WICHITA, Kansas – Mother Nature made her presence known this Father Day’s weekend. As high winds, hail, even land spout tornadoes hit northern Kansas.
It wasn’t until 9 p.m. Saturday the storm hit some areas hard. Roofs were blown off schools and grain elevators were toppled in Norcatur. Trees blocked drive ways in Ellinwood.
Autumn Arasmith, the director for Thomas County Emergency Management, says winds reached 60-80 mph near Colby. She says hail varied from marble size to baseball size, but still she says they dodged a bullet.
“One business who lost some windows on the left side of their building and I know of one house for sure that lost windows on the left,” said Arasmith. “I was just expected a lot more damage, we just really did ok. It kind of felt like we were in the eye of the storm because all the counties around us just really sustained a lot of damage.”
That damage was highly noticeable Sunday morning.
“Just coming down I-70 this morning you could see a couple of semi trucks that had been blown over on their sides,” said Mike Morley with Midwest Energy. “Highway signs along the exits were the winds were strong enough to bend them back.”
Midwest Energy worked nonstop to get power restored. A more than 35 70 foot poles were blown over leaving wires dangling to the ground.
“We had more than 70 outages throughout our system more than 5,000 customers down; stretching as far as Goodland, Hays and WaKeeney, all up and down the I-70,” said Morley.
That same storm produced some tornados in Nebraska, causing damage there, but like in Kansas, no injuries were reported