The National Weather Service confirmed a couple tornado touchdowns in southwest Iowa during last night’s storm, just a few miles west of Creston.
Union County Emergency Management coordinator Roger Nurnberg says so far he hasn’t found any damage in the rural areas of the county. He says nobody could find where it touched down, likely out in a field, but trained spotters reported it so he feel secure about it. And another that touched the west edge of Creston hit a neighborhood, and he saw that one himself, “so I know that was a tornado.”
Nurnberg says some trees and branches were downed by straight-line winds that came with the storm. One (of the twisters) on the west edge of town knocked a garage and breezeway off their foundation, and there was some damage to yard sheds, siding and shingles in that part of town. Nurnberg says the falling trees did damage, too.
Some lines were downed by tree limbs, as he notes “trees and power lines don’t really mix very well,” though power wasn’t out very long. The Creston Fire Department’s radio tower blew down, though there aren’t any other reports of serious damage in Creston or Union County so far.
A few dozen Des Moines-area houses are still without power after last night’s severe storms. A utility spokesman says nearly three-thousand central Iowans were in the dark at the peak of the lightning, tornadoes, heavy rain, hail and high winds. Allan Urlis, at MidAmerican Energy, urges people to phone their utility when their lights go out.
Urlis says it’s important to call in and report outages. Don’t assume someone else has called as he says the more information they have on the extent of the outage helps them identify the source and to dispatch crews accordingly. Urlis says not to worry about getting through. He says the call answering system has the capability of handling 108-thousand calls per hour, so they’ll never get a busy signal.