A rare 100 mph storm left more than 1.1 million Americans in the Midwest without power as it caused widespread destruction with fallen trees, overturned vehicles, property damage and multiple severe weather warnings as it turned towards contested Chicago.
The derecho, a widespread weather system with a long series of high wind storms, landed in the central United States on Monday as it broke through parts of Iowa, Nebraska and Wisconsin for several hours at wind speeds comparable to that of a major hurricane .
The storm likely caused more damage than a normal tornado, said Patrick Marsh, science director for the National Weather Service's Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma.
It's not a real hurricane. It has no eye and its winches come across in a line. But the damage it's likely to spread over such a large area is more like an inland hurricane than a rapidly stronger tornado, Marsh said.
He compared it to a devastating 2009 Super Derecho, which was one of the most powerful of all time, traveling more than 1,000 miles in 24 hours, causing $ 500 million in damage, widespread power outages, and multiple deaths.
A person examines the damage to the roof of College Church in Wheaton, Illinois after a severe storm toppled the steeple on Wheaton College campus Monday
A strong storm known as the Derecho swept through several Midwestern states on Monday, with winds hitting 100 mph and losing power over several regions
Portions of the roof of the Buccaneer Arena are in the parking lot after a heavy thunderstorm with high winds blew through the Des Moines Subway on Monday, August 10, 2020, in Urbandale, Iowa
A group of people are investigating the damage to the Buccaneer Arena from the building's lobby after a severe thunderstorm with high winds blew through the Des Moines
A number of farms in Iowa and Illinois were damaged by the high winds, including one farm in Iowa that lost two grain bins and seven tires (pictured)
More than 1.1 million Americans were without power on Monday as most of the supply shortages were found in Illinois and Iowa
Marsh of the Meteorological Service said there were major concerns about power outages that will be widespread and long-lasting in several states. Add high heat, people with illnesses who need electricity, and the pandemic, "it gets bad pretty quickly."
Iowa streets were littered with rundown power lines when tractor units were blown over and entire agricultural grain elevators were demolished.
Wind speeds in Nebraska exceeded 100 km / h when massive trees crashed into residential buildings.
In Wisconsin, special marine warnings were issued when the potential for gargoyles was discovered in Lake Michigan.
The National Weather Service issued a variety of severe weather warnings to a number of cities throughout Monday.
From 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., the agency posted more than 20 such alerts in at least four states, including Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, Oklahoma, Indiana, and Michigan.
PowerOutage.us reports that more than 1,130,505 Americans will be without power as of 7 p.m. Monday due to the heavy derecho.
Illinois has the highest number of non-electricity customers with 570,756, while Iowa followed just behind with 491,260.
"This is our version of a hurricane," said Victor Mensini, professor of meteorology at Northern Illinois University, in an interview from home about 15 minutes before the storm hit.
Minutes later he was walking down his basement for security reasons when the storm hit Chicago, starting with its suburbs.
Gensini said this derecho will go down as one of the strongest in recent history and will be one of the country's worst weather events in 2020.
"They are basically self-sustaining amoebas from thunderstorms," Gensini said. "Once they get on like they do all of Iowa, it's really hard to stop these fools."
"It went up pretty quickly" around 7:00 a.m. in eastern Nebraska. I don't think anyone expected widespread winds approaching 100, 110 miles an hour, ”Patrick Marsh said.
Pictured; A farm in Collins, Iowa, was badly damaged on Monday and has to replace a number of items after the storm
The Iowa resident added that after visiting the state's Derecho, she would have to bring 800 farm pigs together and find a new home for them
Pictured: Parts of the roof of the Buccaneer Arena lie in the parking lot after a heavy thunderstorm with high winds blows through Des Moines, Iowa
Pictured: Part of a Midwestern home is completely destroyed after a massive tree falls on what appears to be a garage
Fallen trees and other debris blanket front gardens in Cedar Rapids, Iowa after a heavy storm hit Iowa on Monday
Several people were injured and widespread property damage was reported in Marshall County, central Iowa, after 100 mph winds blew through the area, Homeland Security coordinator Kim Elder said.
She said the wind blew over trees, tore road signs from the ground and tore roofs off buildings, including the roof of a hockey arena in Des Moines.
