In the midst of heavy rain and flooding, a bad situation got much worse last night when a suspected tornado hit near the northwest Iowa town of Plover. Pocahontas County Sheriff Bob Lampe says the scene was already dire when nearly four-inches of rain fell on saturated soil in just a few hours, but then the twister struck the eastern edge of the county.
Sheriff Lampe says: “We had a lot of damage over there, power lines down, a hog confinement, the roof blown off, grain bins blown out into the fields. The corn over there, crops are flat on the ground. I believe we did have a tornado in that area. Looks like more damage than straight line winds. A lot of trees, power lines down.” While there’s widespread damage to property, Lampe says he’s heard no reports of anyone being hurt.
Lampe says: “We’ve been able to account for everybody and get to the residents over there through the night and check on everybody. A lot of people are out of power. The Rolfe area has some trees down on buildings. A lot of basements over there with anywhere from a foot to three foot of water in ’em.” The sheriff says it may take a while to assess all the damage.
Lampe says: “We don’t have any dollar figures at this time. Emergency Management has been on scene and assessing the damage and trying to determine if it was straight-line winds or a tornado but it appears that there was a tornado in the far eastern part of our county, at least winds that exceeded 100-miles-an-hour.” He says no evacuations have been ordered in Pocahontas County, but residents were forced out of a care center in nearby Humboldt overnight. Also, Fort Dodge residents along the Des Moines River are being urged to evacuate.