Northeastern Greene County saw some major damage from the storm system that swept across Central Illinois on Monday afternoon.
Greene County Chief Deputy Sheriff and Emergency Management Coordinator Cale Hoesman says that the damage was limited to outbuildings in the small village of Wrights, approximately 8 miles northwest from Greenfield: “There were actually two [mahcine] sheds in town there that were totally destroyed.”
Hoesman says he has spoken with the National Weather Service to help them gather information on the storm’s intensity: “Preliminary [reports] have it listed right now as having wind speeds of over 100 to 115 mph, which classifies that as an EF-2 currently. After they get their data and put it all together, we will have more of an answer of exactly what [the intensity] would be.”
Hoesman says overall that the area was really fortunate to not have any further damage: “As of right now, we have not had any reports of injuries, so we’ve been very fortunate in that aspect, and also no homes were majorly destroyed or anything. We had a couple of residents that were without power for a little bit, but that was restored Monday night. We also were very fortunate in that aspect.”
Tornado touchdowns were also reported in eastern Morgan County and southeastern Cass County with the system on Monday afternoon, but no damage has been reported in either of those counties.
According to the National Weather Service Severe Weather Outlook for today, a couple of rounds of thunderstorms are possible during the day today and on into this evening. The threat for severe weather is relatively low, but cloud-to-ground lightning and locally heavy rain is possible. An additional chance of thunderstorms lingers into tomorrow and Friday, with chances of severe weather remaining low. Cooler temperatures and clear skies are expected to begin with the start of the weekend.
UPDATE: The National Weather Service confirmed the EF-2 rating late last night. According to the press release from the St. Louis office: “The EF-2 tornado touched down at 2:36pm, destroying several large barns and outbuildings. The tornado quickly moved to the northeast, producing sporadic damage to trees and two other outbuildings before lifting, 3 miles from where it touched down.” The tornado was 75 yards wide and had a path of approximately 3 miles.