Saturday’s severe weather spurred at least three verified tornadoes in northern Illinois that have been confirmed by meteorologists at the National Weather Service’s Chicago office, agency officials said Sunday.
No one was injured as a direct result of these tornadoes, all of which were considered “weak” when using the Enhanced Fujita scale, the universal method of evaluating the strength of a tornado. In addition, there were several reports of wind damage in the Rockford area, but experts attribute it to “straight line winds” and not a tornado.
- The first tornado took place at. 16.44 in DuPage County. Known as the Oak Brook tornado, the EC-0 tornado had a maximum sustained wind of 75 mph as it wound a 1.9-mile trail that began southwest of Oak Brook and moved northeast, according to the weather service. The tornado had a maximum width of 60 yards and it landed near the Hilton Hotel and Willow Crest Golf Club and ended up in Central Park in Oak Brook, forecasters said. “Damage along the path was characterized by broken branches and a few torn trees as well as partial roof loss on an outbuilding. The tornado was on the ground for about three minutes, ”according to a summary of the weather service.
- The second tornado occurred about an hour later, at. 17.54 in Boone County and it is known as the Timberlane tornado, also an EF-0, meteorologists said. It was on the ground for about a minute and had maximum sustained winds of 80 mph, experts said. It landed near the intersection of Briar Cliff Street “and lifted over Candlewick Lake,” according to the weather service. “Several conifers were uprooted and cracked at the beginning of the tornado path and laid in a converging pattern. In addition, several floating docks were thrown over Candlewick Lake.”
- The third tornado also occurred in Boone County, near the small town of Capron, nearly 80 miles northwest of Chicago. It received a rating on EF-U for “unknown”. The weather service explained the assessment by saying: “When a tornado is known to have occurred but does not cause damage to any qualified damage indicators, or if the only damage is located in an area inaccessible to NWS investigators, then the tornado may be assigned EC-Unknown (EC-U) classification. ” The Capron tornado was verified “based on two images shared with the National Weather Service by the public,” meteorologists said. The “short tornado” landed “in an open field near the intersection of the Coon Trail and the Capron Roads just south of the Wisconsin state line. No known damage was caused by the tornado.”
The straight winds reported in Rockford appear to have caused more damage than the tornadoes, according to preliminary weather service information. The assessment was “based on a review of drone footage provided by the Rockford Fire Department and radar data from both Chicago and Milwaukee NWS radars,” officials said.
“It was determined that a narrow swath of straight winds of 70 to 80 mph occurred near the intersection of 9th and Broadway streets southeast of downtown Rockford. These winds caused the loss of a metal roof to a building south of Broadway Street, resulting in, that the west- and south-facing walls collapsed, ”according to the weather service.
In addition, roofing material from that building was blown off the building, and “several electric poles and trees were broken along 9th Street along with additional roof damage nearby. The orientation of the damage was consistent with a divergent area with southerly straight winds,” the weather service said.
For more information on the weather forecast, visit the Tribune’s weather page and check back for updates.