Two of the four restaurants in Dorset — a town of just 22 people in northern Minnesota — were reportedly damaged by fire overnight as severe storms rolled through the area. The general manager of the Dorset House restaurant said that she had been informed that the restaurant was consumed by flames, but hadn’t been there to see the damage herself yet. Witnesses said that the neighboring Compañeros was also damaged by fire.
More strong thunderstorms are rolling across Minnesota, a day after heavy rain caused street flooding and hail wiped out an orchard’s apple crop. The National Weather Service posted a severe thunderstorm warning for Aitkin, Cass, Crow Wing, Mille Lacs and Morrison counties early Thursday.
The WCCO Weather Watcher is now flashing green, which means that there could be severe storms coming to your scene. Already on Wednesday, some parts of the state saw significant rains as a line of severe storms rolled through the center of the state.
If you live in the southern Twin Cities metropolitan area, you may have heard the sirens go off. There were several reports of a funnel cloud in the sky. A number of viewers reported seeing funnel clouds at around 1 p.m.
The Mankato area was hit hard by flash flooding Wednesday morning, and on Thursday morning the Twin Cities was getting its turn. Thunderstorms with lightning and very heavy rain raced through the metro early Thursday morning, flooding roads and causing traffic problems.
While it may feel like we just got rid of the snow, it’s already time to start thinking about severe spring and summertime weather. This week is Severe Weather Awareness Week in Minnesota.
As a powerful tornado bore down on their Illinois farmhouse, Curt Zehr’s wife and adult son didn’t have time to do anything but scramble down the stairs into their basement. Uninjured, the pair looked out moments later to find the house gone and the sun out and “right on top” of them, Zehr said.
Thunderstorms dumped several inches of rain in and around the bluff town of Winona early Saturday morning. WCCO Weather Watcher Dan Amundson reported eight inches of rain in the area. Flash flooding washed away part of a road on Bob Dunn’s property, and the force took out a walking bridge. “You can actually see the mud build up. You can drive across there before. I used to have a decent road,” Dunn said. “That used to be a bridge, used to have a bridge going right across here.”
Blizzards rolled into parts of Wyoming and South Dakota on Friday, bringing the snow-savvy states to an unseasonably early winter standstill and forcing a tourist town to cancel its annual Octoberfest’s polka-dancing bar crawl.
Xcel Energy says that about 23,000 people were without power in the Twin Cities metro area after severe thunderstorms rolled through Thursday morning.
Thunderstorms packing heavy rain, hail and high winds have pounded parts of southwestern Wisconsin and southeastern Minnesota. The National Weather Service says a cooperative observer measured 2.5-inch hail near La Crosse Thursday.
It’s been two weeks since a pair of violent storms brought down thousands of tree limbs and, in many cases, entire trees. At the corner of 42nd Avenue East near Hiawatha Avenue in Minneapolis, residents are trying to be understanding.
Gov. Mark Dayton has declared a state of emergency in 26 counties after storms and flash flooding last month. The executive order will allow the state to call for federal disaster assistance in the areas hit hardest by storms.
Another night of stormy weather is forecast for Minnesota, following high winds and heavy rains that uprooted trees and knocked out power across a large part of the state early Friday. The NWS has issued a tornado watch for roughly the southwest quarter of the state.
Here’s a gallery of viewer-submitted photos documenting severe weather — thunderstorms, hail, heavy rain, tornadoes — in the warm months of 2013.