The National Weather Service has confirmed a strong tornado that thrashed the southwestern Missouri city of Fredericktown as strong storms that swept the state and into Illinois overnight damaged buildings and knocked out power, but left no serious injuries.
The National Weather Service confirmed an EF-3 tornado hit Fredericktown Sunday night, damaging homes, businesses and the main electrical substation that feeds power to the city of about 4,000. A tornado with that rating is considered strong, and wind speeds range from 136-165 mph (219-266 kph).
The tornado leveled a storage building in Fredericktown, officials said.
The weather service was also surveying damage from a suspected tornado at St. Mary, Missouri, about 55 miles southeast of St. Louis, that crossed the Mississippi River into Chester, Illinois. The damage included roofs torn from buildings and toppled trees and utility poles. Crews were also looking into whether the storms spawned tornadoes in rural areas in the northeastern corner of Kansas and throughout the northern half of Missouri.
In Chester, a city of about 8,700 across the Mississippi River from St. Mary, residents reported damage that included a tree falling onto one home and roof damage to a nursing home, said Larry Willis, a spokesman for the Randolph County Emergency Management Agency.
Willis said the nearby village of Bremen “took a direct hit” before the storm dissipated about a mile (1.6 kilometers) east of that community. In its wake, a large storage building in Bremen was destroyed, and Illinois Route 150 was closed due to downed power lines and power poles.
Forecasters are expecting more stormy weather later in the week. On Tuesday afternoon, parts of Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas could see severe storms, according to the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma. Forecasters said those storms could bring large hail, strong winds and isolated tornadoes.