Update: High Winds Damage Areas On Both Illinois and Missouri Sides Of River, Belleville Hit Hardest Here
The Metro Illinois region had a big scare at about 5 p.m. Thursday when tornado warning messages blew apart people’s phones and outside sirens sounded. Some stores in the region had customers leave their premises when the sirens and warnings were issued.
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In the Metro East region, Belleville may have been hit the hardest by the heavy winds. Faith Baptist Church in Belleville had its roof ripped off and a pantry associated with it also had roof damage. An EF1 tornado rocked North Clinton and Bond Counties and there was a tornado touchdown on Jamestown Road a few miles outside Breese. There were reports of trees that were blown down and farm outbuildings were reported damaged near Breese.
An EF0 tornado touched down just south of I-64 near Okawville and damaged farm outbuildings. Peak winds were 85 mph in that touch down.
Another EF0 tornado touched down near Creve Coeur, Mo., just north of Olive Boulevard, and power poles were snapped. In Kirkwood, Mo., an EFO tornado with 80 mph touched down and trees were uprooted and power lines were taken down. Another tornado in St. Louis County recorded a touchdown in Frontenac, Mo., near Chaminade High School with wind speeds of 85 mph. Freeburg reported down trees and power lines and property damage.
Storms are expected back again after midnight on Saturday and there could be heavy rainfall and lightning. The weather should clear Saturday.
Ameren Illinois activated its Southern Region Emergency Operations Center after the weather event.
The NWS said the Alton-Godfrey region delivered about 30-40 mph winds during the height of the storm Thursday, so it was considered fortunate compared to its neighbors on both sides of the river.
Several vehicles were flooded on I-55 in the Longborough Avenue area in St. Louis.