Mt. Vernon Register-News

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April 21, 2011

NWS: Tornado touched down in Centralia on Tuesday

CENTRALIA — While Jefferson County was mostly unscathed by Tuesday’s storm, Centralia was not so fortunate.

The National Weather Service’s St. Louis Forecast Center reported Thursday an F1 tornado touched down in Marion County during the storm, causing damage to several homes and businesses.

The NWS storm damage survey and summary indicated the tornado had winds of 95 miles per hour, was 50 to 75 yards wide and scurried across  four-tenths of a mile of land.

The tornado touched down approximately one mile east of the Centralia Municipal Airport, south of Illinois 161.

Among damage reported by the NWS was a 2X4 board driven into the roof of a home as well as “several large healthy trees” being uprooted and other roof damage to homes in the area. Also, “a house on the southwest corner of Moonglow and Illinois 161 sustained ... damage when the roof of an attached workshop or garage on the south side of the house was uplifted and thrown to the northwest.”

Here is text from the NWS’ St. Louis Forecast Center storm damage survey and summary:

“One tornado touched down in southwest Marion County Illinois on Tuesday, April 19. The tornado touched down approximately one mile east of the Centralia Municipal Airport, west of Moonglow Road and south of Illinois 161. Several large healthy trees were uprooted in this area and a convergent pattern was found. A house on the southwest corner of Moonglow and Illinois 161 sustained EF1 damage when the roof of an attached workshop or garage on the south side of the house was uplifted and thrown to the northwest.

“At least one 2x4 was driven into the roof on the north side of the house. A house on the southeast corner of Moonglow and Illinois 161 sustained minor roof damage. A trampoline on the south side of this house was blown back to the northwest and was found on the north side of Illinois 161.

“Debris was scattered into a field on the northwest corner of Moonglow and Illinois 161. A small outbuilding on the northeast corner of Moonglow and Illinois 161 sustained damage on the east facing side. A new pole barn located east of Moonglow and south of Firewood Lane collapsed.

“The total length of this tornado was about 0.4 miles with a maximum width of 50 to 75 yards. Maximum damage was rated EF1 with winds of 95 mph.  The vast majority of the damage sustained in the city of Centralia was due to straight line winds that were at least 75 mph.”

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