Hail, strong winds and even a tornado has occurred in Shelby County while the rest of the surrounding area has dealt with much of the same the past two days and the weather continues to be a threat for much of today (Monday). The Shelby County Emergency Management Agency reports the heavy storm that came through western Iowa earlier this (Monday) morning produced quarter sized to baseball sized hail that fell near Prairie Rose State Park. Bob Seivert, EMA Coordinator, says the area isn’t in the clear.
“We have been placed in a tornado watch until 6 o’clock. We are actively watching storms forming from our northwest moving to the southeast and will be in our area in the next several hours.”
Sunday evening a tornado was spotted about five miles northwest of Harlan around 8:15pm. Seivert says the EMA had reports it was actually multiple tornadoes.
“There were reports of two brief touchdowns that were documented and we do have footage of them. Difficult sometimes when people are viewing one storm from many different angles to determine if that is the same tornado or different tornado.” Seivert said no damage has been reported from the tornadoes reported in the county. Sirens were howling in Shelby County during the tornado warning and Seivert says residents need to heed the warnings.
“These storms develop rapidly and become violent rapidly and most people are not able to respond and react if they are outside when these develop. The other thing most of these storms are accompanied with severe cloud to ground lightening. That can be devastating if you are struck by lightening. The bottom line is when a tornado warning is issued and the sirens are sounding, it is time to go inside and seek shelter, not stand outside and try to catch it on your cell phone.”
The Shelby County Emergency Management Agency offers residents the availability of having warnings directly to your phone through the code red alerts. You can sign up online at www.shelbycountyema.com.