NWS says a small tornado made a brief touchdown near Saints practice facility

That was a close one: the National Weather Service says a small tornado briefly touched down near the New Orleans Saints’ practice facility on Saturday, which is a series of words you really can’t take lightly no matter carefully they’re worded. It’s very fortunate to no one was injured.

Storm bands rolling in off the Gulf of Mexico hammered the Gulf South on Saturday morning, spawning a few waterspouts — including a tornado the NWS rated at EF-0 with peak winds reaching 70 miles per hour. NWS investigators found that the tornado only lasted two minutes, beginning at 11:11 a.m. CT and dissipating at 11:13 a.m. CT while approaching a maximum width of just 75 yards. Its path traveled less than a fifth of a mile up Minor Street in Kenner, starting just shy of the Mississippi River and collapsing before it reached Kenner Avenue or Airline Drive. The track was just 3.5 miles west of the Ochsner Sports Performance Center

“A combination of radar, images/videos and surveys by emergency management led us to this determination,” the NWS said in a statement.

Again, we’re very fortunate that the weather incident resulted in no injuries or severe damage. But it’s still a near-miss. We’re doubly lucky that the Saints were off on Saturday with players excused for the weekend. They’ll return to the facility on Monday to kick off a week of preparations for Sept. 10’s regular season kickoff game with the Tennessee Titans. Hopefully this is the last of any strong winds we’ll see in New Orleans for a while, but you never know in hurricane season.

Story originally appeared on Saints Wire