Sioux Falls Tornado (Update)

Sioux Falls Tornado (Update) Click to Enlarge

Update:

The National Weather Service now says three tornadoes struck Sioux Falls overnight.

National Weather Service lead meteorologist Todd Heitkamp in Sioux Falls tweets that he has determined three separate tornadoes struck South Dakota's largest city late Tuesday.

All three tornadoes were rated EF-2. Two had winds of about 125 mph while the third had winds of 130 mph.

The twister with the fastest winds struck the Avera Health Complex on the south side of Sioux Falls. A hospital spokesman says seven patients and one person outside the hospital suffered minor injuries.

The last tornado confirmed in Sioux Falls was an EF-0 that struck on June 12, 2001.

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Severe weather, including a probable tornado, struck Sioux Falls leaving a trail of damaged buildings, powerlines and trees.

Fire Chief Brad Goodroad says at least 37 structures collapsed in the city or have structural issues.

National Weather Service lead meteorologist Todd Heitkamp in Sioux Falls says a damage survey will be done to confirm that a tornado caused the damage. Heitkamp says the majority of the damage was likely caused by strong straight-line winds.

Among the buildings damaged are Avera Heart Hospital and an Advanced Auto Parts store. The local school district delayed the start of classes Wednesday as crews worked to clear debris from city streets. Xcel Energy says at the height of the storm as many as 25,000 customers lost power.



AP

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