Derecho confirmed in Midwest

A principal atmospheric scientist with Nutrien Ag Solutions says the line of storms that moved through the Midwest damaging crops and farm buildings on Thursday is a confirmed derecho.

The National Weather Service says a derecho is a line of intense, widespread and fast-moving windstorms that moves through. It must be at least 240 miles with wind gusts of at least 58 miles per hour to be considered a derecho.

Eric Snodgrass says the storms that brought 80 miles-per-hour winds, hail, tornadoes and much-needed rain started in Colorado.

“It developed in the early morning hours in Nebraska, then got to the Missouri/Iowa border and raced toward the Mississippi River and then, lined out in a big way across parts of Illinois, Indiana and the Ohio River.”

Snodgrass says there’s damage to grain bins and other farm structures. He also says it’s unclear how many crop acres were destroyed and there are more storms in the forecast.

“Another band of weather is expected to go from Colorado to northern Kansas and Nebraska, stretching through Missouri, southern Iowa, but in Illinois, Indiana and Ohio and the Eastern Corn Belt, there’s a good chance of another 1 to 2 inches of good rainfall.”

He says the derecho could be the beginning of much better conditions across the Midwest, but consistent rains in the next few weeks will be needed to make up for the widespread lack of soil moisture.

Photo credit: A scope of the severe weather reports as of 9 p.m. on 6/29 via the National Weather Service in Lincoln, Illinois. The NWS says additional surveys of damage are being taken on 6/30.

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