One person was reportedly killed by a possible tornado in southeast Iowa’s Keokuk County on Sunday afternoon and there’s scattered damage to homes, trees and power lines across the region. Reports say there may have been several tornadoes touch down in the state, but meteorologist Kurt Kotenberg at the National Weather Service, says we’ll know more shortly. “We haven’t confirmed any tornadoes yet,” Kotenberg says. “We sent out a damage survey team. They’re out this morning and they’re determining whether the damage was caused by tornadoes or straight line wind.”
Strong winds apparently tore the roof off a medical clinic in Oskaloosa and one person was reportedly hurt when a barn collapsed near the town of Martinsburg. There are several reports of injuries from around the state. “There were some stronger wind gusts especially in eastern and southeastern Iowa,” Kotenberg says. “We had 60 mile an hour wind gusts in Ottumwa. Very, very strong winds rolled through portions of southeastern Iowa during the daytime.”
There are reports of possible tornadoes in several eastern Iowa counties, including: Linn, Davis, Monroe and Keokuk counties. “Yes, and that’s exactly why we’re sending the damage survey team out now to investigate,” Kotenberg says. “They’ll take a look at the damage and assess whether it was caused by straight line winds or possibly by a little tornado which may have spun off. We do have damage reports around the Ottumwa and Oskaloosa area.”
Forecasters say there’s the possibility for more severe weather this afternoon. “It does look like we’ll see another round of strong and maybe severe thunderstorms though that chance is mainly going to be in eastern Iowa,” Kotenberg says. “Here in central Iowa, the chance for severe weather is very low for this afternoon. We’ll definitely be keeping an eye on it. It does look like there will be thunderstorms, a couple of them could be strong but the severe weather threat is lower than what it was yesterday.”
Reports say there were more than 30 tornadoes reported nationwide yesterday, with as many as 18 deaths, including at least 16 dead in Arkansas and at least one death in Oklahoma.