5 Injured After Car Dealership Collapses as Tornadoes Batter Pennsylvania, New Jersey

At least five people have been injured after a car dealership partially collapsed when the second of two tornadoes touched down not far from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The first tornado, which the National Weather Service (NWS) said was "dangerous" and "life threatening," touched down in Bucks County on Thursday evening. Another dangerous tornado touched down in the same area about 10 minutes afterwards.

The second tornado severely damaged the Faulkner Buick GMC Dealership near Trevose, causing five injuries and destroying the building, Bensalem Police Public Safety Director Fred Harran told the Bucks County Courier Times.

Newsweek reached out to Harran for additional information and comment.

The Trevose Fire Company tweeted photos of the partially collapsed dealership a short time after the tornado had passed, while urging locals to avoid the area. All of the employees of the dealership have been accounted for, according to CBS affiliate KYW.

Please avoid the area by Faulkner Trevose. Our thoughts are with those affected. pic.twitter.com/fFfOi0trRU

— Trevose Fire Company (@TFC484) July 30, 2021

Bill Rollin, director of emergency alerts for Bucks, Montgomery and Delaware Counties, told the outlet that the tornado hit the building's service center the hardest and had resulted in a "mass casualty incident." The term is used to describe incidents that cause between three and 20 injuries.

"Crews from across Bensalem Township are currently on scene," Rollin told the outlet. "The full amount of injuries is unknown at this time."

Storm Tornado Pennsylvania Car Dealership Collapse Jersey
Five people in Pennsylvania were reportedly injured after a car dealership partially collapsed amid heavy storms that includes tornadoes on Thursday. This undated file photo shows ominous storm clouds pouring down rain on an unspecified location. Mumemories/Getty

None of the injuries were believed to be life-threatening. Emergency workers were reportedly using Neshaminy Mall in Bensalem as an evacuation center in the aftermath of the storm. Video taken during the storm showed debris swirling through the air near the mall.

Witness my first, and hopefully last, tornado today 🌪 pic.twitter.com/znGjksyQLn

— Jeanamarie Banta, PT, DPT (@JeanaBanta) July 29, 2021

The tornado also caused extensive damage at nearby Penn Valley Terrace mobile home park, although no injuries were reported. Residents told the Bucks County Courier Times that, in addition to damage to some of the park's trailers, they found what they believed to be parts of the roof that the tornado tore off the dealership building.

"I heard rumbling and it was getting closer and closer," resident Cindy Cartin told the outlet. "I felt it. I knew it... It was here."

"I thought I was going to be Dorothy," she added, referencing The Wizard of Oz as she began to cry.

At least one of the two tornadoes that struck Pennsylvania also moved across the border into New Jersey, causing damage in that state as well. Multiple tornado warnings were issued during the night in both states.

There may have been as many as three or four tornadoes in the area, although the NWS has not yet confirmed how many tornadoes touched down. There was no doubt about the heavy rainfall that battered the region, which was up to three inches in some areas and prompted the NWS to issue flash flood warnings.