Residents in a line across central Madison County spent their Saturday cleaning up and assessing damage from the severe weather Friday night. The National Weather Service estimates a low end EF-3 tornado with wind speed up to 140 mph struck the landfill in Roxana and straight line winds hit Edwardsville. Additional investigations will take place in Macoupin County near Gillespie where the high school was damaged.
The storm began in St. Charles County and a tornado is believed to have cut a path across north St. Louis County and then into the southern part of the Riverbend. Hardest hit was the southern edge of Hartford where the Road Runner Gas Station (top photo) and Midwest Motor Sports (2nd photo) along Route 3 experienced roof damage. Trees were down throughout the villages of Roxana and South Roxana, some on homes, others on cars, and even a radio tower at Jarrett Industries (3rd photo) along Madison Avenue was bent nearly in half by the wind. There was also damage along Wanda Road and Madison Avenue east of 255, just down the street from the Wanda United Methodist Church. (bottom photo)
A number of buildings at the Republic Services/Allied Waste Landfill were destroyed, but no trash trucks were damaged and trash pick-up took place as normal according to company spokesperson Susan Piazza. She said the scale shed was destroyed, but the scales were not damaged and their employees drove their normal routes today.
There was also storm damage reported in Edwardsville in the form of downed power lines, trees, and tree limbs.
In Gillespie, the high school was hit Friday night by what was believed to be an EF-2 tornado, causing extensive damage to the gymnasium a leaving a large section of the roof torn away. The concession stand at the nearby football field was destroyed...after being rebuilt from a tornado that destroyed just two years ago.
Elsewhere, aside from downed trees or tree limbs, the rest of the Riverbend escaped with just heavy rain and wind that began shortly after 8:00pm Friday
(Storm photo credits: Top, 3rd and 4th - Natalie Ellebracht. 2nd photo - Terry Lohr)
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