Baldwin County’s coastline got pounded with wind, rain, and damaging hail Saturday morning, April 10, 2021. The brunt of the storms came in the overnight hours while folks were asleep. Many visitors woke to the relentless pounding of giant hailstones outside their condos.
Baseball-sized hail came down, causing tremendous damage to vehicles throughout Orange Beach. Most didn’t realize how bad it was until daylight came. Daylight brought with it more severe weather warnings and blinding sheets of rain along Baldwin County beaches. Gale force winds made for hazardous driving but there was some relief in the fact that with the light, folks would soon be able to see what damage earlier storms left behind. But, most would not like what they would find.
Incredible video shot by Fox 10 News viewers showed the scene from several hours earlier. Orange Beach and the surrounding area was under assault by a bombardment of hail coming from massive thunderstorm which formed ahead of the mail frontal line.
The pounding was short-lived but long enough to do significant damage. Some of the stones, larger than baseballs smashed through windshields and sunroofs, opening cars up for water to come in and add salt to the wound. Even those used to severe weather the Midwest is known for were shocked at what Mother Nature had thrown at them.
“It was so loud, and it was baseball-sized. It was huge and there was so much of it,” said Theresa Wakefield.
“We have a lot of severe storms in Indiana, but I have not seen hail this size before. It was remarkable,” added Dave Mennell from Indiana. “It had to be remarkable to do this much damage. It’s the loudest I’ve ever heard hail hit a building in my life.”
“I’ve never seen hail so big in my life. It was bigger than a baseball. Not quite a softball but it was the whole palm of my hand,” said Brian Vanoeffelen from Michigan.
So many in Orange Beach were hundreds of miles from home and left looking for what their next step should be.
“Very frustrated,” Janet Wakefield said. “At least no one got hurt, but we can’t get the glass and we can’t get ahold of anyone.”
With the damage done, folks were left to deal with the aftermath, all looking for rental cars, windshield repair and needing to get somewhere.