Ottawa tornado packed 155 mph winds

OTTAWA – The National Weather Service says the tornado that roared through Ottawa and the small village of Naplate packed winds up to 155 mph.

The weather service rated Tuesday’s tornado, which caused severe damage in Naplate and left one dead in Ottawa, an EF-3 on the Enhanced Fujita scale.

The weather service did not rule out the possibility that other tornados may have touched down in the area southwest of Chicago. Baseball sized hail was also observed in the area.

According to the NWS, peak winds in the Naplate-Ottawa tornado reached 155 mph, with the system traveling about 11.5 miles just before 5 p.m. Tuesday.

“Naplate’s been devastated,” Gov. Bruce Rauner said after touring the damage Wednesday morning. “I understand 64 homes are going to have to be demolished. And the blessing is that more people weren’t hurt.”

An EF-1 tornado was reported near the northern Illinois town of Oregon. Straight line winds of around 80 mph following the tornado caused additional damage.

The Oregon tornado’s winds peaked out just shy of 100 mph, NWS said, and traveled 1.5 miles between 5:07 and 5:09 p.m.

In southern Illinois, an apparent twister of undetermined strength near the town of Crossville killed a 71-year-old man and injured his wife. Tuesday’s storms claimed the lives of at least three people across Illinois and Missouri.

–Associated Press & Staff reports

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