"We had some people trapped in buildings and cars," she said. She said the extent of the injuries was unknown and no deaths had been reported.
Elder said some people reported that their cars overturned in the wind, power lines fell on them, and were injured when hit by flying debris. Dozens of cars in a factory had their windshields blown out. Buildings caught fire too, she said.
“We are in lifesaving mode right now,” Elder said.
Photos shared by Des Moines residents depict a city being inundated by strong gusts of wind that offset multiple buildings and structures.
Vehicles and entire RVs were overturned, a wooden outdoor deck was reduced to nothing but wooden planks, and a number of farms were damaged.
A video shared by an Iowa resident showed a rundown tractor-trailer truck on a rainy freeway. The truck was knocked down by powerful gusts of wind and the emergency lights blinked as only a handful of Iowans braving the storm drove by.
The resident said her son and father helped the truck driver out of the vehicle and waited at the scene for the emergency services to arrive. The driver is fine and no serious injuries have been reported.
The Iowa Department of Transportation shared another photo of the articulated truck and warned residents not to travel during the derecho.
The video, captured by an Iowa resident, showed an articulated truck that appeared to have slipped during the severe thunderstorm and fell onto a freeway
The Iowa Department of Transportation shared another photo of the articulated truck and warned residents not to travel during the derecho
Photos shared on social media show a Ford truck on its roof and a vehicle that looked like a motor home pushed on its side by the high gusts of wind in Iowa
At least two tractor units (pictured) were run over by the gusts of wind that drove through Iowa on Monday at a speed of 100 km / h
According to MidAmerican Energy, nearly 101,000 customers in the Des Moines area were without power after the storm hit the Iowa area
Farmers reported that some grain bins were destroyed and fields were flattened, but the extent of the damage to Iowa's agriculture was not immediately clear.
A farm door measuring 24 "by 18" was reportedly ripped off its hinges during the storm and found more than 200 meters away.
In Collins, a woman's farm was torn apart when two grain bins and seven tire buildings were hit. She added that she would need to bring 800 farm pigs together and find a new home for them.
Marshalltown Mayor Joel Greer declared a civil emergency and urged residents to stay home and off the road so first responders can respond to calls.
Travel advisories have also been issued in the towns of Ankeny, Johnston, Boone and Perry.
Central American spokeswoman Tina Hoffman: “It's a lot of tree damage. Very strong wind. It will be a significant effort to hold out and get everyone back on track. It was a big front that went all the way through the state. & # 39;
A car passing tree branches is knocked down on the Northside after a severe thunderstorm in Iowa City, Iowa on Monday
According to MidAmerican Energy, nearly 101,000 customers in the Des Moines area were without power after the storm hit the area. Reports from observers filed with the National Weather Service in Des Moines had winds in excess of 70 miles per hour.
MidAmerican spokeswoman Tina Hoffman said fallen trees make it difficult for workers in some locations to access power lines. In some cases, powerline masts have been demolished.
& # 39; It's a lot of tree damage. Very strong wind. It's going to be a significant effort to keep going and get everyone going again, ”she said. "It was a big front that went all the way through the state."
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, has "both significant and widespread damage across the city," said Greg Buelow, public safety spokesman.
"We have done damage to homes and businesses, including siding and damaged roofs," he said. "Trees and power lines have fallen all over town."
Pictured: Part of a building in Iowa is damaged and part of the roof appeared to have collapsed after the derecho hit the United States on Monday
Debris from an Iowa farm was sent about 200 yards from the building by strong gusts of wind that flooded the state for several hours
Forrest Marshall (pictured), the head of the breakfast team at Wendy's, picks up letters from a sign that was toppled in Cedar Rapids, Iowa after a severe storm hit the state
Buelow said residents should stay home so crews can respond to "potentially life-threatening calls". Tens of thousands of people on the subway were without electricity.
In Nebraska, the storms raced east before 9 a.m., bringing down heavy rains and strong winds. Strong straight winds pushed south into areas like Lincoln and Omaha, said National Weather Service meteorologist Brian Barjenbruch.
"As soon as that rain-cooled air touched the ground, it rose 100 miles and sent incredibly strong winds over the area," said Barjenbruch.
Omaha Public Power District reported more than 55,500 customers without power in Omaha and the surrounding communities. Some cities are still under the Hazardous Weather Outlook notes.
