Storm sys­tem that killed 3 in Mid­west rum­bles east­ward

Ap­par­ent tor­na­does dam­age homes and up­root trees.

Austin American-Statesman - - MORE OF TODAY’S TOP NEWS - By Jim Sal­ter

A spring­like storm sys­tem spawned tor­na­does that de­stroyed more than 100 homes and killed three peo­ple in the cen­tral U.S. be­fore it rum­bled east- ward Wed­nes­day, putting about 95 mil­lion peo­ple in its path, fore­cast­ers said.

The com­pact but strong storms, known as su­per­cells, moved into the re­gion on Tues­day and raked parts of Ar­kan­sas, Iowa, In­di­ana, Illi­nois, Michi­gan and Mis­souri be­fore mov­ing into Ohio, Ken­tucky, Ten­nessee and West Vir­ginia.

Fore­cast­ers with the Storm Pre­dic­tion Cen­ter said the storm sys­tem ap­peared headed to­ward the mid-At- lan­tic states and south­ern New Eng­land, and that New York, Philadel­phia, Balti- more, At­lanta and Wash­ing- ton, D.C., could be af­fected.

The Na­tional Weather Ser- vice Storm Pre­dic­tion Cen- ter in Nor­man, Ok­la­homa, re­ceived about two dozen re­ports of pos­si­ble tor­na­does late Tues­day and early Wed­nes­day. Warn­ing coor- di­na­tion me­te­o­rol­o­gist Pa­trick Marsh said crews are still de­ter­min­ing if dam­age was from tor­na­does or straight­line winds, and how many twisters touched down.

Marsh said a strong storm sys­tem moved from the Moun­tain West and col­lided with warm and hu­mid air in the cen­tral U.S., which has en­joyed an un­usu­ally warm win­ter and where tem­per­a­tures Tues­day were well into the 70s in many places.

“That’s why we saw storms more rep­re­sen­ta­tive of late March and April,” Marsh said. “The at­mos­phere doesn’t care what the cal­en­dar says.”

In Illi­nois, an up­rooted tree kil l ed 76-year-old man, Wayne Tunt­land, in Ot­tawa, which is 70 miles south­west of Chicago. More than a dozen peo­ple in the area were in­jured dur­ing the storm. In the small com- mu­nity of Naplate, next to Ot­tawa, about a quar­ter of the roughly 200 homes were dam­aged, Fire Chief John Nevins said. Gov. Bruce Rauner toured the area Wed­nes­day.

Deb­bie Loughridge, 61, of Naplate rode out the storm with her son in the bath­tub of their rented house. Fire­fight­ers helped them out of the home, which lost much of its roof.

“He heard the freight train sound and said ‘Here it comes,’” Loughridge said. “All I heard was the wind and the break­ing glass. Like an ex­plo­sion of glass.”

About 225 miles south of Ot­tawa, near Crossville, Illi­nois, an ap­par­ent tor­nado struck a build­ing near a house, killing a 71-year-old man and in­jur­ing his wife, White County Coroner Chris Marsh said.

In Mis­souri, sev­eral ve­hi­cles were blown off of In­ter­state 55 near Per­ryville, 65 miles southeast of St. Louis. A 24-year-old man from Per­ryville was ejected and died, Mis­souri State High­way Pa­trol Cpl. Jus­ton Wheet­ley said. The wind was so strong that it lifted crum­pled cars from a nearby sal­vage yard and tossed them along the high­way.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.