Storms Spawn Tornadoes, Cause Damage In Northeast Iowa [PHOTOS]
Finally, eastern Iowa got some much-needed rain. What the region didn't need, though, was the severe weather that came with the precipitation.
A storm system that moved across the state Wednesday night spawned multiple tornadoes and produced downpours that resulted in flash flooding. The National Weather Service (NWS) received more than 50 reports of tornadoes and funnel clouds in central and eastern Iowa. Trained spotters confirmed at least a dozen tornadoes, including one that touched down near Shell Rock and moved east toward Waverly and Readlyn [to see video, CLICK HERE].
According to an NWS report, at least two houses and a grain bin were damaged in a rural area south of Shell Rock. The tornado also demolished a rural home southeast of Waverly. There were no reports of injuries.
In Oelwein, school officials reported a tornado hit the ground near the high school and damaged the football stadium. A concession stand was demolished and a ticket booth was damaged, along with a fence and signage. There was no apparent structural damage to the school building.
The storm knocked down trees and utility lines around the Cedar Valley, leaving more than 2,700 Mid-American Energy customers without power in Waterloo and Evansdale. Company officials reported at least 1,600 outages in Waterloo and just over 1,100 in Evansdale.
Waterloo police asked people to avoid unnecessary travel around the city Wednesday night. Authorities reported that many trees and power lines were down, some of which blocked streets and sidewalks in the city.
NWS officials said a brief tornado was reported near the John Deere Foundry on Westfield Ave. in Waterloo. The apparent twister caused some minor damage on both sides of U.S. Highway 218.
Just before 8 PM, spotters reported a tornado on the ground southwest of Manchester and another that touched down north of the city. According to authorities, a sale barn and convenience store were among the buildings damaged. Officials said more than 1,500 people attending the Delaware County Fair were evacuated from the fairgrounds in Manchester.
Structural damage was also reported to homes and buildings in Dysart after the storm moved through Tama County.
In all, more the 30 tornado warnings were issued across Iowa Wednesday. Late afternoon tornado touchdowns were first reported in north-central Iowa to the east of Interstate 35 and along the U.S. Highway 20 corridor.
Source: National Weather Service