There is a low probability of an isolated storm in the far southeast of Nebraska at night today. Localized heavy rain would be the main threat, ”wrote the National Weather Service.
From Tuesday to Sunday: “On Wednesday and Thursday there is the possibility of storm activities. The serious potential will be limited, ”said Nebraska.
Des Moines city crews remove a tree that fell on Hickman Road on Monday, August 10, 2020 in Des Moines, Iowa after a storm blew through the city with gusts of more than 120 km / h
Storms with gusts of wind over 80 miles per hour felled trees that caused power outages in Des Moines, Iowa on Saturday, August 8, 2020
A traffic light on Clinton Street went down and signs were bent after a severe thunderstorm on Monday, August 10, 2020 in Iowa City, Iowa
In Chicago, a roof broke near a downtown street and was lifted into the air by gusts of wind that arrived Monday afternoon after a trip from Nebraska
A summary of the Derecho impact on Nebraska showed that the city of Bennington had the highest wind speeds at 77 mph, followed by Little Sioux at 70 mph.
Much of the area suffered widespread tree damage, particularly in "orange shaded areas".
A severe thunderstorm warning was issued in Omaha but was dismissed later that day as the storm rolled out of the state into Illinois.
What makes a derecho worse than a tornado is how long it can float in one place and how large an area is that the high winds hit, Marsh said. He said winds of 80 miles an hour or even 100 miles an hour can stretch for '20, 30, 40 or God forbid 100 miles.
"Right now it's on its way to Chicago," said Marsh on Monday afternoon. "It remains to be seen whether or not it will maintain its intensity upon reaching Chicago."
But the environmental conditions between the storm and Chicago are the type that are unlikely to lessen the storm, Marsh said. It will likely disperse over central or eastern Indiana, he said.
Social media photos shared by an Iowa resident showed part of a demolished roof of a house, what appeared to be a damaged patio, and debris scattered throughout
However, as of Monday evening, Chicago was inundated by high winds, persistent rain and multiple cases of property damage.
The damage that came with the derecho followed the vandalism from Sunday night when dozens of Chicagoans looted downtown shops.
During the long night, more than 100 people were arrested, 13 police officers attacked and widespread riots broke out.
Cars plowed through the storefronts for easy access for the crowds, and although 400 officers were dispatched to the area, the police made an effort to keep up with the crowds.
One officer was attacked with a bottle, another had broken his nose, and a group of different officers were shot at by passing attackers while they were trying to arrest other looters. On Monday morning, police were still arresting people at a Best Buy, one of the stores that had been searched. Some of the city's bridges were raised and tunnels closed as police tried to regain control of the situation.
"It was still a pretty impressive storm," weather service meteorologist Bryan Leatherwood told the Chicago Tribune.
"We get tons of reports of fallen tall trees and power lines and debris being thrown through the walls of houses."
Footage shared by the agency showed wind lifting debris into the air in a Chicago park after a tornado warning was implemented.
A Chicago resident shared a photo of the storm hovering over the city with ominous dark clouds obscuring downtown buildings.
A tree fell over vehicles at a home in West Des Moines, Iowa after a severe thunderstorm hit Iowa on Monday
Pictured: A family's trampoline was blown across the yard and almost onto the porch in the Nebraska winds
Winds up to 100 miles per hour sent debris and trees from a farm in Chicago 200 to 300 meters into the field.
A building under construction partially collapsed during the storm and a steeple in College Church near Wheaton College collapsed.
In Lincoln Park, a large tree was knocked over by the wind and fell onto a parked van.
Lucas Seiler told the Chicago Tribune he had just got home and was seeing a tornado warning on his cell phone when the incident happened.
"I heard that crackle, and a huge tree I loved fell down," said Seiler. "It's massive. You can see the roots tear up the brick that was on the ground."
In Naperville, more than 300 homes had to be supplied with electricity, and the city's transportation routes were malfunctioning.
At 4 p.m., the National Weather Service warned residents that gusts of wind were increasing in several areas. Sugar Grove Aurora Airport recorded 54 miles per hour and DuPage Airport recorded gusts of up to 60 miles per hour.
One forecast predicts the rain will go away in the middle of the week before returning for the weekend on Friday and Saturday.
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