Jacksonville Dodges Severe Weather Overnight, Tornado Spotted Near Tallula

By Benjamin Cox on December 11, 2021 at 8:42am

The greater Jacksonville area mostly dodged severe weather last night. No major storm damage was reported around Jacksonville last night as storms moved east both to the north and south, causing major problems elsewhere.

The Menard County Sheriff’s Office announced around 8:02 last night a confirmed tornado on the ground near Tallula. They also confirmed several downed power lines, power poles, and trees in the Sandridge area north of Petersburg. Some residents in Sandridge and rural Greenview are without power this morning according to Menard Rural Electric’s outage map. Several roads remain closed in that area this morning. The National Weather Service has yet to confirm that tornado touch down.

The New Berlin-Athens high school boys basketball game was postponed in the third quarter last night due to a power outage at the Athens High School gymnasium.

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office also confirmed several downed power lines, power poles, and trees in the eastern portion of Cass County last night. Portions of Parlier Road remain closed this morning because of trees across the road. A few homes in rural Virginia remain without power this morning, according to Ameren’s outage map.

The most devastation came from outside the listening area last night with the collapse of portions of an Amazon Warehouse in Edwardsville that killed at least 2 people, according to multiple reports. According to a release from the Edwardsville Police, between 50-100 people were trapped inside the building when the building fell in due to severe winds around 8:33PM. The National Weather Service had confirmed tornado-like rotation on radar in the Edwardsville-Pontoon Beach area at the time of the collapse.

The following agencies are on scene and assisting: St. Clair County, St. Louis City, St. Louis County, Madison County Emergency Management, Madison County Sheriff’s Department, Pontoon Beach Police Department, Mitchell Fire Department, Alton Fire Department, Hamel Fire Department, Madison Fire Department, Glen Carbon Fire Department and numerous other police, fire, and EMS agencies. Additionally, several heavy equipment operators are assisting.

As of 5:45 this morning, the mass casualty event is still being labeled as a search and rescue mission for several Madison County Police and Fire Departments. Portions of Interstate 270 were closed overnight to aid in local emergency efforts. I-270 has since reopened, but there is no access on Gateway Commerce Drive from Illinois Route 111 to Illinois 255. People are asked to avoid the area at this time as efforts continue.

Another press conference by Edwardsville Police will be held late this afternoon at the Edwardsville Public Safety Building updating the public on the situation.