On Thursday, National Weather Service meteorologists conducted a survey of tornado damage in northern Bartow and central/eastern Gordon Counties to the northwest of Atlanta.
Their preliminary report rates the tornado that struck Adairsville on Wednesday as a high-end EF3. The Enhanced Fujita (EF) Scale rates tornadoes from 0 to 5; with 0 being the weakest, and 5 being the strongest.
They estimate maximum winds at 160 mph and a maximum damage path width at 900 yards (about a half mile). The tornado was on the ground for about 30 minutes. Its path was 21.8 miles long.
The tornado touched down at approximately 11:12 am Wednesday in northwestern Bartow County. It damaged at least 95 structures in and around Adairsville. 31 of those buildings were destroyed, including the Daiki steel manufacturing plant. The majority of the damage around the city was the result of falling trees. One man died when a tree fell into his mobile home. Nine others were injured by the tornado in Bartow County.
It also caused substantial damage in neighboring Gordon County. Nearly 270 structures sustained some type of damage there; 30 of those buildings were destroyed. 110 others were severely damaged. Eight people were injured in Gordon County.
The tornado lifted near the Gordon/Oakman County line, or about 14 miles northeast of Calhoun, at approximately 11:43 am.
EF Scale (for reference)