tornado conditions – including strong winds in the mid and upper levels of the atmosphere – could again be favorable.
Despite the tornadoes’ no-show, many areas were ravaged by large hail and damaging winds that took down trees and power lines, Vallier-Talbot said.
Andover, North Andover, Andover, North Andover, Boxford, Georgetown, Hopkinton and Holliston took the brunt of the damage this afternoon, she said.
Temperatures are expected to hover Sunday in the low 70s, with Sunday's highs expected to be in the low 70s, meteorologist Kim Buttrick said.
Forecasters also have warned of more window-rattling severe thunderstorms storms like those that have shaken southern New England all week.
Thunderstorms that downed trees and power lines Friday night were to blame for a three-alarm house fire in Milton that sent three firefighters to the hospital, authorities said.
The home, located at 16 Augusta Road, sustained significant damage to its third floor after lightning apparently struck the home some time before 4 a.m., said Deputy Fire Chief Kevin Mahony.
One firefighter tore the rotator cuff in his shoulder, while two others suffered heat exhaustion, Mahony said. All three were treated at Milton Hospital and released, he said. The home sustained about $150,000 in damages, Mahony said.
In Danvers, a tree felled by another apparent lightning strike struck power lines and the roof of a small apartment building, the fire department said. About 10 people were forced to leave their homes when the power to the building was interrupted by the fall.
Globe correspondent Matt Byrne contributed to this report.
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