Storms race through western IA Sunday – damage reports coming in

News, Weather

May 7th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Strong storms bringing heavy rain and winds gusting up to 70-miles per hour raced through western Iowa Sunday morning, causing injuries to a family of three camping in a tent at Lake Manawa State Park. The injuries occurred when a tree fell on the tent at around 5-a.m., Sunday. Elsewhere, there were reports of flooding, hail and downed power lines. The warnings began in our area just before 6-a.m.

According to the National Weather Service at 6:10-a.m., nickel-sized hail was reported by a trained storm spotter in Audubon County, 4-miles west of the Audubon Airport. A few minutes later, the hail was the size of quarters in the same area, and in the City of Audubon itself. A cooperative weather service observer in Audubon also reported 2.67-inches of rain had fallen by 8-a.m., causing flash flooding to occur 4-miles west/southwest of the Audubon Airport, with water covering the County Highway N-14 bridge over the Indian Creek. One-half mile of road was also under water. Another spotter reported 4.5-inches of rain west of the airport.

Meanwhile, in Cass County, law enforcement reported a squad car was rocked by estimated 60-mile per hour winds, just before 6:30-a.m., Sunday, about 4-miles southwest of the Atlantic Airport. Dime-sized hail was also reported. Thunderstorm wind damage was reported in Atlantic at around 6:30-a.m., with some shingles blown off roofs, and 12-to 14-inch diameter trees being snapped.

As the storms moved into Adair County, wind gusts of up to 65-miles per hour were reported 6-miles west/southwest of Greenfield just after 7-a.m. Those same type of winds were observed six-miles north of Greenfield at 7-a.m., causing 12-inch diameter tree limbs to bend at an estimated 10-degree angle.

The storms continued into Central Iowa, where 71-miles per hour winds were recorded near Dallas Center at around 8:30-a.m. Two power poles were snapped-off at the base near Nevada, at around 8:50-a.m., by fierce winds.