Two tornadoes touched down in Central Illinois on Saturday

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Peoria, IL – After conducting damage surveys, the National Weather Service has confirmed that two EF-1 tornadoes touched down in Central Illinois on Saturday evening.

A squall line moved through the region on Saturday evening producing damaging winds, heavy rain and isolated tornadoes. The line of storms had a history of producing damaging wind gusts and brief spin-up tornadoes in Iowa and continued to produce severe weather across Central Illinois. The tornadoes were not part of supercell thunderstorms but were instead associated with small circulations that were embedded within the line of storms. 

Tornado 1 – South Pekin (Tazewell County)

NWS Damage survey of South Pekin Tornado

According to the NWS, this tornado touched down in an open field half a mile NW of the intersection of N Deppert Rd and Christmas Tree Rd. The tornado traveled 2.5 miles and damaged four homes in the process. It caused significant tree damage near each home, destroyed a shed along Christmas Tree Rd, and a garage was completely shifted off its foundation.

Time10:20 PM
EF RatingEF-1
Est. Peak Winds105 mph
Path Length2.5 miles
Max Width200 yards
Screenshot of the radar indicated rotation along Christmas Tree Rd in South Pekin.
A destroyed outbuilding along Christmas Tree Rd, 2 miles south of South Pekin, IL. Courtesy: National Weather Service

Tornado 2 – Bellflower (McLean County)

NWS Damage survey of Bellflower Tornado

According to the NWS, this tornado touched down in an open field about 1.5 miles north of Bellflower. The tornado was on the ground for 2.0 miles and destroyed a machine shed. Debris from the shed was spotted about a mile downstream. 

Time11:36 PM
EF RatingEF-1
Est. Peak Winds100 mph
Path Length2.0 miles
Max Width50 yards
A machine shed destroyed north of Bellflower. Courtesy: National Weather Service

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