A Derecho roared across the Midwest, Monday


NOAA Environmental Visualization Laboratory

On August 10, 2020, NOAA’s GOES-East satellite tracked severe thunderstorms as they raced across much of the Midwest and caused a widespread, fast-moving windstorm called a derecho. According to the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center, the derecho traveled from far southeastern South Dakota into Ohio—a distance of about 770 miles—in a span of 14 hours.

The high winds were reportedly so strong that they flipped or blew some tractor-trailers off roadways, downed trees, flattened crops, and caused widespread property damage. Across the Upper Midwest in Iowa, Illinois, and Indiana, more than 1 million homes and businesses lost power. In Iowa, where gusts reportedly topped 100 mph, the damage was even more severe; the highest wind speed recorded there 112 mph near Midway.

When I still was on the road out here in the Southwest, I saw one of these suckers coming just as I was leaving Amarillo, Texas, heading back home. Turned around in a New York minute and made it back to the last motel west of town and got into the office to register for the night…just in time.

3 thoughts on “A Derecho roared across the Midwest, Monday

  1. Harbinger says:

    “Iowans struggle to find help, strength after powerful storm devastates homes, farms” (WAPO 8/14/20) https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/iowans-struggle-to-find-help-strength-after-powerful-storm-devastates-homes-farms/2020/08/14/f55d0508-de57-11ea-8051-d5f887d73381_story.html
    “Six days after a derecho storm devastated Iowa, the state is slow to recover. More than 100,000 people still have no power and nearly half of all crops in the state have been damaged.” (CBS News 8/15/20)

  2. 2 weeks later says:

    The 14-hour storm caused extensive damage. Now Iowans are trying to recover from the ‘land hurricane’ https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/21/us/iowa-derecho-recovery/index.html
    The derecho covered an area nearly 800 miles wide in the Midwest with hurricane-force winds topping 100 miles per hour.
    It lasted 14 hours, destroying or severely damaging thousands of homes, schools and businesses while uprooting countless trees that had stood for over a century, helping take power lines down with them.
    An emergency declaration signed by President Donald Trump on Tuesday will send $45 million in assistance, but it’s a small portion of the roughly $4 billion requested by Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds. https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/14/us/iowa-storms-recovery-emergency-declaration/index.html

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