'It was unreal’: City officials believe tornado was on the ground in Kannapolis

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. — City officials believe a tornado touched down in Kannapolis Thursday when lines of severe storms roared through the Carolinas.

The twister reportedly hit near Lane Street and the Interstate 85 Exit.

A 16-year-old boy was home alone when the storm moved through. He told Channel 9 he saw a wall of rain moving toward him, so he took cover.

“I knew a tornado had touched down, and I saw my cat, tackled him, and we went running and hid in the closet,” the teen said. “And then I just heard glass shattering everywhere.”

He said it sounded like being on an airplane with no windows.

“It was unreal,” he said.

The rotating cell moved from the Gastonia area all the way to Kannapolis.

Some people reported damage and others reported seeing a funnel cloud reform and touch the ground.

The National Weather Service was dispatched to the area Friday morning to determine whether the damage was caused by a tornado.

>> Channel 9 crews will be with NWS teams as they tour the area Friday and will have LIVE updates on Eyewitness News.

The NWS will be looking for the damage to be pointing in different directions, meaning the strong winds were rotating instead of perhaps just being straight-line winds that come from a thunderstorm.

Another area the looked at is near Pineville and Matthews, where the NWS confirmed that an EF-1 tornado touched down at 12:18 p.m. along Nations Ford Road on the state line in Pineville.

According to officials, most of the damage was to trees and structural damage on Industrial Drive west of Interstate 485.

There were no reports of injuries from the areas that possibly saw tornadoes.