A funnel cloud was seen in the sky over the Wolf Lake area Thursday evening, May 31. The image was captured by Aaron Hoevel and originally was posted online.

Tornadoes cause damage in Union County

Severe storms on May 31 impact region

Multiple rounds of thunderstorms impacted the region Thursday, May 31.

The National Weather Service office in Paducah reported that damaging winds, large hail, flooding and three tornadoes were observed in the region on May 31.

Two of the tornadoes were spotted in Union County, where tornado warning sirens sounded at about 8 p.m. on May 31.

The tornadoes caused damage in the Wolf Lake area; no injuries were reported.

Information posted on the website for the National Weather Service office in Paducah reported that the first round of storms on May 31 moved through Southern Illinois, mainly north of Route 13, and into southwest Indiana and northwest Kentucky during the morning and early afternoon hours.

“Widespread damaging winds were associated with this line of storms,” the weather service reported. 

Scattered thunderstorms then began to develop by mid- to late-afternoon, and continued into the evening.

Parts of Southern Illinois and Southeast Missouri were under a tornado watch Thursday afternoon and evening, May 31.

The weather service issued a tornado warning at 7:44 p.m. May 31 for parts of Union County and Cape Girardeau County.

The weather service shared the information about three tornadoes which were spotted Thursday evening in Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois.

Fruitland, Mo., Tornado

The first tornado was seen in the Fruitland, Mo., area, in east Cape Girardeau County. The duration of the tornado was from 7:44 p.m. to 7:49 p.m.

The tornado had a rating of EF-1 and estimated peak winds of 90 miles per hour.

The tornado’s path was 2.5 miles long. The twister had a maximum width of 150 yards.

The tornado touched down 5 miles east of Fruitland and lifted 8 miles east of Fruitland, near the Trail of Tears State Park. Dozens of trees,  some large, were broken or uprooted. Several power poles were snapped by fallen trees.

Wolf Lake Tornadoes

An EF-1 tornado with  estimated peak winds of 95 mph and a duration from 7:54 p.m. to 8:02 p.m. was seen in the Wolf Lake area in western Union County.

The twister had a path that was 3.5 miles long and a maximum width of 150 yards.

The weather service reported that the tornado touched down 3 miles southwest of Wolf Lake and lifted 2 miles south of Wolf Lake.

A very large equipment barn collapsed and another barn was destroyed, with the loss of the roof and collapse of walls.

A one-story house was partially shifted off its foundation and had a window broke from flying debris.

All structural damage was along the Ware-Wolf Lake Road.

Dozens of trees were snapped or uprooted.

An EF-0 tornado with estimated peak winds of 75 mph and a duration from 7:55 p.m. to 7:59 p.m. was seen in the Wolf Lake area.

The tornado had a path that was 1.25 miles long and a maximum width of 50 yards.

The tornado touched  2.5 miles southwest of Wolf Lake and lifted 1 mile east of Wolf Lake. 

Several tree limbs, mostly small, were broken. The roof of a barn was blown in one side.

Help with Clean-up

Community members turned out Friday to help with clean-up at the Randy Lambdin farm near Wolf Lake, which sustained damage during the severe weather.

Shelly Clover-Hill, the superintendent of Shawnee School District No. 84, said about 40 to 50 people came to help.

School district staff members helped to raise funds which were used to provide a lunch on Friday for those who were helping with the clean-up. Students from the district were among those from the community who helped.

“We were glad to help him out,” Clover-Hill said.


The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158
Email: news@annanews.com

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