A 63-minute delay interrupted play at the SEC tournament as a possible tornado damaged the Georgia Dome. Play resumed at 10:43 p.m. eastern with Alabama losing to MSU 69-67.
At 9:40 p.m Eastern a possible tornado damaged the Georgia Dome, Westin Hotel, Omni Hotel and other parts of downtown Atlanta. Some injuries were reported downtown, but none at the Georgia Dome.The AJC reported a bolt fell from girders causing play to be suspended at the SEC tournament during the Alabama-MSU game.
Scott Wise of Tupelo, Miss. said he was sitting in Section 107, Row 1, which are temporary bleachers courtside, when he was almost hit by the bolt.
“A big old bolt just fell out of the top,” Wise said. “It hit right beside my chair. I had no idea what was going on. I looked up and thought the roof was going to come in.”
The Georgia Dome was site of severe weather stopping SEC Tournament play. Debris flying in the air and damage were shown by RAYCOM television during the broadcast of the game. A rotating thunderstorm. According to the NWS, Fulton County was under a tornado warning during the storm. GAME UNDER DELAY. Teams off the court.
SEC tournament coordinator Mark Womack said a tornado or very strong thunderstorm passed through the Georgia Dome area. The building has been inspected, and should be good to go, he said. The floor is being cleared of debris now. Once the servere weather is out of the area, teams will be allowed to warm-up, he said.
Eye witness accounts from Georgia Dome: “The Georgia Dome is shaking. The TV monitors are swaying, the fans are scattering, and the insulation is coming down onto the court. As I said, rain delay. Sorta scary. The teams are back in the locker room, waiting this out,” wrote Ian Rapoport of the Birmingham News.
WAGA reported wind damage to Omni Hotel.
Sports Network story on Bama game:
Sports Network story on delayed Georgia-Kentucky game:
Biloxi Sun Herald Columnist writes about storm: