70 Tornadoes Rip Through Upper Midwest

Find out how you can help the victims

The National Weather Service issued widespread tornado watches and warnings across the upper Midwest on Sunday. The warnings included 9 states — Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and Wisconsin. Tornadoes are a fairly unusual occurrence this time of year for this region.

Shows affected states - Credit: NOAA

Shows affected states – Credit: NOAA

Residents in Washington, Ill., search through neighborhoods following Sunday's tornado. (Ron Johnson, AP)

Residents in Washington, Ill., search through neighborhoods following Sunday’s tornado. (Ron Johnson, AP)

These events are capable of having large, strong tornadoes, too. Some very significant tornado events have occurred in November, but more often they are in states like Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee or Texas,” says WeatherBug Chief Meteorologist Mark Hoekzema.

Credit: Lauri Väin via Flickr

Credit: Lauri Väin via Flickr

Fast Facts:

  • 70 reports of tornadoes
  • Many of the storms produced wind gusts in excess of 50 mph
  • 6 reported deaths as of Monday with dozens more injured
  • Multiple homes have been destroyed
Demolished homes and vehicles in the Devonshire Subdivision in Washington, Ill., Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013. (Steve Smedley, AP)

Demolished homes and vehicles in the Devonshire Subdivision in Washington, Ill., Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013. (Steve Smedley, AP)

An elderly woman is escorted through tornado debris in Brookport, Ill. (Lance Dennee, AP)

An elderly woman is escorted through tornado debris in Brookport, Ill. (Lance Dennee, AP)

WeatherBug Meteorologist and Field Tech Ben Michalak was walking out of his front door when he spotted a check on the ground in his front yard. The check originated in Dixon, Illinois – a whopping 130 miles away from Ben’s house in Scherville, Illinois!

Credit: WeatherBug Meteorologist and Field Tech Ben Michalak

Credit: WeatherBug Meteorologist and Field Tech Ben Michalak

The WeatherBug camera in Marion, Illinois at the Black Diamond Harley Davidson Dealership caught this footage as storms approached on Sunday November 17:

Credit: WeatherBug Live Cam network

Credit: WeatherBug Live Cam network

The storm also generated a tremendous amount of lightning:

Credit: WeatherBug-Earth Networks Total Lightning Network

Credit: WeatherBug-Earth Networks Total Lightning Network

Radar showed thunderstorms exiting Illinois midday Sunday. The storms sustained themselves over long distances, evident by the lengthy lightning cell tracks (noted by the lines on the image below). Notice the abundance of storm reports in the wake of the storms (these are the blue squares and orange circles) and how well they line up with the lightning cell tracks.Blue squares indicate wind damage reports, circles are hail reports and the upside down triangle show tornado reports.

Credit: WeatherBug-Earth Networks Total Lightning Network

Credit: WeatherBug-Earth Networks Total Lightning Network

Peak wind gusts in the storms and wind directions are tracked by our exclusive WeatherBug stations and at local airports across the Midwest. To view photos of these storms, visit WeatherBug’s new Photos site!

A man stands near tornado damage Sunday in Washington, Ill. (David Mercer, AP)

A man stands near tornado damage Sunday in Washington, Ill. (David Mercer, AP)

Allen Rawlins picks through the debris of his parents’ home, which was destroyed by a tornado in Kokomo, Ind. (AJ Mast, AP)

Allen Rawlins picks through the debris of his parents’ home, which was destroyed by a tornado in Kokomo, Ind. (AJ Mast, AP)

According to the National Weather Service, tornadoes can cause an average of 60-65 fatalities and 1,500 injuries each year. When destructive storms such as these strike, minutes matter. In order to give the maximum warning possible, technology matters. WeatherBug – Earth Networks is a big weather data company given that we operate the world’s largest weather and sensor networks which produces unparalleled real-time weather data. This in turn allows us to give our users and partners the best data and the fastest warning to severe weather. We are proud to be a longstanding partner of NOAA’s Weather Ready Nation initiative.

Credit: NOAA

Credit: NOAA

The Weather Channel and AccuWeather users received an average of 14 minutes of warning, while WeatherBug users received 32 minutes of warning — that’s 129% more warning time. Download WeatherBug and Know Before™. Safeguard yourself today:

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Our thoughts are with the families who have lost loved ones.

Stay Safe. Know Before™.

-The WeatherBug Team 

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This entry was posted in Heavy Rain, Heavy Winds, Safety, Storm, Tornadoes.
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